Championing builders since 2000
You don’t often hear the owner of a small building firm say that they went into the construction because they liked doing paperwork and form filling or believed the business end to be stress-free. Adrian Wild, the founder of HBXL Building Software, certainly didn’t.
Having qualified as a civil engineer, Adrian moved into construction, setting up a building firm that clocked up over 300 extensions and around 80 new builds. The company expanded from one manager and a handful of contractors to a team of six managers and over 40 subcontractors, with a turnover of £4-5 million per annum.
A builder under pressure…
With success came greater responsibilities, more sleepless nights, more mouths to feed, tighter deadlines, more health and safety obligations… It was pretty overwhelming.
Adrian regularly worked late into the night and over weekends to turn round quotes for clients knowing that accuracy was crucial, especially with profit margins being so thin. And despite his best efforts and late-night number crunching, there was never any guarantee of winning the work.
If you want something doing…
He was convinced there must be another way to produce estimates. So he looked for an estimating software package designed for his size company – that would speed up his quoting without compromising on quality - but nothing fitted the bill.
So he set about writing his own software to estimate jobs and manage his business. Over a period of four years he honed the software with the help of his son-in-law (now HBXL’s chief developer) to the point where it was good enough to share with other building firms.
Out of small acorns…
And that was how HBXL Building Software was born back in 2000. EstimatorXpress 2019 is the 11th version of the estimating software. Not one for standing still, Adrian continues to encourage his now much larger development team to keep pushing the boundaries as the industry changes and technology improves. Not lightweight apps, but seriously hard-working software.
And Adrian didn’t stop at estimating. As a property developer, he’d forked out thousands on architect’s fees, spent hours sorting out his health and safety paper work, and laboured over a process to ensure the work and costs were agreed contractually with customers. And that’s where the idea for PlansXpress, Health & Safety Xpert and ContractsXpert came from. ProjectXpert followed on soon after. Then a partnership with the like-minded company behind CIA Accounts invoicing software.
Number one success…
HBXL Building Software was the first estimating software solution of its kind and has challenged competitors, who have come and gone, with value-for-money software solutions rigorously tested by builders and professionals, along with new features directly the result of customer feedback.
And we’ve been at the side of the small building firm in good times and bad. During the last recession the company saw higher than expected sales, as savvy businesses fought to keep their building firms afloat, using our software to save time, reduce errors, minimise stress and ultimately improve their profitability.
Adrian has been the voice of the hard working building firm for many years, speaking up at seminars and conferences and contributing to articles about planning permission, finance and investment. Alongside the company receiving many accolades, Adrian himself was recognised for his unfaltering service in 2016 by the Business Leader Magazine as one of 40 top Trailblazers in the South West. And in 2017 he was shortlisted for the NatWest Family Business Entrepreneur of the Year.Check out our accolades
Family business… team effort…
Of our 20+ brilliant team members there are five of the Wild family working with us today. His daughters play key roles in carrying Adrian’s legacy forward, brought up in a household immersed in the stressful building industry. All staff ideas are of value and rewarded and everyone is proud to be part of a business that is helping the building industry embrace technology and reap the benefits.
Who knows what the next 20 years hold for us. There is one certainty: HBXL will maintain an unwavering commitment to pushing the limits of software design, so that there’s no limit to where you can take your building business.