Midwest Concrete Materials Streamlines Its Aggregates Operations with Spectrum®
Mike Sanson, the IT and HR manager at Midwest Concrete Materials, was a driving force behind his company’s switch to Spectrum® Construction Software. When he joined the Manhattan, Kan.-based company, it was running its operations through another solution where the level security and audit trails were virtually nonexistent. On almost a daily basis, the company was having to go in and make billing adjustments, correct mistakes or re-enter information that wasn’t entered correctly the first time through manual processes.
“At that time, if you didn’t have that paper ticket, it didn’t get entered. So who knows how much we actually might have missed,” Sanson said. “In the ready mix industry, a 10 yard load of concrete is about the most you can have on a ticket. So if we did a 100-yard order, which is asically a basement, then we’d have 10 tickets. They were manually entered into the system. Every time you touch a ticket, there was a chance for error. Without the audit trail, we were really vulnerable. I almost immediately started working on researching and seeing what else was out there that could fill our needs a lot better.”
That search led to Spectrum, which integrated with its ticketing systems and other solutions to create a streamlined flow of data into and out of its accounting and billing departments. “Now when we go through and batch all of our concrete, we simply edit all of the tickets and make sure they are correct, any additional charges are added to it and then it is a simple download into Spectrum and we’re ready to bill the customer,” Sanson said.
We went with Spectrum’s Document Imaging and now it’s so streamlined that today if a customer calls in and has a question about an order, we can immediately go in and pull up the invoice and the tickets associated with it.— Mike Sanson, IT and HR manager
More recently, Midwest Concrete Materials added automated scales at all of its sand plants. “So when one of our guys or a customer comes in, they swipe a card, the order is in there, it kicks out a ticket and it is good to go. Now, not just with our concrete, but with our aggregate materials, we are downloading the majority of our tickets there,” Sanson said.
Sanson said what his company is doing today with Spectrum and a two-person accounts receivable team would have required as many as eight data entry people before, adding that the time and labor saved with Spectrum has been instrumental to helping the company realize tremendous growth.
“There are days where we are, in ready mix alone, having to process 200 to 250 tickets. Again, you can only batch so much per ticket. The same way with a dump truck. If you can only haul 14 tons and you have 30 trucks running, they’re going to make several deliveries in a day, that’s a lot of tickets. So there is high volume on out ticketing and billing,” Sanson said. “Without Spectrum, and the powerful functionality it brings to the table, effectively managing these operations would be next to impossible.”
Additionally, Midwest Concrete Materials recently added Spectrum’s Document Imaging, which has helped to further streamline processes.
“With the amount of paper we were accumulating and sorting though, it started to get out of hand and we needed to go electronic,” Sanson said. “So we went with Spectrum’s Document Imaging and now it’s so streamlined that today if a customer calls in and has a question about an order, we can immediately go in and pull up the invoice and the tickets associated with it and not be sorting through boxes and boxes of tickets trying to find the right one so we can make a copy of it for them.” It’s saving time, it’s saving us storage and it’s saving us money on tickets as well because we no longer have to print as many tickets as what we used to. With Document Imaging, we don’t have to store paper tickets in multiple places. Everything is inside Spectrum. It has really allowed us to move forward and address a lot of issues and get control of our whole operation.”