Winslow Homes’ in-depth estimate procedure bogged down key leaders with unnecessary time-consuming and error-prone tasks. They needed a solution that would encompass his expertise, improve their workflow, and be adaptable. Their new software:
Is your business relying on spreadsheets and specialized knowledge that is limiting your ability to scale a standard process? Winslow Homes was seeing that challenge with their pricing process. Winslow Homes is a custom home builder. Their head estimator spent most of his time, over sixty hours a week, putting together estimates, proposals, and customer contracts—between 20-40 hours per home. Their workflow using multiple spreadsheets of customizable options wasn’t working anymore.
RoleModel Software learned their business to design software that created a solution to improve their process. Winslow Homes’ new software unified three complex spreadsheets into one flexible and expandable system that can grow as they do.
Now, their head estimator can spend his time on more complex tasks—leaving the estimates in the hands of Winslow Homes’ capable salespeople. Their salespeople are now armed with software that has their head estimator’s expertise built in so they can help their customers envision their dream home.
Winslow Homes is one of central North Carolina’s leading custom home builders; they empower their clients to build their dream house with all the special touches that make it home. Their team delivers individualized attention and involves customers throughout the process of building their custom home. Winslow Homes is a certified Energy Star Builder and boasts an in-house design studio where their clients can see samples of the customizations they are choosing all in one place.
Winslow Homes builds between 50-60 homes in a year and has a portfolio of about 70 floor plans, each customizable with a unique selection of options. These standardized floor plans simplify their clients' decisions and let them focus on the details that will make their home everything they envisioned.
For Winslow Homes to scale and to keep up with the volatility of constantly changing construction prices, they needed a software system for their estimate process—including a way to use their standardized options consistently and would reduce the amount of time it takes to complete an estimate.
When Winslow Homes first partnered with RoleModel Software, their process for creating estimates consisted of three spreadsheets with all the options for their custom homes. When customers wanted to consider other options, or when enough time had lapsed that prices changed, their head estimator would have to redo the estimates. Repeatedly redoing estimates created a bottleneck for sales and disrupted their process.
The sales team had limited pricing information and could not give customers estimates independently; they had to wait for the head estimator to complete the estimates. Additionally, pricing volatility in the market means that estimates that used to be good for sixty days were now only good for ten. When prices changed, the estimates needed to be completely redone and reviewed. Ideally, their head estimator would be able to go into their software, make a change, and it would update automatically across applicable estimates.
Each home floor plan has customizable options. When a customer wanted to compare options (i.e. different types of flooring), each one would have to be figured out separately. When the estimate was presented to the customer, if they wanted to swap out options, the estimate would need to be done again.
Ultimately, Winslow Homes needed a scalable software asset that their salespeople could use to collaborate with customers in the moment—with customizable options at their fingertips. Ideally, they wanted a system that reduced errors, and where an administrator could keep up with an ever-changing market by updating pricing and other important information without needing a developer.
Winslow Homes collaborated with RoleModel Software to develop a formula-driven and customizable software solution that facilitated process improvement. The team translated the head estimator’s expertise into a system that enabled Winslow Homes’ salespeople to produce the estimates for their clients while minimizing the number of mistakes from transferring information; now, everything they need is in one place.
Their custom solution has unified their segmented workflow and enables clearer home customization selections. Salespeople can imagine “what if?” scenarios with customers at the touch of a button—allowing them to see what options are available in their new home immediately and how that would affect pricing. When clients are satisfied with their choices, the tool creates a well-branded customer take-home sheet with all their home’s information.
When a customer decides to proceed with their home, the tools built into Winslow Homes’ new software will use their selected options to build out the details of the contract. In the past, this step had the most risk for error, but with their new software, every customization the client chooses drops into the contract.
RoleModel’s Craftsmen-led team delivered the software in just eight weeks, allowing Winslow Homes to get back to doing what they do best—building beautiful homes for their clients.
These days, with a more efficient process, Winslow Homes’ head estimator can spend his time building options and upgrades into the system, and their salespeople can work with a customer collaboratively and get an estimate and contract in under an hour. Winslow Homes’ new system is designed so they don’t need a developer to make changes. Also, administrators can make any necessary revisions or update options, allowing their head estimator to shift from doing all the estimates to enabling others to do them. Because all the information is in one system, the possibility for mistakes and other input errors has been drastically reduced.
Winslow Homes’ custom software solution delivered the ability for administrators to be able to update and change information as necessary without the need for rework. Their software asset is scalable; as the partnership continues, it can grow in sophistication.
Additionally, Winslow Homes and RoleModel Software’s partnership is ideal because of their similar values—both companies specialize in customization and provide a high level of customer service, with the client involved throughout the process. This aligned partnership resulted in a sustainable software solution that helps Winslow Homes serve their customers to the best of their ability.
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