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The Fulcrum Focus

Stay in the know with thought leadership, product updates, and latest news on field inspection and data collection topics.

Construction CEO: “I’m paying $20 an hour for workers who don’t know anything.”

The labor shortage has put general contractors in a rough spot – not only are they having to settle for workers who are inexperienced, but they also must pay them top dollar. Understanding that experienced workers are both in short supply and incredibly costly, contractors will be forced to make do with novices, temps, and […]

Working safer, working smarter: How digital inspections improve OSHA compliance and safety outcomes

OSHA needs proof that companies are doing the right things for employees in terms of health and safety. But how is your company supposed to determine what is right? Being OSHA compliant can be a challenge — companies not only have to provide policies, training and checklists that comply with OSHA requirements, but also bear […]

How digitization supercharges checklists for utility companies

The timely and hazardous nature of utility fieldwork demands consistent workflows that promote security and rigor. Look no further than tower inspections, where standardized SOPs ensure that different field teams carry out their tasks in the same way each time to get the job done effectively, efficiently, and safely. Alongside this consistency, on-the-ground teams still […]

New feature alert: File attachments!

File Attachments in Fulcrum Great news! Today we’re announcing a new file attachment feature that will save inspectors, data collectors, and administrators a ton of work when they need to manage document-based information. Documents are now just another data type: You can add them to any section of your Fulcrum app. If your inspectors or […]

Eyes in the sky, boots on the ground: Fulcrum and Sitemark partner for commercial solar installation and maintenance

Here’s a cool mash-up: AI-powered aerial data platform Sitemark now uses Fulcrum to make it easier and more effective than ever for companies to collect field data, clearly visualize site anomalies, and take action to fix them – all on a mobile device. About Sitemark Sitemark is one of the world’s most respected aerial data […]

The hidden costs of workplace injuries

Any company can pay lip service to safety, but the ones that actually prioritize it are rewarded with stellar safety records, great reputations and low experience modification rates (EMR). So how do you make the jump from lip service to a robust safety program that can reduce workplace injuries? When getting buy-in for their safety […]

Protecting field teams from electrical hazards: 5 things you need to know

Every year, thousands of workers are injured or killed by electrical hazards, a situation made more tragic because many of these incidents are preventable. Some sobering statistics illustrate the extent and seriousness of the problem: According to U.S. Bureau of Labor statistics analyzed by the Electrical Safety Foundation International (ESFI), a non-profit organization that promotes […]

Fulcrum is proud to be SOC 2 compliant

UPDATE: Since this announcement was originally posted, Fulcrum has maintained SOC 2 Type 2 compliance. As part of our commitment to provide a robust, industry-leading platform for our customers, we are pleased to announce that Fulcrum is SOC 2 compliant (Type 1). About SOC SOC for Service Organizations are assurance reports on the internal controls of […]

It’s time to leave spreadsheets behind

Spreadsheets have their place, but it’s not in the field. They’re great for accounting, and even analyzing or visualizing certain types of information. But they’re terrible for mobile data collection — especially when you’re feeding that data into a GIS platform. Sure, spreadsheets are a step up from paper, but they’re just as error prone.  […]

Leveraging location intelligence for actionable insights

Every day, your mobile teams are out in the field, conducting inspections, installing and maintaining infrastructure, following SOPs and ensuring compliance. You may not realize it — or, if you’re ahead of the curve, you do — but every one of those actions generates data.  Data that you can use to improve the safety, quality, […]

How data collection software creates digital transformation for utility companies

The work your field technicians do at the front lines is core to your organization, and leveraging the information they collect in the process can help your company make better decisions at every level. That makes your field teams the perfect catalyst to drive your utility’s digital transformation. By adopting new technologies, not only will […]

How Biden’s infrastructure bill will shake up utility and telecom companies

Touted by the federal government as the biggest public investment since the 1960s — when interstate highways were built and the Space Race was won — President Biden’s American Jobs Plan (AJP) aims to create millions of jobs to modernize the country’s crumbling infrastructure and kickstart the economy after recent pandemic-related downturns. Of special interest […]

Preventing falls in construction

According to preliminary data from OSHA, fall protection was the most cited violation for 2020 — the 10th year in a row.  Unfortunately, there’s more to worry about than just citations here. Fatal falls to a lower level have been steadily rising since 2011, reaching 401 in 2019, accounting for more than 1 in 3 […]

How to streamline safety reporting at scale (without code)

In 2019, a staggering 2.8 million people suffered a workplace injury, and 5,333 workers died on the job, an average of 15 deaths every day. Outside the very real human cost of suffering, companies pay out millions each year in fines, legal fees and increased insurance premiums. “Boots on the ground” safety professionals are often […]

New feature announcement: Reference Files to drive higher performance, more consistency, and better outcomes

Fulcrum enables organizations to eliminate many cumbersome, inefficient paper processes from their workflows to increase the productivity, safety, and quality of their field operations. But some mobile users — especially those with particularly complex and dangerous jobs — have still needed to carry paper safety booklets and bulky SOPs for reference on project sites. Until […]

Integrating Fulcrum data with ArcGIS Online™

With the integration announced earlier this year, customers of Fulcrum and Esri™ can now get more value out of their investments in both platforms. By sending high-quality, real-time Fulcrum data into Esri, organizations can get a clearer picture of what’s happening on the ground, analyze their situation more effectively, and make better, more data-driven decisions. […]

G2 again names Fulcrum a leader in mobile forms automation

Fulcrum is mobile forms automation leader Nothing is more satisfying than hearing customers praise our platform. It tells us that we’re consistently adding value and helping them adapt to the challenges they face every day. In their just-released Spring 2021 Grid Report, G2, a leading peer-to-peer review site for business software, ranks Fulcrum as an […]

Location leverage: improving operational efficiency and profit margins with geospatial data

In a recent study conducted by Boston Consulting Group (BCG), 95% of executives across several industries in the United States, UK, Singapore and India said that mapping and geospatial data are important to achieving desired business results.  Ninety-five! “If you had asked six to seven years ago, I would have said geospatial data is nice […]

ICYMI: Increase productivity with new image processing features

Two great features that aid image processing have recently been added to the Fulcrum no-code application platform: Adding multiple photos from the gallery and renaming photos on download. No, these aren’t glamorous, but they increase productivity by streamlining repetitive processes — which means they’re important to our customers, and therefore to us as well. Adding […]

Build location-aware apps in minutes: maximize return on your GIS investment with Fulcrum

With the mobile revolution, more and more users in field roles are discovering the power of location-based data. Whether it is used to trigger a workflow or process, or simply help visualize information on a map, users — particularly those who work in the field — are increasingly demanding applications that use location-based data to […]

Manage utility infrastructure like your life depends on it

Recent snowstorms managed to cripple the second largest state in the continental United States. Overnight, millions were left without electricity, clean water, and food because the aging infrastructure and electrical grid weren’t built to withstand a storm of that magnitude. Unfortunately, with extreme weather conditions becoming increasingly common around the world, being proactive about how […]

New feature: Blurring faces with no-code AI

As of today, you can set a Fulcrum photo field to automatically inspect any photos you take to see if they include faces and, if they do, to blur them out (or “de-identify” them) automatically. (If you’re the type of person who wants to jump straight to doc, go for it.) It’s a cool feature, […]

3 must-haves for better asset management

How much time do your skilled workers spend sitting around on your project sites, waiting for equipment? According to some estimates, it’s about 90 minutes per day.  In fact, according to study by the Construction Industry Institute (CII) study, employees on a large construction project only spend about 27% of their day doing direct work.  […]

The benefits of cloud technology

From the beginning of 2020 to the beginning of 2021, the way that many organizations do business changed dramatically, seemingly overnight. Remote work became the norm as offices went dark, and people learned that many tasks could be completed with little (or no) face-to-face interaction.  ‍ The cloud technology that has enabled this transformation has […]

It’s 5 o’clock. Do you know where your assets are?

An estimated $300 million to $1 billion worth of construction equipment is stolen each year, and less than 25% of it is recovered. And the average employee spends 90 minutes per day looking for equipment and tools. (For a 50-person construction company, that’s 18,000 hours per year.)  A robust asset-management strategy is critical for loss […]

Need to lower your EMR? Here’s how

Your experience modification rate (EMR) is what insurance companies use to measure the risk of taking on your organization as a client. It compares your losses to what is expected in your industry: Injuries happen in construction — but companies that have more frequent or more serious injuries as other, similar companies in their state […]

3 reasons to adopt no-code apps for your construction company

New technologies have changed the way many organizations work, empowering them to reduce time spent on administrative tasks and increase the efficiency of their operations. Construction firms are beginning to benefit from these advances, too, with productivity-boosting mobile apps popping up on more and more job sites. No-code development platforms are enabling construction companies to […]

It’s time to eliminate the lowest-bidder requirement

You get what you pay for: It’s true when it comes to clothes, food, and especially when it comes to multimillion-dollar construction projects.  For too long, the lowest-bidder jobs that have been required by municipalities around the world meant that whoever could do the job for the least amount of money won the contract, which […]

Making our place in the Esri ecosystem

Today marks the first phase of a new, easier way to integrate Fulcrum and Esri™. Joint customers can now get more value from their existing Esri investments by extending their location intelligence capabilities beyond the specialized geographic information systems (GIS) user. I’d like you to picture the people on one of your teams performing tasks […]

After 2020, you can’t afford to do bad business

The Coronavirus pandemic caught almost everyone off guard in 2020. While some organizations were quick to adopt new technology that empowered their workforce to quickly ease into working from home, others struggled to acclimate to the new reality while maintaining a healthy cash flow.  Millions of people in the United States lost their jobs as […]

Want to hire the best talent? Equip them with the best tech

When talking about the construction industry, the tight labor market and shortage of skilled workers available to successfully fill roles mean that companies are often left scrambling to fill roles with workers who don’t fit the ideal employee profile, simply out of desperation to get their jobs done on time and on budget. Many Millennials […]

Three ways to improve mobile workforce management

A manager is only as effective as the team they’ve built, and ensuring they have the right tools to get the job done is part of being successful. That’s even more critical when those teams are out in the field and responsible for day-to-day tasks without a manager being physically present. If your team members […]

Is 2021 the year of the mobile workforce?

Everything about 2020 was strange. The way we worked, shopped, socialized, and learned was upended seemingly overnight. Most of us have since adapted (out of necessity). Tools like Zoom and Google have helped us work and learn from home. There is, however, a large subset of workers who don’t have the same luxury and were […]

Maps save lives: The importance of location-based data

Between the election and the pandemic, every American is probably well versed in U.S. geography. We’ve spent most of the year pouring over data that has analyzed where the virus is the most deadly, which states submitted their election results, and now, where the coronavirus vaccine is being deployed.  Having insight into location-based data has […]

10 Reasons to Try No-Code Apps for Your Mobile Workforce

It’s the end of the fourth quarter, which means business leaders everywhere are planning their goals for the new year. For some, it might be improving their safety record. For others, reducing costs and increasing efficiency and customer satisfaction. Whatever your 2021 business goals are, adopting no-code apps can bring you one step closer (many […]

Improving process improvement: Achieving maximum impact with minimal disruption

Organizations that continually increase efficiency, safety, and customer satisfaction all have this in common: They embrace process improvement.  Sometimes called business process management (BPM), business process improvement (BPI), continual improvement process (CIP) or business process re-engineering, process improvement is a business methodology aimed at minimizing errors and waste and increasing efficiency and productivity.  ‍ Actually, […]

5 checklists every construction site should have on hand

Construction is one of the most heavily regulated industries because of its inherent risks. According to the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA), one of every 5 workplace fatalities occurs on construction developments. Because they’re often working at height or with heavy machinery, construction workers must be diligent about following strict safety protocols to avoid […]

No-code development: confidence through collaboration

Businesses are embracing no-code development for its many benefits: It costs less than traditional software development, it increases their agility and productivity, and it takes strain off of their IT departments by enabling non-developers to create and quickly modify custom apps. But one of the most underrated benefits of using a no-code platform is the […]

Behind every technical problem is a human problem

Few things are more frustrating than being held up by technical problems. The laptop freezes. The vending machine breaks. The car doesn’t start. Knowing that your immediate future is now dependent on someone else — the IT guy, the repair tech, the auto mechanic — is such a helpless feeling. Like being stuck in limbo. […]

In praise of the checklist: an essential tool for safety and health

When was the last time you went grocery shopping without a checklist? How soon after did you have to go back for something you forgot? Checklists play an important role in our lives, not just by reminding us to buy milk — they also help us stay safe and healthy as we move about the world. […]

The value of location-based data for field organizations

When you call 911, what’s the first question they ask you?  What is your location?‍ Knowing where you are — and being able to share that information quickly — is crucial to getting the help you need in a timely manner.  Location matters. Not just in emergency situations, but in nearly all aspects of our […]

No-code app development: Helping ordinary people do extraordinary things

No code app development platforms are exploding in popularity, and with good reason. Mobile technology is enabling companies to improve the productivity, quality, and safety of their operations, and make more data-driven decisions than ever. The problem, however, is that the demand for software solutions is far outpacing the supply of software developers. Fortunately, most […]

Protecting the environment — and public health — with mobile technology

Keeping up with ever-changing environmental regulations can be a challenge, but for environmental engineering firms, it’s paramount for serving their clients as well as preserving the environment.  In fiscal year 2019, the Environmental Protection Agency required companies to invest more than $4.4 billion to control pollution (called injunctive relief) and pay more than $360 million […]

Obstacles to safety and health in field organizations

Field organizations face a unique set of challenges: From inclement weather to communication lag, all kinds of obstacles can delay your teams from getting the job done.  But more importantly, those obstacles can also pose a threat to their safety and health. Your mobile teams encounter many issues in their day-to-day lives — some predictable, […]

3 steps to establishing a quality culture in your mobile workforce

Establishing a quality culture within your mobile workforce is more important than ever. Employees who ranked their company culture low in terms of quality reported 46% more mistakes than those at companies that were ranked highly, and estimated that it takes an average of two hours to fix an error. 1 At a salary of […]

The problem with spreadsheets for field inspections

When you think about field inspections, what comes to mind?  Probably something like this: The issue with conducting field inspections with pen and paper is that it’s impractical. It creates a long list of problems and potential problems:  Illegible handwriting leads to data inaccuracies Paper is easily damaged or lost, necessitating rework Transcription takes time […]

Level up with Fulcrum: automating workflows, part IV

In part I of this series, we talked about the importance of productivity and speed. That puts a lot of pressure on the inspector to be quick — there’s no faster way to have people resent the time you spend “checking boxes” than to take a long time doing it. Yuck. There are few things […]

Improving efficiency, compliance, and quality with no-code property management apps

As a property manager, it’s your job to not only help your clients preserve the value of their property, but to ensure it stays in compliance with local ordinances. In many states, a code violation multiplies every day it goes unresolved. So a $1,000 violation, left unattended for a week, becomes an $8,000 violation, and so […]

Level up with Fulcrum: automating workflows, part III

In part I, we talked about increasing productivity in safety, quality, and other inspections. In part II, we talked about increasing rigor and speed without sacrificing quality. In this post, we’ll talk about speeding up your organization’s reaction time to events that happen in the field. Better situational awareness Imagine that a field worker gave […]

How field inspection management software helps demonstrate the benefits of your Quality Assurance and Quality Control programs

When it comes to quality, people tend to notice when things go wrong rather than when they’re going right.  Whether you’re monitoring construction-site compliance or inspecting engine parts, as quality professionals, you and your team are responsible for protecting your company’s reputation. But to be able to do your jobs effectively, people at every level […]

Level up with Fulcrum: automating workflows, part II

In our last post, we talked about how workflow automation can increase productivity in safety, quality, and other inspections. But inspections don’t just need to be fast. They also need to be rigorous. How do we achieve that balance? Increasing inspection speed and rigor without sacrificing flexibility To get speed and flexibility, we need to […]

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