Before we get to the nuts of bolts of roof measurement options and costs, consider the process of technology adaptation. Sometimes the simplest things take time to accept.
In the early 1900s mass-produced automobiles, a new invention, were all the rage and people of means clambered to own their own Model T. With their livelihoods at stake, former coachmen quickly learned to operate the new “horseless carriages.” Now, as chauffeurs and drivers, they were able to fill a “need” of well-to-do car owners who were too apprehensive to operate the new technology by themselves. Eventually, the owners gave it a try and quickly realized that driving was a cinch.
This led to reasoning that might have made them rich in the first place… Why pay someone to drive your car when it’s so easy (and fun) to drive it yourself? Before long the personal chauffeur became a thing of the past, only showing up occasionally at weddings, high school proms, diplomatic summits, and red carpet galas.
Today almost every single adult in North America, every day, comfortably and confidently sits behind the wheel of a fast, powerful, complex machine. Among a car’s 30,000 parts are various computers or “electronic control units” running the engine and transmission, applying the brakes, rolling up windows, unlocking doors, and so on. Yet we operate these miracles of modern technology almost by second nature. Designers and engineers have made it that easy to do.
Now for the analogy...
Why would a roofing contractor pay a “chauffeur” to create a roof report? Well, letting a 3rd-party company do your roof measurements might be convenient. It’s fairly cheap, too, and you can always pass the cost along to the client. That is if you win the bid. It’s pretty accurate and you don’t have to wait too long to receive the report, although it could take up to a few days after a big storm, when you really need to have your report sooner, preferably instantly!
Don’t be timid about technology
Perhaps the biggest reason a roofing contractor would defer to a 3rd-party for roof reports is that those services have the technology and aptitude to generate measurements based on satellite and aerial imagery. After all, it’s high-tech stuff they’re dealing with, right? It can’t be that easy to harness such advanced aerospace and aeronautical engineering. You’re just a roofing contractor focusing on what you know best – working atop homes and buildings, taking risks, and getting the job done. If you don’t feel like trucking out to the client’s house with a ladder and a Rolatape, go ahead and let the brainiacs with computer science degrees send signals up to Sputnik, request images of Earth’s surface, then apply geospatial mathematical calculations to the street address you gave them. They’ll geek-up all the data and spit you out a nice measurement report. Whewwww! You’re glad you didn’t have to do that, right?
Meanwhile, it’s lunchtime and you’re thinking, “How do I get to that Italian deli?” You pull out your phone; search Guido’s Market; tap “Street View” to make sure that’s the right place; then tap “Directions” and follow the map. You’ll be there in 14 minutes. Dude! This is essentially how DIY roofing software works!
Fire your "chauffeur"
So, consider this next time you think about relinquishing control to a 3rd party… Aren’t you being a little bit like one of those well-to-do automobile owners of the early 1900s? Are you hiring a 3rd party because you’re resisting the prospect of operating new technology yourself? Stop. Your barrier to high-tech is as minimal as finding your way to Guido’s Market!
Today, nothing prevents roofing contractors from doing accurate, unlimited roof measurements at far less cost, remotely from anywhere with satellite, aerial, drone or blueprint images. And it’s quick and easy with portable roofing software technology. With a subscription-based software like iRoofing and your tablet or phone, you can easily do unlimited roof reports by yourself saving hundreds if not thousands of dollars over the course of a year compared to using a 3rd-party service which charges you a fee each time.
The bottom line
Think of it this way. If your average profit on a roof job is 10%, a $5,000 job earns you $500. So, if you spend $500/month on 3rd-party roof reports, you’ll need to generate $5,000 in new business to make up for it. Otherwise, it will be like you did a $5,000 job and made nothing… and that’s just to cover the expense of roof reports.
On the other hand, with unlimited roof measurement software you can do as many reports as you wish at one, low, fixed monthly price that is far less costly than roof reports. Not sure how serious your new prospect it about doing a roof replacement? Don’t sweat it. Knock out a report and an estimate, even a new roof simulation in very little time, at no added cost. Present your impressive proposal and get that prospect off the fence! Bid more jobs, increase your closing ratio and take control of your roofing reports… it’s as easy as driving your truck.
Watch out for anything “FREE”
Even more compromising are free services that let you or a homeowner do a quick perimeter measurement. Then the service inserts themselves between you and your customer, taking a percentage of the revenue from your roof project, all in the name of facilitating the lead. That’s a big price for you to pay. And what if the 3rd-party service makes a mistake? (It happens!) When they do, think of how convenient it would be if you had digital access to a drawing that you can verify while you’re in the field. If you need to adjust any specifications, you can do it right then and there, but you really didn’t need that 3rd party in the first place. With a DIY mobile application, you’ll become proficient at measurements, estimates, and simulations rapidly thanks to great training and support from software consultants who are always at your service.
Now is the time to take control
There has never been a better time to take the wheel and take control of your technology-driven roof measurements, detailed and accurate project estimates, digital sales presentations and digitally-assisted customer management. You just need to take that next step.