Using written work orders was becoming a major stress for RSG Landscaping and Lawn Care, Inc. Not only was paper winding up misplaced or lost, but it was also becoming challenging to update crews in real time when something changed on the job, explains Steven May, human resources and purchasing manager for the Concord, Virginia-based company. May says they were in need of a solution to improve efficiencies. The answer came in adopting landscape business software.
Since implementing Asset, a product from Include Software, May says the company has been able to operate much more efficiently and to improve scheduling, among other benefits. It’s been Asset’s scheduling app, iCREWtek, that has been most helpful in replacing all the paperwork that once bogged the company down when it came to work orders.
“Prior to adopting Asset, we were using verbal or written work orders,” May says. “But when using a big stack of work orders to run your day, the constant changes to the schedule were difficult to accommodate. Something might come up and you can’t find the paper necessary to do the work.”
May says that’s all changed since adopting a landscape software program to help manage operations.
“Since integrating Asset, specifically iCREWtek, we’ve been able to automatically dispatch changes to the work order,” he says. “Now the work order shows up on the phone instantaneously and crews can stay on top of changes as they come up.”
May says that using software has also helped take any of the guesswork out of equation. Whereas relaying messages verbally could be misunderstood and paperwork could get misplaced, coffee stained, or even lost, using the software to send out work orders has been very clear and easy for crews to understand.
“It spells things out for them,” May says. “They know exactly what they’re doing.”
Given the fact that the company has multiple branches, May says this has simplified the process. There used to be a lot of paperwork coming through the main office. That information then needed to be dispatched to various branches and to crews in the field. It could get confusing. But having it all done electronically has really streamlined the entire process. May says it also allows the company to look at the “big picture” and to see what’s going on at any given time and across all branches.
“If I were to sum it up, I would say it’s made life easier,” May says. “We have a truer picture of our projects, which was something we didn’t have with paper work orders.”
Our Like a Boss series highlights some common business challenges landscape professionals face and how they conquer them.