Ranked as one of the top commercial general contractors in the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area, TRINITY Group Construction, Inc. is a $20 million company with 20 employees specializing in a wide range of construction services.
Timberline is clunky and it’s hard to extract data. Having the SQL database in ProContractor ™ by Viewpoint, we can easily create reports and push them out to the field. This was not even possible in our previous system.— Mil L. Wallen, III, CEO
Founded by Mil L. Wallen, III, in 2002, TRINITY quickly outgrew its QuickBooks accounting solution and turned to Sage Timberline to manage the financial side of the business. Wallen had used the solution at a previous company and was familiar with it; however, once he deployed it at his own company, he found it was extremely challenging for his employees to use. “We also did not see any progression in the product development side and knew we needed a more user- friendly, intuitive solution to help us manage our business,” Wallen explained.
Wallen conducted a significant amount of research to find a new solution, but it was a glowing recommendation from another construction company that led him towards ProContractor™ by Viewpoint. “When I found out that ProContractor could be used for project management, accounting, and estimating, that was a huge selling point,” said Wallen.
ProContractor is an all-in-one construction management solution that helps contractors better manage their entire project lifecycle, from the initial bid to the final punch list, in a single system.
As of late 2013, TRINITY is still early in its implementation as new processes are being put in place to streamline operations, following the appointment of Steve Galles as the company’s new CFO. However, the benefits of leveraging the all-in-one solution are quickly being realized.
Quick & Easy Reporting
Galles explained the challenges of extracting information from the other solutions on the market and that a real benefit of ProContractor is the underlying database. “Timberline is clunky and it’s hard to extract data. Having the SQL database in ProContractor, we can easily create reports and push them out to the field. This was not even possible in our previous system.”
As CEO of the firm, Wallen believes the powerful reporting capabilities in ProContractor will be a huge time-saver. He explained that “it was murder” to create a report in Timberline and it would take over an hour to print some reports from that system. Now, any report they need can be quickly generated and printed in less than one minute from ProContractor.
The reports in ProContractor provide easy-to-read charts and graphs to give contractors real-time information in dozens of standard formats. Both Wallen and Galles emphasized the benefits of being able to easily drill-down on information for more specific details, whereas Timberline required them to leave their screen and go to other locations to find more details, which added to the already frustrating and time-consuming process.
Anytime, Anywhere Access
It was the ProContractor Mobile Connect application that grabbed Wallen’s attention. Mobile Connect provides easy and convenient access to important project-related data on an iPad mobile device. It offers the ability for project managers, owners, and others to have timely access to important project information at all times, whether they are in the office or in the field.
With TRINITY’s previous methods, daily field reports were done in Excel and then emailed to the office. Now, they are simply entered from an iPad right into ProContractor. “It is much quicker, freeing up time, and making it a lot easier to find information,” said Wallen.
Documentation at-hand and easy reference to an accurate trail of communications helps the contractor keeps projects and profits on track. “With ProContractor, our superintendents can easily enter timecards and process other documents from the field. They can also have up- to-the minute information at any time when on a jobsite or during progress meetings at the site,” said Wallen. “The information is always right there with Mobile Connect. If I’m meeting with a client and they owe us money, for example, I can have all the information I need at my fingertips and pull up the details right then and there.”
All the Details — All in One Place
TRINITY chose ProContractor for a variety of reasons, including its ease-of-use, intuitive nature, all-in-one model, robust reporting capabilities, graphical interface, and the ability to easily drill-down to access details. “It is just more fluid, easier, and intuitive than the Timberline system,” said Wallen.
Galles expects the system will provide significant time and cost-savings once fully implemented. “Eliminating the double data entry between project management and accounting will help to improve efficiency and lead to increased accuracy,” said Galles. “ProContractor will also help our project managers be better able to receive and track information on projects, budgets, and schedules in the field. And, with streamlined processes, our data will be synchronized, with one system to produce monthly statements, such as WIP reports, which enables us to better understand our profitability on each job.”