The Changing Face of Metal Service Centers

A growing number of metal service centers are moving beyond simply providing stock to offer cutting and other value-added services.  Like many fabricators, these companies invest in machinery and software packages to accelerate cutting time, increase part quality, reduce scrap, and automate manual steps. All good things. However, these tools fall short when it comes to the front-end of the business by failing to address what matters most: sales.

CAD/CAM nesting, 3D design, offline programming, and similar software technologies are focused on the shop floor and production-ready parts. While these programs are generally very good at what they are designed to do, they lack the focus and functionality to adequately address the specific needs of estimating and sales teams.

Too often suppliers of ERP, MRP, nesting and other software systems develop quoting software as an afterthought or watered-down add-on module. The result is a backward approach that often falls short. Many of these companies fail to understand the difference between production and quoting. Consequently, fully engineered drawings or input from programming are often required to generate estimates – creating the exact bottleneck they are all trying to avoid.

Quoting Speed & Accuracy

In today’s competitive environment the first quote in usually wins. As a result, increasing sales and growing the business requires empowering your road warriors, estimators, and inside sales team to create winning and profitable quotes quickly, accurately, and independently of other departments. Requiring the involvement of programming or engineering to produce a quote, for example, delays the process by days or even weeks. To combat this, the focus must shift to non-production ready quotes. This means creating quotes in minutes directly from PDFs, bent JPEGS, and even napkin drawing. The answer is found in a tool developed specifically for fabrication estimating and sales. SecturaSOFT ( has separated geometry from quoting. 

“While one can still quote and nest from geometry, you may not always get it,” explained SecturaSOFT COO, Brad Stropes. “We have created a way to manipulate geometry without a complex CAD System. Our software pulls information from a takeoff, or scanned drawing and creates an estimate just as well as an engineered drawing.  In addition, one can include secondary operations such as welding, bending, and build complex assemblies from a simple JPEG.”

Right Tool for the Job

You wouldn’t head down to that gas store on the corner for a bite of sushi and you certainly wouldn’t outfit a new Ferrari with cheap retreads. So why rely on your nesting or ERP provider for sales quoting? Add-on quoting programs that require input from engineering, programming, and detailed geometry only serve to create bottlenecks – not eliminate them.

SecturaSOFT is changing this by delivering a top-notch premium product to impact the business significantly.  Forward-thinking companies are taking steps along the direction other industries are going – to increase sales, throughput, and margins with a digital tool that doesn’t require months or even years to obtain a true return on investment.

“There are many fine tools in the industry focused on production,” concluded Stropes.  “But the industry needed one that truly understands estimators and is built 100% for them.  To avoid a big step backward, one must have the ability to estimate quickly and accurately, from any information the customers provide.”

There are a few add-on quoting solutions on the market that require intervention from programming, engineering, and 3D design software to create quotes. When it comes to high run production, they are adequate solutions. However, because they often require fully engineered drawings, this creates needless obstacles for to creating fast quotes.

Sales and estimating must have the freedom to create winning and profitable quotes from anything from a 3D model to a napkin drawing copied into an email.  This is no small task.  Fortunately, SecturaSOFT has the solution.


For information, or to schedule a demonstration, visit or call 513-813-8111 or 844-637-8371.


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