Prime Build is an early adopter in the construction industry—a rapidly growing general contractor that leverages technology to handle dozens of projects spread out over a large geographical area. But in early 2019, the contracting firm based in New South Wales, Australia, still hadn’t solved the challenge of workforce management.
“Resource management and forecasting has always been a huge challenge,” Director Tim Thompson says. “If you have ten people trying to hop into an Excel spreadsheet, it’s a recipe for disaster.”
A weekly update meeting would grind to a halt while everyone waited for the bloated Excel file with more than 1,000 lines to open. It was difficult to compare and understand what was happening across jobs in different states.
Prime Build was searching for a platform that could provide real-time information on scheduling and resources at both the regional and national level. LaborChart was the right technology solution.
Prime Build chose LaborChart because it offered the ability to customize workforce management and realize savings with accurate, up-to-date information on a cloud-based platform.
Prime Build and LaborChart spent several weeks designing a custom platform that met the needs of each division. Managers were able to see and allocate available resources, while directors at the national level could shift resources between divisions.
“With LaborChart we could really set up the platform to handle the projects we do,” Thompson says.
The Excel file that threatened to crash the weekly meeting was replaced with a digital interface—a cloud-based platform that let everyone move at their own pace and drill down into projects in real-time. Thompson estimates this one change saves Prime Build at least three to fours every week.
With LaborChart, Prime Build can quickly and efficiently look at the current project mix in order to plan for new work and onboard new employees.
Prime Build receives a host of tenders and now, through LaborChart, has the ability to look at a single page that tells whether or not a team is available to allocate to a new project.
“LaborChart gives us a view into when we should chase work and when we’re at capacity,” Thompson says.
With a clearer approach to forecasting potential resources required on current and future projects, Prime Build is now able to forecast total resources by role several months in advance. Prime Build launched a new line of business, shopfitting more than 200 stores across Australia, that leveraged the improved communication and analysis provided by their custom platform.
A stronger grasp about where and how people were being utilized enables Prime Build to focus on the onboarding process. The contracting firm can be thoughtful about when it is hiring and how new hires are trained. LaborChart helped Prime Build navigate the economic challenges presented by the Coronavirus pandemic. Management shifted crews to regions where work was available in order to keep workers employed and position the company for future growth.