Digital Builder: Joist, the All-in-One Estimating App

Filed in Business Management by on June 23, 2015 0 Comments

NAHB Digital Media Coordinator Brian Hess looks at new apps and other modern technology for home builders in this new monthly feature.

As an avid app store customer, I am always looking for new apps that can increJoist Iconase my productivity at work, change the way I shop, or just keep me entertained. But with millions of apps to choose from on Apple and Android devices, it can be difficult to find the perfect app to keep your business on the cutting edge.

And even if you find some, the reviews can be misleading. For the first installment of this new series, we’re going to talk about a new estimating tool for your mobile device.

Joist — an app available on both iOS and Android that provides estimates, manages invoices, organizes clients and keeps track of sales with just a few taps — is positioning itself to be the new foundation of how you handle sales for your business. With its intuitive, easy-to-learn user experience, Joist can make a huge difference. While it will take a little bit of time to get your company info loaded, it is time well spent.

After creating an account, click the More button and add all your most commonly used materials and their costs (Pro tip: add “labor” as a line item here). The app saves it all so you can quickly recall the pricing information you need to know onsite for the first estimate.

While in the More section, click the My Company tab and upload your logo. This section is also where you can keep track of all your sales.

The "Edit Estimate" screen in Joist

The “Edit Estimate” screen

What an estimate looks like from Joist

An example estimate

When you’re on site and ready to make an estimate, click the Estimates section, in the bottom left corner, and select new estimate. Add your client information (which will then be automatically saved to your in-app contact list and not your personal contact list) and add in all the line items you’ll need for your project. Your estimate will be automatically generated.

The app then allows you to email the estimate to your customer, or have them sign the contract on site. Later, you can use that estimate to generate your invoice and once payment has been collected, the app will add the sales data back under the “My Company” tab.

After adding in all the items I would use on a project, I created my first project. I created an estimate, had a customer sign it, generated an invoice and collected payment in under two minutes. In my opinion, this app lives up to what it advertises and is definitely worth using for your business.

Got an app to review? Email Brian.

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