Our Civil Engineering case study highlights Trimat Material Testing, a civil engineering company that has been operating since 2004 & specializes in concrete and asphalt maintenance inspections on roadways and runways. Their customers include municipalities, contractors, property managers, builders and construction material suppliers. As you would expect, the majority of their service work takes place out of the office and in the field. Due to their workforce being so widely distributed, there was rarely a need to come to the office, except when they had to write up their reports. That is until they found Fulcrum.
Before switching to Fulcrum, Trimat had laptops assigned to their service employees to write up their inspections in Microsoft Access, on an old system that was built eight years prior. Inspectors in the field would conduct an on-site inspection, and then, while in their car or back in the office, write up their report in the Access database. This process was time consuming and often led to errors in data and incomplete information. Trimat looked into rebuilding the Access system or building a new in-house system and had received quotes exceeding $10,000.
Searching for a Solution
When Trimat was looking for a replacement, there were a few important must-haves on their requirement list. First, they needed a more modern solution that would account for the inspector's GPS location. Second, they wanted it to work on a smartphone. Third, the solution needed to make image capture and storage easier. Lastly, it needed to provide for generating reports, with photos, in the field and not require more time back at the office.
"We researched other options on the market, but they didn't have the features Fulcrum had." Said Chris Bacchi, Vice President of Trimat. "With Fulcrum, if I want to change something on my form, I don't have to get on the phone with anyone. It is simple to modify myself."
"We now have little downtime. There are a lot less headaches for everyone. Fulcrum certainly saves more time."
Results & Benefits
Once Trimat found Fulcrum and developed their apps, they held training with their managers and inspectors. Managers found it quick and easy to remotely approve records and provide quality control around inspections. Record exports and report generation could now be done remotely while the inspector was still on site. The increased speed at which clients received their inspections resulted in faster payments made to Trimat. Fulcrum is ultimately helping Trimat get paid faster for its work.
"I definitely notice more responsiveness from my employees," says Bacchi. "They are more efficient on their reporting. Reports are fresh and provide more detailed information. I don't miss any reports like I did in the past and I don't have to chase people down later. We now have little downtime. There are a lot less headaches for everyone. Fulcrum certainly saves more time."
Inspectors can stay in the field and get paid for doing their work, not error-prone administrative tasks that wasted precious time. There is no need to re-inspect or correct inspections later, because the jobs are completed at the project site. The use of Fulcrum has ultimately reduced the time Trimat inspectors spend completing inspections for clients and Trimat is now able to pass these savings on to their clients.