The Robert Henry Corporation needed a means of digitally capturing daily timesheet and field data, to more efficiently combat obstacles to productivity – like frustrating manual image collection, rekeying form data into ERPs, and incomplete reports.
After testing an alternative form solution, the Robert Henry Corporation turned to GoFormz to digitize their forms, data capture, and processing. With GoFormz, form data can be instantly reported on, completed forms are digitally stored, images can be easily input into forms, and documents are more thoroughly completed.
Founded in 1974, the Robert Henry Corporation provides commercial and industrial construction services, including directional drilling, high voltage electrical work, and facility builds and repairs. The Robert Henry team prioritizes quality services and project safety, while providing customers with “direct control” over project costs.
The Robert Henry Corporation provides its Indiana customers with quality services, industry expertise, and a dedication to job site safety. The Robert Henry team originally relied upon paper forms to document these services and provide historical project data – a medium that simply could not contain all of the types of data nor provide the functionality that their team required. Van Nussbaum, a Controller leading Robert Henry’s finance department, recalled the frustrations of capturing job site data and images using cumbersome paper documents. “We were using paper for everything,” Van explained. “We were using one of those cameras that was never charged, and we could never find a way to get the media where it needed to be.”
After being introduced to the mobile forms platform ProntoForms, Van made the decision to test drive digital data collection: “I was trying to find a way to do things electronically instead of with paper and pencil.” Unfortunately, using ProntoForms only added to their frustrations, as the platform failed to provide the functionality needed to support the Robert Henry team. “I was able to do some of the things I wanted it to do, but ProntoForms just didn’t have some of the functionality that I needed,” Van described of his ProntoForms experience. “We needed some things that their product could not in any way produce.” Van set out to find a solution that could provide the flexibility and functionality his team needed. Eventually, Van found GoFormz, and quickly signed up for an account.
The first form to be digitized was the Robert Henry employee timecard. With employees dispersed across three locations, the Robert Henry team had struggled to efficiently maintain and process staff timecards. “Timecards were always a challenge on Monday mornings, making sure they were all here,” Van recollected of their paper based process. Timecards were completed by crew leaders for each member of their team, then faxed or manually turned in — requiring back-office teams to manually rekey information into an ERP. With GoFormz, these timecards can be completed in the field leveraging Automatic Calculations to rapidly and accurately sum hours worked, then instantly routed to a supervisor and Van for approval. Once timecards have been completed for a pay period, a report can then be run, exported into Excel, and sent to Robert Henry’s ERP system of choice.
Van and the Robert Henry team also digitized their Daily Job Briefings, a report to be completed before and after each day’s work. Before GoFormz, Daily Job Briefings were not consistently completed, due to the manual, time consuming nature of paper forms. Now, the two page digital briefing includes a number of descriptive fields, including a job’s number, current weather conditions, locator ticket, job hazards, and crew members involved — and it is being regularly completed by team members
Additionally, the Daily Job Briefing includes an Image field, allowing for job site images to be effortlessly entered into the form. If an issue were to arise during or after a project, the Daily Job Briefing would serve as a critical point of reference for each day’s onsite activities. Leveraging GoFormz’s Cloud storage, form search capabilities, and real-time access to submitted data, Daily Job Briefings can be quickly located and accessed whenever they are needed.
Van and the Robert Henry team have also used GoFormz to dramatically simplify their billing processes. Using a digital ‘Cost Plus Sheet’ to document time spent and materials used throughout a project, Robert Henry personnel can now very quickly input the crew members involved, equipment used, and hours charged, along with a description of work. At the end of the month, a report is run on the data entered into the Cost Plus Sheet, which determines total billing hours. Using a digital ‘Unit Billing Sheet’, project activities are then broken down into a matrix of ‘Units’ (these are the activities completed, e.g. number of feet bored) along with dates and prices for each Unit. The prices are then summed to the right of the matrix, presenting form users with a final billing amount and day by day description of work completed.
Before an underground project can begin, a ‘locator’ is sent to the job site to identify areas containing obstacles, like gas lines. The locator then submits a ticket identifying these obstacles, which is then referenced within the Daily Job Briefing. If a gas line or other underground obstacle is ‘hit’ or damaged, onsite teams then complete a ‘Hit Report’ detailing the circumstances, including a summary of the work being performed, description of what was ‘hit’, whether or not surrounding areas lost corresponding services (e.g. gas), if the fire department was called, and more. Using paper forms, this process was intensive and time consuming. “Hit reports were brutally hard before GoFormz, because it was hard to get pictures with them,” Van explained. Now, with GoFormz, onsite teams can easily add incident images to their reports, and the back-office can access completed form as soon as they are submitted. “They’re all kept right in GoFormz, so if there is ever any legal activity related to that we have all the documentation right here in the hit report.”
For Van and the Robert Henry team, GoFormz and digital data capture is “ priceless”. Using mobile versions of their formerly paper-based forms has not only increased the thoroughness and accuracy of form data, but also simplified safety processes and made information more accessible. By simply eliminating the need to rekey information, Robert Henry has saved incredible amounts of time. “Rekeying versus uploading information saves us at least ten hours a week,” Van approximated of Robert Henry’s time savings. “We’re saving 30-40 hours a week, at fifty bucks an hour.”