Ron Marcella III started working in construction when he was 11 years old, helping his dad, Ron Marcella, Jr., with whatever he could. Now, some 30 years later, he is still working with his dad. Still, they have different approaches to working in the construction industry. Ron Jr. does most of his tasks by hand and using Microsoft Excel, something Ron III knew he didn’t want to do.
“I had a whole, like a dashboard spreadsheet that has like 20 different sheets in it, but I’ve got it to the point where I can go somewhere and based on what the customer wants, it’ll automatically populate my estimate with the materials and anything else I might need,” he said. “Kind of like the recipes. Using the math of it all.”
But even though he said he was still pretty fast and accurate when it came to estimates, he wanted to get even faster!
“Part of our trade to stay competitive is to offer free estimates. If you’re able to provide a quick and accurate estimate for someone, right in their driveway, it’s huge,” he said. “I really wanted to narrow down the estimate process to a small time window so that the customer can decide if it’s out of their price range or if they want to move forward and put a deposit down and move forward.”
The computer information systems major set out to find a software solution to help him achieve his goals. Research conducted by Buildxact and The Farnsworth Group found that 53% of custom home builders and remodelers say they want to do their own takeoffs, estimates, quotes, etc. Ron III is one of those builders. Once he found what he needed in software, he didn’t waste any time.
He saw a Google ad that said ’14-day free trial and gave it a shot.
“The key for builders is focus and organization,” he said. “Now, with Buildxact, I don’t have to worry about misplacing anything and having to make phone calls again to figure it out. It definitely keeps me organized.”
Now, he notices a significant difference between how he works and how his dad works.
“I was in my dad’s office the other day, and I was like, ‘How does he get anything done in here?’ But that’s why he’s not in his office. He doesn’t want to be there. All of the clutter and messages make it so hard to concentrate,” he said. “I need things to be cleared off. Having everything in a browser that you can access from any computer that has an internet connection gives you the peace of mind to not stress out because I don’t have to go to my office to check on things. I can check on things wherever I have access to the internet.”
Ron added that Buildxact lets him look at his bids and notes in one place. He can access them anywhere he has an Internet connection instead of keeping them in different folders in his office. And even though he hasn’t been using Buildxact for a long time, he’s already noticing significant benefits.
“It saves me time on tasks. Turning it on, popping through, looking at a couple of things. I really enjoy using it because it gives you a better mental image of what’s going on and helps you feel more comfortable taking that time for yourself,” he said.
Ron’s excited for what’s ahead as he gets more comfortable using Buildxact. He can already see the light at the end of the tunnel when he won’t be spending the amount of time he was spending before on the same tasks.
“Man, I have a jet ski, and I like to golf,” he said. “I didn’t have much time for them before, but that’s about to change. I can already tell.”
And while that is important to maintain a healthy work-life balance, Ron said Buildxact will make him a better businessman.
“What’s exciting is that I’ll be able to take my focus on double-checking that my numbers are right and focusing on the numbers that my business is doing.”
As his business grows, he already has his eyes set on something.
“Eventually, I’d like to specialize in smart homes.”
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