Smart Solutions

Silicon Valley’s Western Allied Streamlines Field Work, Office Processes with Viewpoint Technology

With Viewpoint’s Field View technology, Western Mechanical’s workers in the field can quickly complete and send punch lists to project manager and office support personnel. “This product has and will speed up the zero punch process that we employ,” said Operations Manager Jim Jeffrey.

Based in the San Francisco Bay Area, design-build contractor Western Allied Mechanical, Inc. has been using Viewpoint software for over a decade. As a result, it has streamlined project management and processes—for example, cutting RFI response time from days to minutes.

Western Allied adopted Spectrum, a completely integrated construction enterprise resource planning (ERP) software, in 2005. The move helped Western Allied significantly modernize its operations, drastically reducing its reliance on paper and manual processes—like spreadsheets and duplicative data entry into disparate construction management solutions—to facilitate workflows, accounting, and financial reporting. Several years later, when Spectrum became the first construction ERP to move to the cloud, Western Allied took advantage of the easy, browser-based access to construction data and collaboration tools in real time to further improve productivity.

Opening the Box

Operations Manager Jim Jeffrey said Western Allied really committed to “opening the box”—that is, taking full advantage of Spectrum’s features. The company deployed Spectrum’s document imaging functionality throughout the company, implemented deep reporting and business intelligence tools, and tracked productivity in its sheet metal and piping shop. As a result, it has streamlined project management and job compliance tasks.

“Using Spectrum’s job compliance features really helped in keeping us on track, knowing when all of our compliance documents are completed,” said Project Administrator Donna Nielson. “It makes it very easy to see, with Spectrum’s dashboard, when you’re out of compliance. You can just click on that dashboard item and drill down.”

Western Allied has taken part in several product and new functionality beta tests with Spectrum and Viewpoint. This year, it is beta testing both Viewpoint Team™ and Viewpoint Field View™ products.

“We’re finding Team to be a very powerful program. It allows for the compilation and organization of submittals and RFIs and other project documents. It has shortened our RFI response time from days to literally minutes,” Jeffrey said.

“Field View, meanwhile, allows the field to provide on-the-fly issues logs and punch list documents to be sent to project manager and office support personnel,” Jeffrey continued. “This has been both a refinement and a boon to our field QA/QC issues. This product has and will speed up the zero punch process that we employ.” Western Allied has also embraced Viewpoint’s Service Tech solution, increasing efficiency among technicians in the field and for back-office processes. The company can now keep a digital history and enhance scheduling of its entire service department—that is, everything from electronic dispatch to time keeping and site history to work orders and purchase orders.

“When I saw Service Tech, I was really excited because it looked to be just what we needed,” said CFO Jeff Pierce. “We wanted a solution where we could push out work orders, service calls, and preventative maintenance tasks and be able to get the time back in and facilitate the billing process quicker. For a CFO, that’s always important.”

Keeping pace with the changing technology and landscape of the field is important to Western Allied. “We have clients that are very dynamic companies, and their needs can change even between the time you’ve started a project and when you’ve delivered it,” said Jeffrey.

Western Allied was awarded Viewpoint’s 2017 Innovator of the Year for Spectrum. Watch the company’s full story here.

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