We got our first look at Sage Estimating’s sql server product, coded version 11.2. Its most significant advantage is its modern database engine, (Microsfot SQL), which eliminates Sage Timberline’s Pervasive albatross of the last 10 years. (I hear rousing applause from contractors’ IT departments around the country.)
With that improvement comes a seismic shift in an estimator’s definitions of familiar concepts such as files and databases. Estimates are no longer contained in the standalone Windows files we’re used to. They now reside merely as data “blobs” in the overall database. Think of the sql database as a data “cloud” that resides on a company’s server. All estimates are now contained within that cloud. Sound chaotic? Actually it’s not. Each project still has its own distinct identity within that “cloud”, and can be viewed, and even exported as a separate element.
The new estimating suite includes a Estimating Management Console & Data Migration tool in addition to its core estimating program. The Management Module. We were able to smoothly migrate our databases into sql using the migration tool with no issues. The management module gave us an Explorer-like console to view the individual project estimates. This early pre-release version doesn’t contain any of built-in interfaces to Job Cost, On Screen Takeoff, PlanSwift, or any outside modules, But the core functionality of Sage Estimating is well-presented. Unfortunately we’re still experiencing some install issues with this version on our server, so this review will be continued when we work those out.