Frequently asked questions
How to Add and remove a bookmark
Bookmark by Toolbar
First, you could use the tool bar.
Select a component in the Estimate window or a heading in the WBS and simply click on the flag icon (red, above) and the default highlight color will be applied to that component(s). If you hold down Control, you can select multiple lines in the Estimate window and apply the same highlight to them all. Click the flag icon again and the highlighting is removed. If you click on the down arrow next to the flag icon (blue, above) you can select a specific bookmark. And of course, repeating the process removes that specific bookmark.
Bookmark by Right Clicking
If you select a component in the Estimate window or in the WBS and right click on it, you can select Bookmark in the menu that opens, and the default bookmark will be applied. If you slide to the right in menu while hovering over Bookmark, a drop-down list will open, and you can select the Bookmark of your choice. As before, repeating these steps will remove the bookmarks.
While multiple items can be selected in the Estimate window, only a single item can be selected in the WBS.
Bookmarks are not inherited by the child components.
In the estimate window, the flag icon denotes a bookmarked item.
In the WBS, this icon denotes a bookmarked item:
At the moment, bookmark cannot be renamed.
How to add your Company Logo to your reports
Sigma provides a straightforward way to add your company logo to your reports. You can make this a default setting in your reports, and the logo will be shown in the upper right-hand corner of all reports.
Click on the Reports tab in the tool bar, then click on Settings. In the Edit report settings dialogue box, click on the Logo tab and browse to the logo file you want to use. (*.jpg and *.pdf are the default file types but *.png also works.) After selecting the logo file, click on OK.
We recommend that the default settings for height and width be accepted. Also, it is sometimes necessary to reset report variables before the logo will show. If you need to reset the report variables, return to the Settings window, click on the Report Variables tab, click the Reset variables button, and then click OK.
How to import CSV or Past from Excel
There are several important things to keep in mind before you start the import:
You need to have an estimate open, usually a blank one. I prefer to use the Large Estimate template in Sigma. (Click File, New, then pick the Large Estimate template). You can also import to an existing estimate as well.
If you have columns in your spreadsheet that do not correspond to the standard columns in Sigma, you need to create custom columns for this info before you import so the custom columns will be available to import to. For instance, you might have cost codes, phases, areas, vendor names, etc. that require a custom field (column) in Sigma. (And remember, you can have unlimited number of custom fields.)
Any columns in your spreadsheet that are to be imported as numbers need to be formatted as numbers in excel before importing or Sigma will not recognize them as numbers and zeros will be entered in that column.
The row where the import will start is important. You may have column headings in your excel sheet and you would not import these. Select the first row of data in the From row drop down box.
Importing from csv file
Excel is invariably setup in a horizontal manner, with the categories labor, material, subcontractor, equipment, etc occupying cells in the same row. Sigma is arranged with categories in a vertical fashion, with each category on a separate line, so your spreadsheet needs to be rearranged
While this may seem complicated, it really isn’t. You are simply restructuring your spreadsheet so that the value for each category is in its own row. This can be done by using a macro if your sheet is consistently laid out, or the work can be given to a junior estimator, or even a clerical staff member. And it is only for the categories that you need to do this: labor, material, equipment, subcontractor, etc.
In the picture above you’ll notice that a column was added on the left named Level. By adding a Level column, Sigma can use this info to build your WBS. What this means is that when imported, you will have a heading (number 1) of Temporary Utilities, with all the other components grouped below it, at level 2.
The same effect – that of creating your WBS – can be achieved by assigning a position number and importing to the Position column.
What are the categories and how could I use them?
Categories are used in Sigma for various functions: for reporting on materials needed, or hours required; for adding overhead; for establishing profit; for automatic redistribution of costs; and for organizing Insight views.
Categories (like unit names and production unit names) are stored as *.dat files the Data folder and can be edited by going to File, Settings, Lists. Ctrl + I will open the settings window as well.
Unlike many estimating programs, Sigma does not limit you to the typical categories of Labor, Material, Equipment, Subcontractors. Sigma let’s you have as many categories as you need to organize your estimate the way you want it. Here’s a pretty basic example of why this matters: suppose you have a supplier that gives you a good discount – a better discount than he gives anyone else. You could lump the costs from this vendor in with all the other Materials and mark them up competitively, but you would be leaving money on the table. Namely, the amount of the additional discount he gives you. In Sigma, simply create a new category – MaterialFromJoe for example – and mark it up separately from the other materials.
With an estimate open, press Ctrl+I to open the Settings dialogue box.
Click on Lists in the left-side toolbar and then, under System Lookup Lists, choose Categories and press Edit.
Choose the Values tab.
Click on Add, type in the name of the new category, and click OK.
Close the Settings window.
TIP: to remove a category, choose Remove instead of Add. Deleting a category from the list does not delete it from any saved estimates in which it was used.
To turn on automatic addition of new categories (add categories “on the fly” in your estimate):
Click on the Values tab, as described above.
Mark the checkbox Add unlisted values to the list under Options.
TIP: If you also mark the checkbox Prompt before adding unlisted value, you will be prompted to add the category.
Click OK again.
To change a category already in use in your estimate:
In the Resources tab in the Estimate window, click on the line item whose category you want to change.
Click on the drop-down arrow under the Change category button in the Quick Access Toolbar and choose the new value for category.
Or right click on the line you want to change and choose a new value for category.