Transforming a Construction Company’s Scheduling Process
Case Study: Custom Scheduling Application
A construction company that installs and services a wide range of construction specialty products noticed inefficiencies in the way resources were being scheduled for jobs. The company was using a manual scheduling process to allocate resources assigned to jobs on any given day. Therefore, forecasting and scheduling resources were challenging. Additionally, the company was experiencing issues with the overall calendar organization and job visibility. Requesting and scheduling jobs also involved a lot of paperwork. In order to improve organizational efficiency and communication, the company was looking to move away from their manual process. Thus, they were considering a custom scheduling application. The construction company had already established a partnership with Aciron Consulting on a prior custom application project. So, they reached out to Aciron again for the development of the custom scheduling application.
How We Added Value:
Aciron began the project by meeting with client stakeholders, including both project managers and schedulers. After the meeting, the client determined current pain points in their scheduling process. Schedulers were using a whiteboard with magnets to organize the company’s jobs.
Aciron performed a current state assessment to understand the client’s existing process. Through conversations with all of the stakeholders, the Aciron team was able to get a detailed understanding of the needs and priorities of each role. Additionally, the Aciron team and the client discussed how those needs would translate into requirements for the project. Aciron provided thoughtful feedback about the current scheduling process and gave actionable recommendations. These recommendations provided insights automating the process using a custom scheduling application.
Aciron prepared storyboards and process flow diagrams to demonstrate the flow and the visual appearance of the application. The Aciron team maintained open lines of communication, providing regular status updates. Then, Aciron incorporated client feedback into the project. Development and testing of the custom scheduling application proceeded, implementing the agreed-upon functionality and design. A group of the client’s schedulers and project managers then participated in user acceptance testing (“UAT”). This testing allowed the client to provide feedback on the system. Thus, allowing Aciron to make final adjustments that optimized the user experience.
Aciron developed a database-driven, web-based application that streamlines the client’s scheduling process. The scheduling application facilitates communication between the project managers and the field service managers. The entire scheduling process is now completely automated and contained within the system. As a result, the client has experienced a drastic reduction in paperwork.
The application’s user interface features drag-and-drop functionality, which makes scheduling jobs easy and intuitive. The scheduling application is also integrated with the previous custom application that Aciron had built for the client, allowing a seamless experience for users. In addition, the application has given the client more insight into the scheduling process. For example, each user has a personalized dashboard with an up-to-date job calendar. This calendar provides a snapshot of all scheduled jobs, as well as any unscheduled requests. Administrators can also run reports to track inefficiencies, such as cancellations and last-minute requests from project managers.
Since implementing this new, streamlined scheduling process, the client has been able to schedule jobs more efficiently. The custom application has eliminated much of the friction that resulted from using the manual process. As a result, the company has improved productivity.