Finding Savings with Tool Accountability
"Simplicity is the end result of long, hard work, not the starting point."
Have you noticed that sometimes the promise of technology causes more problems than it solves. Think about it. How often has technology promised to make our lives easier and yet in the end has made it more complex? Sometimes we seek technology to solve a particular problem. But often, the complicated effort it takes to run the technology generates multiple new problems worse than what we had hoped to change in the first place.
In construction, this is particularly true. Contractors are hit from all sides with software and hardware ads that promise to “change the way you do business.” But without ease-of-use and companywide adoption, sometimes these purchases become just a big expense. Construction firms large and small have definitely seen their share of “innovation” that in reality, made life harder. Often, a simple solution is indeed the best solution. A great example is tool tracking.
Keeping track of tools and equipment that are making the rounds in a modern construction company is trickier than it seems. ShareMyToolbox has approached tool tracking with this in mind. Rather than “revolutionizing the industry,” the company developed a simple app that solves a complex problem - the problem of tool loss.
For many contractors, a better solution is to assign accountability to a person who “signs out” a particular tool. By shifting the responsibility to the person last assigned the tools, ‘a peer-to-peer sharing of information’ is created, enabling good people to solve the problem.
Blinderman Construction – A Case Study
Jack Hobbs is a Senior Superintendent at Chicago’s Blinderman Construction. Awhile back, Hobbs decided that leading tool tracking app, ShareMyToolbox was the most practical choice for his company. We wanted to learn why so we took some time to ask him a few questions. Hobbs gave us the scoop on how the solution has changed the way Blinderman Construction assigns, tracks and manages tools.
Operating with roughly 60 employees at any given time, assigning and managing tools across different projects was a cumbersome and time-consuming task for Blinderman. It was also occasionally an expensive one, particularly in a competitive marketplace where every dollar counts.
As Senior Superintendent, Self-Perform Manager, Hobbs already knew the importance of technology for managing a construction business. Blinderman is currently using proven solutions like Get Zoom, Procore and Oracle Primavera P6 to keep things humming. With a yard manager handling tool management on Blinderman projects, it was becoming more evident that technology would be important for managing their tools as well. This was especially true because tool hoarding and lost or stolen tools were becoming more and more common. Plus, the overhead of paying a yard manager was becoming a costly expense. Since Blinderman has a tool allowance that they add to every bid on a percentage basis (rather than a job specific task), keeping costs down as it relates to tools is an important line item for profitable projects.
When considering the right solution for Blinderman, Hobbs explained, “We looked at several options on the market, but ShareMyToolbox was clearly the most advanced in the type of technology we were looking for to track our assets. Because of the simplicity, it fits our business model the best.”
“We looked at several options on the market, but ShareMyToolbox was clearly the most advanced in the type of tool we were looking for to track our assets.”
- Jack Hobbs
There has clearly been a big improvement in accountability for Blinderman since implementing ShareMyToolbox. When asked what features about ShareMyToolbox most appealed him, he declared, “The most important feature is that we can not only assign it (the tool) per location, but to the individual as well.”
Placing the accountability for tool management on the individual make it easier to transfer tools and avoid the blame game when trying to locate them. When asked if this was true for his business, Hobbs quickly responded, “Yes, absolutely!”
The Bottom Line
Contractors have found savings in different ways with ShareMyToolbox - from time savings to cost savings. Hobbs explained how Blinderman has found savings benefits particularly from a headcount perspective. “ShareMyToolbox helped us save money by not having the headcount we had to worry about with individuals who took care of the tool inventory in the past. We don’t have to pay those salaries and benefits any more which really helps.”
From his research looking at different tool tracking solutions, Hobbs feels that ShareMyToolbox could be beneficial to any contractor looking for a simple solution to tool management. He concluded, “I’ve worked with many different competitors of ShareMyToolbox – and there’s not really an apples to apples comparison to the way ShareMyToolbox works right now.” He concluded, “Comparing it to the other tool tracking systems that are out there however, for our business model, there’s none other that works as well as this solution.”
Want to learn if ShareMyToolbox is right for your business? Check out ShareMyToolbox, at https://www.sharemytoolbox.com/tool-tracking or call, 866.768.8665
Back to Tool Tracking Tips Screen.