EstiMate 2011 Feature Of The Day: Group And Ungroup Line Items (Video)

In EstiMate 2, line item groups were introduced that allowed you to create groups of items that showed up as a single item on your estimate. This was really helpful, except for when you’d created a group item and wanted to “unroll” it onto your quote – or if you had items on your quote that you wanted to “group” after you’d created them.

In EstiMate 2011, you can group and ungroup items at will. Watch this video to see how!


EstiMate 2011: Customer Dashboard In Action (Video)

When I first wrote about the new customer dashboard in EstiMate 2011, we got a flurry of requests for more information.

Today I’ve made a video that shows the Customer Dashboard in action for you, and some of the new features that are available with it, such as notes, file attachments, customer metrics, and the merging of customers and their histories.  This overview shows you how this insanely powerful new tool can give you laser-like focus on your work, your customers, and their value to your business.


EstiMate 2011 Feature Of The Day: Service Version Of The Multi-User Server (Video)

The Multi-User Server is the program that allows multiple copies of EstiMate to all connect to the data files on one machine.

Due to the fact that it is an actual Windows program that must be running in the background, someone always has to be logged into that machine for it to be running.  Not only is this a pain for the network administrator, who has to log in and start the server in the morning, but it’s also a security risk because that user has to remain logged in, reducing security to a password-protected screen saver.

With EstiMate 2011 we’ve written a Windows Service version of the server that, once installed, is “always on” and nobody has to be logged in for EstiMate users throughout the  network to connect to it.

This 2 minute video demonstrates the service version of the server.


How To Get Fast Support From The EstiMate Community

We are very excited to announce the new EstiMate Software Customer Service Channel on!

For many years we have offered the EstiMate Cafe discussion group as a place for customers and friends to get together and discuss EstiMate support issues, ask how-to questions, and connect with each other.  We’ve tried forum software of all different stripes, and ultimately have found that they are mostly cumbersome to use and don’t really provide the tools we’d like to offer.

Customer Profile: Sunny Neon Sign Systems, Pleasant Hill, CA

Interview With: Alice Miller & Matthew Kalyani, Owners

How did you get into the sign business?

My brother Oscar purchased the business in the late 80′s from the original owner, who established the business as a wholesale Neon Shop in the late 1960s. At that time, Matthew was employed to as an Apprentice Glass Bender.

In the early 1990’s Matthew and Partner Alice purchased the business from Oscar when he decided to pursue another career. At that time there were just the two employees: Matthew, Alice and the shop dog. Matthew was the primary contact for the sales and he would bend the glass while Alice would bombard and handle the office duties.

EstiMate 2011 Feature Of The Day: Drop-Down Lists Sorted By Category (Video)

We’ve gotten a lot of requests for sorting the drop-down lists by category inside the plugins themselves, and that’s been implemented in EstiMate 2011.

So now, instead of just looking through a huge list of items by name, you can fly down to the proper category and then select the item you are looking for.

Check out this 1.5 minute video to see how it works!


EstiMate 2011 Feature Of The Day: Wide Format Material Waste Calculations (Video)

With EstiMate 2011, the Wide Format Inkjet Plugin is getting some hardcore material waste calculation logic.

When we debuted the Flatbed Digital Printing plugin, one of it’s key features was material waste calculation, taken from art to science.  This is being introduced into the Wide Format Inkjet Plugin with EstiMate 2011.  Watch this 1.5 minute video to learn more!

If you don’t know about EstiMate 2011 yet, read the complete announcement here.


EstiMate 2011 Complete New Feature List

EstiMate 2011 will be released October 1 – read the full announcement here.

Many folks have been asking us for a complete feature list in addition to the “feature of the day” blogs.

I’ve been struggling with how to present it, because it’s so long, and finally decided the best way would be to break it into “big picture,” “significantly helpful,” and “useful additions” features.  Then, as I write new articles about individual features, I can hyperlink the item in this list over to that new blog entry.  So… keep up with this list and you can learn as we go…

These features represent literally thousands of person-hours of effort, and I’m beyond excited to get them released with EstiMate 2011!


EstiMate 2011 Feature Of The Day: Discount Line Items

Discount Line Items are a really cool new feature in EstiMate 2011.

With Discount Line Items, you can discount only a portion of an estimate rather than the whole thing.  In previous versions, there was only one discount field (for the whole quote), but EstiMate 2011 adds the ability to fine tune your discounting.  Ken asked the other day about discounting all but shipping on an estimate, so that’s the example I’ll use to show this to you.