What is a Production Rate?

Learn what a production rate is, and how they can help speed up estimating.

Weston Zimmerman avatar
Written by Weston Zimmerman
Updated over a week ago

Production Rates are an extremely effective tool to speed up estimating, as well as take all the experience out of your head and put it into a system that anyone can use.
The basic concept is that you build a formula for an item in your item catalog. Then when building an estimate, instead of doing the math in your head to see how much mulch you need, you simply plug in the square footage of the area to be mulched, and the Production Rate generates the total quantity of mulch you'll need for that amount of square footage.

For instance, let's say we build a Production Rate like this:

  • 1 cubic yard of mulch covers 100' sq ft of area.

The text in bold is the formula. The text in italics is the units.

So now when I go to build an estimate and I add mulch to my estimate, I can click the little calculator beside the quantity field. This will launch a popup where I can simply enter my square footage.

​For example:

Let's say I enter 850 sq ft in the popup. The system will do the math and automatically populate the quantity field for that mulch at 8.5 cubic yards.

See how that works!? 😁

Here's a video describing this:

Step by Step:

Step 1:

In the main sidebar, click on Item Catalog under System Setup. Then search for the item for which you want to create a Production Rate.

Step 2:

Select the Item.

Step 3:

Now you're ready to set the Production Rate. Click on the little calculator beside the Production Rate field.

Step 4:

The field on the far right will be prepopulated with whatever the unit is that the item is sold by, like cubic yard, square foot, each, etc.

The other three fields need to be filled out by you. In this example, mulch is sold by the cubic yard. 1 cubic yard covers 100 square feet. So the Quantity is 100, the Units is sq ft and the Per is 1.

Click Update after you've filled out the fields.

Step 5:

Click the green Save icon.

Step 6:

That's all for creating the Production Rate. Now let's use it in a new estimate.

Create a new estimate and a workarea and then search for the item for which we just created a Production Rate.

Add the item to the workarea.

Click on the Calculator beside the Qty field.

Step 7:

This creates a popup where you'll see the installation rate that we created when we set the Production Rate in the Item Catalog. Enter the square footage that needs to be mulched for this job, then hit Update.

And that's how you use a Production Rate. It uses your predetermined formula to calculate quantities for each new job, as you can see below.

A Few Notes on How to Set Up Production Rates:

We encourage using production rates as much as possible because they really help increase efficiency, allowing you to save time when you create an estimate. They also increase your accuracy in estimating.
An additional side benefit is that it helps shorten the learning curve for new salespeople when they first create estimates. An experienced person can build all the production rates for your organization and then a new salesperson can simply measure things, enter square footage into a production rate, and get accurate quantities that they would not have had the experience to come up with on their own.

A crew's experience, equipment, etc can all make a massive impact on a production rate. We recommend using your own production rates instead of someone else's. Everyone's production rate is unique to their company. They are not necessarily universal because of all those variables.

If you've never built any production rates for your team, you can find your own production rates by using a simple spreadsheet. We've created a sample sheet for production rates on labor to install a patio that you can play with to get an idea, or even use the spreadsheet to come up with your own production rates for any item.


You'll need to download the spreadsheet to actually enter your own info. When you open it in the link above you will not be able to edit it. You will want to download it under the file button.

We'd encourage you to revisit these production rates each season to see if you've been becoming more efficient and update your production rates in SynkedUP accordingly!

If you have any questions, hit us up in the blue chat box in the lower right corner.
Until next time! πŸ‘‹


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