For nearly three decades, ARCO Design/Build (ARCO), a company of ARCO Construction, has been respected as a leader with insight and experience in distribution center construction. The firm specializes in turnkey solutions to fit the needs of each and every client, handling everything from design services to general contracting. Their tailored method distills the complexities of the process while achieving cost and time savings without compromising their top-quality commitment.
ARCO’s turnkey approach allows customers to have a direct relationship with one company versus multiple organizations, streamlining the overall process, expediting schedules, and reducing client risk. This continuous pursuit of better, more efficient construction prompted ARCO’s search for technology to improve overall timekeeping and production tracking.
“We have a priority on driving our technology to mobile-first solutions. In addition, we strive to reduce the number of applications in our environment, create consistency in methods and organization, and streamline how data flows through integrated systems.” DREW TRAMMEL, Technology Manager, ARCO Design/Build
ARCO’s self-perform concrete division performs concrete jobs for the design/ build projects the company is awarded. That can include larger warehouses that range from $200K to $5M, and an active team of one foreman managing 1-2 jobs at a time with 25-75 craftsmen working those jobs.
With that scale of project and people involved, tracking time was no easy task for this division. Drew explains: “We were using an Excel spreadsheet our accounting team provided. This had some macros and programming code to help automate repetitive tasks, yet we faced ongoing issues when the spreadsheet would break, with version control, with wrong costs being entered, and so on. We lacked true integration between the spreadsheet and the accounting system, which left us juggling a very manual process including emails, texts, and phone calls to capture information from our team in the field and on-site. It became incredibly aggravating for everyone.”
The outdated process caused additional problems including delays in payment and lacking correct cost codes for accurate payments.
“We really needed to ease the frustration of timekeeping among our field crews who had the burden of getting out their laptops, opening up a spreadsheet from SharePoint, entering their time, and making sure that information was saved because we often had sync issues. Plus, if the macros would break, then they’d have to get someone to help them fix that problem before they could enter their time. This process became a real distraction from performing the work we have them out there to do.” DREW TRAMMEL, Technology Manager, ARCO Design/Build
“During the evaluation stage, ARCO compared a few options. Mobile-first was a top requirement because they needed to enable the field to use the application easily and quickly wherever they go. According to Drew: “Lots of products out there can track time, but when you get into the nuances of how that time is being tracked, the different pay types, and what happens in the payroll process, we realized that the other products on the market are simply not as flexible as Rhumbix.” ARCO considered CrewTracks and Procore but found them insufficient in key areas, as Drew describes: “Those systems can’t lock down pay periods and lack governance around what type of time can get tracked, in what pay periods, and who can enter that time. They also don’t have the workflow tied in for streamlined approvals.” DREW TRAMMELL Technology Manager, ARCO Design/Build
When evaluating better technology to improve their timekeeping, ARCO’s key goal was to make it easier and simple for foremen and crews in the field to capture time, update as needed, and submit timecards to payroll in an efficient manner.
“Our key requirements during evaluation was that the application have a mobile-first, intuitive design, and have the capability to track non-hourly pay types. We also wanted offline capabilities, and easy integration with our HR and payroll systems,” Drew says. “Rhumbix hit all our requirements and more.”
ARCO chose Rhumbix solutions for timekeeping and production tracking. This allows the company to quickly capture timecards and process payroll accurately, as well as optimize labor productivity and improve project outcomes.
Better control allows better project outcomes for ARCO. Drew elaborates: “Now using Rhumbix, there’s a nice workflow in place with checks and balances before information gets put into the payroll system. Plus, Rhumbix simplified processes for the folks in the field because they don’t have to figure out which cost codes to use as that detail is already in the app. In fact, the Rhumbix app is so intuitive that our field crews were quick to pick it up, learn it, and use it – and that’s been a key part of our overall success with this implementation.”
Beyond workflow improvements with field timekeeping, ARCO has also achieved integration with their payroll and HR systems and has production tracking working in conjunction with the mobile application.
Even early in implementation, when headaches and aggravations can be common due to making a change to processes, ARCO recognized how eager people were to adapt to using Rhumbix. Everyone appreciates that they’ve been able to cut down on the time-consuming back and forth exchanges between accounting and concrete teams, and now have a much easier experience getting correct information into their process and getting people paid on time.
“Rhumbix has been a huge help in reducing the time and potential error in our processes, which was significant in our previous shared spreadsheet method that involved so many hands in the pot,” explains Drew. “It’s great to have this integrated solution in place. Everyone clearly understands their part in the workflow, and I’ve not heard any complaints. One of the best things I have heard is how much easier it is for our field teams. Now using a mobile app, they can quickly whip out their device, and capture and submit their time without a lot of effort or thought required – or chance of error!”
A true testament to the success of this division’s implementation of Rhumbix is evident in the interest and subsequent implementation by a second ARCO self-perform concrete division! Impressed by the integration facilitated and the application’s ease of use, corporate leadership made the switch to Rhumbix again and expects additional self-perform divisions to evaluate the application, too. Drew adds, “Our company approaches technology decisions in a methodical way, and we choose solutions that are scalable and would work for other divisions that may need something similar. Rhumbix really fits our needs!”
“It proved incredibly valuable to perform exhaustive due diligence during our evaluation stage. We involved not only three foremen/project managers and field crew members from the concrete team, but also our HR Systems Director, our accounting group handling payroll for the concrete division, and a colleague from the applications team to assist on integration with other systems, like Viewpoint and MultiPro, that we use. All of us gave input on the scope of work to include everything we believed we needed to find the best fit solution for us. We captured those essentials while vetting vendors to emphasize that our needs were not just for timekeeping, but that we want technology on the backend to make lives easier, to seamlessly integrate with our payroll system, and handle the pay types we require. So, my advice to other contractors is to understand your full scope of needs and involve various departments that will be touched by making the change.” DREW TRAMMELL Technology Manager, ARCO Design/Build
Founded in 1995, ARCO Design/Build is a national design-build contractor with locations in Atlanta, Charlotte, Houston, Indianapolis, Jacksonville, Memphis, Raleigh-Durham, and Salt Lake City. The firm specializes in cold storage warehouses, light industrial distribution, and manufacturing, and has completed more than one hundred million square feet of space across the country. In fact, ARCO is the #1 largest domestic builder of distribution and warehouse facilities, crediting that success to expertise as a single-source solution to best serve clients, which serves their philosophy that “we win when our clients win.”