Liberty Electric Implements mobile Crew Daily Reports
Liberty Electric has one mission, and that is to “drastically improve how public works construction is managed, implemented and accounted for.” With over 25 years of construction experience, Liberty understands the complexities within the construction industry and has a reputation for consistently delivering projects on time at a competitive cost.
In the past few years Liberty has grown substantially as they acquired new business. With the growth and success, they faced challenges that many contractors experience during rapid growth, including connecting field to office to ensure efficiency during key business processes. The lack of data connectivity became more inefficient, costly, and slowed down operations.
Liberty needed a construction-specific technology solution for time collection and payroll that would increase efficiency and accuracy, automate processes and improve communications.
One of their challenges was collecting accurate labor time from the field. As the company grew and field crews expanded, the foremen spent considerably more time keying in data, and manually matching cost codes.
Another challenge was the lack of integration with the existing time collection solution, which did not provide a drop-down list of cost codes. That required the back office to generate and distribute weekly cost code reports to the field. Even with current lists, the manual data entry of cost codes left room for data entry errors that were only realized when the back office entered these timecards. The duplication of effort from rekeying the data into payroll increased the opportunity for new errors, and it took 8 hours to key weekly crew hours into payroll.
The Outdated Time-Collection Process
Liberty’s foremen had been using a mobile form to enter crew hours and cost codes each day. At the end of each week, individual timecards were submitted to the office manager to prepare payroll. Each timecard could have 10 or more cost codes per day, which resulted in thousands of rows of time entry that had to be manually rekeyed. It could take a foreman 3-4 hours each week to type crew hours into the mobile forms, and manually look up cost codes because the mobile form did not offer that functionality.
Once complete, all timecards were then emailed to the project manager for approval. The project manager would review and forward approved timecards to the office manager who then had to manually key the data into payroll – a process that took eight hours to complete. The Controller then had to open and manually review each timecard.
There was potential for data entry errors before and after payroll was processed. If an incorrect cost code had been keyed in, it would interrupt the payroll process and the payroll manager would request the correct code from the project manager.
The Goal to Connect Data
Liberty wanted a web-based construction-specific technology solution for time collection and payroll that would increase efficiency and accuracy, automate processes and improve communications. The company had several goals to overcome the time collection and data-entry issues.
• a modern, scalable time-collection solution that integrated with payroll.
• a simple solution for foremen and project managers, with minimal input requirements to prevent unnecessary errors.
• a web-based, time-collection solution that would scale in parallel with Liberty’s growth.
Moving to the Cloud
When COVID-19 hit, we found that we were already set up, already ready to go. We were already using TEAMS for communication between our offices, so internally it didn’t rock us like it did a lot of people that were struggling to work from home. We were already doing it. We didn’t even have an equipment issue. Everything seemed to go very smoothly.
Brenda Baldwin, Controller Liberty Electric
Rapid Implementation, Testing, and Go-Live
Liberty selected the COINS mCDR solution for time collection because it was built for field construction. The timeline to select and implement the mCDR solution was incredibly fast because Liberty employees were motivated to solve their industry needs with an industry solution.
December 21, 2020
COINS mCDR was installed
December 23, 2020
Implementation meeting for COINS mCDR
December 24, 2020
Data was tested in a training environment and then copied over to the production environment
December 31, 2020
Liberty Electric was provided with usernames and passwords, along with instructions to download COINS mCDR
January 4, 2021
Field crews began using COINS mCDR for the next payroll period
Once I had the information I needed and the program, I was able to get it implemented right away.
Brenda Baldwin, Controller, Liberty Electric
User Adoption Was Seamless
Liberty experienced no issues during implementation or testing, and the process went smoothly. COINS mCDR was readily adopted and quickly improved operations by reducing duplicate manual entry. It has also reduced errors in coding timecards.
Liberty Electric Experienced Immediate Benefits
• Automated processes: With COINS mCDR the foremen have access to all active cost codes for each job. This eliminated the need for the Controller to send reports each week to foremen with new cost codes.
• User Adoption: COINS mCDR was deployed on January 4, 2021 and was readily accepted by field crews and by the back office. All users of mCDR could complete and submit time on the first day of use.
• Time and Cost savings: Administrative tasks for foremen have been reduced on average by 90% weekly. Review and approval time has been reduced by 75% for project managers, and payroll has reduced processing time by 87.5% on a weekly basis.
The Benefits of COINS Construction Cloud Software
COINS software provides full transparency in real-time, and that helps companies protect project margins. Project managers, general contractors, and specialty contractors can access data from the field and manage costs by location, by trade, and by pre-construction versus warranty.
The COINS environment is designed to scale with customer growth. If increased data requirements demand more resources, space, and computer power, they can be added with a few mouse clicks. COINS customers enjoy the benefits of a hosted solution allowing them to focus on other strategic goals.
COINS’ relationship with Microsoft provides reliable service, agility, automation and secure https encrypted connection. Our clients who utilize Azure Active Directory for authentication can login with a single sign-on and leverage existing multi-factor authentication already used to access their Windows environment.
Contact COINS to learn how our mobile Crew Daily Reports can eliminate duplicate data entry, create automated processes, increase efficiencies and reduce costs.