Category: <span>RT3 Membership</span>

RT3 Members Explore the Innovative World of 3M

By Karen L. Edwards, RT3.

Words aren’t going to do this event justice. There were so many incredible things we learned about 3M while touring their World of Innovation Center and hearing presentations from Maureen Kavanagh, Laboratory Manager and Josh Orman, Strategy and Marketing Manager, both from the Industrial and Mineral Products Division.

From a roofing industry perspective, most of the RT3 members knew that 3M makes the granules that are used in asphalt roofing products. We were also aware that 3M had created some pretty cool granule technologies including algae-resistant and smog-reducing granules (recognized by Time Magazine in 2018 as a Best Invention). What we didn’t realize was how 3M innovations are everywhere. There is a saying that wherever you are, there is probably a 3M product within 10 feet of you.

The World of Innovation was where RT3 members learned about the many innovations and provided a hands-on experience to see many of the technologies and experience how the products worked. We learned a little bit about William L. McKnight, 3M president from 1929 – 1949 and Chairman of the Board from 1949-1966. He was known for the saying “hire good people and leave them alone.” McKnight created a culture of inclusiveness, diversity and innovation.

To this day, 3M employees are encouraged to spend 15 percent of their working hours developing new ideas and solutions. Our host, Maureen, explained in her overview of the company that 3M sees itself as a company that develops solutions to its customers problems. That got the attention of RT3 Members as they headed into breakout sessions to discuss some of the roofing industry issues that 3M might be able to help us solve. There were some creative ideas that came from the session that if possible, could really impact our industry.

The ideas included:

  • Robotic tearoffs
  • 3D manufacturing
  • Tarps that are like Post-it® notes

    Creating safer safety harnesses that predict energy absorption
  • Fastening applications using their adhesives
  • Safety strips for steep-slope roofs
  • Scaffolding in truck to eliminate ladders
  • Sensors in the roof system to eliminate need for core samples
  • Carfax for roof history to see past damage
  • Emergency temporary spray for repairs
  • Insulation that bleeds through membrane if there is a leak for easy identification
  • Pressure seals between layers of insulation to detect leaks
  • Storm kits
  • Full head gear systems for silica safety, fan-force air out and create cool air inside
  • Clothing that prevents heat exhaustion
  • Smog reduction into more materials than granules, i.e. tile
  • Carbon capture technology
  • Printed single ply to resemble shingles, shakes, etc. to increase SRI
  • Retractable lifelines that elevate above the roof
  • Leak detectors under the roof to alert before significant damage occurs
  • Solar integrated roofing systems
  • Ergonomic tape for tools
  • Non-stick, gripping material for work boot soles and roofing materials
  • Granules in spray format to extend roof life and reduce smog for existing roofs
  • Water recapture systems with sanitization
  • Film for over skylights that can support body weight
  • Safety gear that alerts employers if it is removed

After RT3 members shared their ideas for the 15-percent time, the group discussed ideas for future meetup locations and other initiatives, such as the development of a technology-focused podcast. The day concluded with a visit to the 3M Roofing Innovation Center with a tour of how color blends are created and how samples are run to visualize what the new blend would look like on a roof.

It is our hope that by learning about innovations in other industries, it might be possible to adapt those solutions for use in the roofing industry. By meeting with innovators and problem solvers like 3M, we provide insight into the challenges being faced in the roofing industry with the goal of developing new technology solutions that can change the industry and improve health, safety and material performance.

Stay up to date on the latest roofing technology news and happenings when you sign up for the RT3 SmartBrief e-newsletter.

Want to see more technology in the roofing industry? Get involved with RT3.

By Karen L. Edwards.

Don’t just become a member, become an engaged member if you want to help advance technology in the industry.

As we enter the second year of the existence of the Roofing Technology Think Tank (RT3) we’re excited to see the interest and the growth continue to surge forward. RT3 members are committed and dedicated to advancing the adoption of technology into the roofing industry. We continue to add new members who are passionate about the future of the industry, so we thought it might be a good time to revisit what our group is about and how you can maximize your involvement to make a difference.

Not like other industry associations.

RT3 is not the typical industry association that you might be used to. We call ourselves a think tank for a reason. We are constantly looking for the latest technologies and innovations to understand how they can be applied to or adapted for the roofing industry. Our members are individuals and companies who are passionate about technology and how it can help those working in roofing be more efficient, keep their workers safer and make the industry a more appealing career path for our future workforce. We do this through a series of live and virtual meetups throughout the year.

Live meetups are held at unique, tech-friendly locations that are not necessarily affiliated with roofing. For instance, our team held a live meetup on the Microsoft campus where we heard from leaders there along with a tour of their innovation lab. We saw many concepts in development that we were able to see how they could be incorporated into the roofing industry. After seeing and learning, we disseminate information back into the industry to help educate everyone on what amazing things are happening that can help our industry as a whole.

We’re planning ahead through 2019 and into 2020 to host future meetups at some pretty incredible places – you won’t want to miss out.

We give back through education.

In 2019, RT3 formed a panel of five roofing contractors who are having success and helping their businesses through the use of technology. This panel presented at the International Roofing Expo in Nashville and will also be sharing their experiences at the upcoming AECTech conference in Illinois and the Western Roofing Expo in June. None of the contractors are compensated for their time or travel expenses but they do it because they feel so strongly about giving back to help other contractors find the same successes that they have.

In addition, RT3 partners with Smart Brief to produce this twice weekly newsletter that helps you stay informed about the top news and trends in the roofing industry.

Any member can participate in RT3 task teams.

As part of our continued effort to study, learn and give back through sharing of educational content and resources, we’ve developed Task Teams that work on initiatives related to: future workforce development, communications inside and outside of the industry, RT3 member recruitments, meetups and tactical. The best way to get energized and feel like you are making a difference is to be a part of one of these task teams.

Be a thought leader.

RT3 has a blog that posts thought leadership content from our members about eight to 10 times each month. We are always looking to share the knowledge that many of our members have. Think you don’t have anything to contribute? We bet you’re wrong and would love to have a 10 minute conversation with you about our organization and what a difference it can make, not only for your business, but for the industry as well.

Inquire about becoming a member!

Roofing Technology Think Tank (RT3) Exploring the Future of Roofing

The question that keeps presenting itself in every corner of the roofing industry is how are we going to hire and retain the labor we need to keep our industry strong? It is a question that is explored in every roofing association, roofing company, manufacturer and distributor. How are we going to attract talent?

A group of industry thought-leaders came together in the spring of 2017 to try and find solutions for this critical issue with a focus on how technology could make the difference. The Roofing Technology Think Tank (RT3) was started to focus on research and dissemination of technology information that could make a difference not only with attracting and retaining talent but also improving the professional reputation of the roofing industry.

“RT3 is a consortium of thought leaders exploring emerging technology solutions for the roofing industry,” says Heidi J. Ellsworth, one of the founders and current directors of RT3 and a partner with “As a group we believe we can develop the atmosphere to inspire learning and networking that will bring important technology into our industry. We are striving to provide critical information about innovative technology and solutions for roofing contractors by bringing together progressive and disruptive expert solutions that can help build the professionalism and appeal of the roofing industry.”

RT3 is committed to finding innovative technology solutions to be used within the roofing industry by enabling ongoing thought leadership and insights from progressive leaders both inside and outside the roofing industry, along with identifying practical resources for implementing potential solutions successfully. The organization is encouraging and enabling roofing contractors to embrace technology as they seek to grow their businesses. With a commitment to disseminating technology advancement information, RT3 believes that technology is one of the top solutions for the labor crisis.

“The next generation is looking to use their technical skills in new ways and the roof is a prime area for innovation,” stated Tom Whitaker, CEO of Harness and a director on the RT3 Board. “Most of our U.S. workforce already use an iPhone and/or tablet daily for their personal life, why would they not want to use them in their work life? We have the opportunity for our labor force to utilize the power of mobile devices on the roof for documentation and education. We need to make it a part of all rooftop systems.”

“The move to robotics on the rooftop is happening,” said Steve Little, Head Coach at KPost Roofing & Waterproofing in Dallas, Texas and an RT3 Director. “At KPOST, we are already incorporating machines on the roof that are more robotic then ever before. Our work crews are learning how to maintain the machinery on the roof while giving even more attention to the details. It is part of the evolution of the roof and incredibly important.”

RT3 was formed to act as a conduit for curating knowledge on technologies that can help roofing contractors and the roofing industry overall. The group has grown from twenty founding members to over sixty. With a board of six directors, both directors and members work to successfully accomplish the objective of supporting the advancement of the adoption of technology within the roofing industry. According to its mission statement, “Roofing Technology Think Tank (RT3), is a consortium of thought leaders exploring emerging technology solutions for the roofing industry, striving to inform contractors by bringing together progressive and disruptive solutions that help build the professionalism and appeal of the roofing industry,”

The think tank meets six times a year, four virtually and two live. Past live meetings included tours of Georgia Tech, BuiltWorlds and the U.S. Capitol. Future meetings will continue to be held at innovative locations that will help enlighten the group on progressive technologies that can make a difference in the roofing industry. “The live meetings have been instrumental to our learning curve,” said Ken Kelly of Kelly Roofing, Naples Florida and an RT3 Director. “The opportunity to see what other trades and the construction industry as a whole are doing is key to us curating information and not wasting time recreating the wheel.”

“It is about education and the initiative to understand and then disseminate innovative technologies into the roofing industry,” continued Ellsworth. “The dissemination portion is just as important as learning about modern technologies. If we cannot adequately share the information, then we will miss a key part of our mission as a think tank.”

To that end, RT3 partnered early on with BuiltWorlds, SmartBrief and to share information from the think tank and its members. “We need to share the information that we are bringing in and our partnerships have been critical,” stated Trent Cotney, CEO of Cotney Construction Law and a RT3 Board Member. “As part of our incorporation, we looked to other groups who use technology effectively and have proven digital audiences that we could tap into. It has been very effective so far.”

As part of the RT3 mission, the next prime initiative is to launch an online solution directory on the RT3 website. “The solution directory is a place for all technology services or providers to share their technology,” continued Whitaker who developed the directory and website. “We want the industry to visit the site and provide reviews on the technologies. It is the only way we will truly get industry-specific feedback.”

Future meetings will continue to be held at innovative locations that will help enlighten the group on progressive technologies that can make a difference in the roofing industry. The goal is to learn, understand and then disseminate new technologies into the roofing industry. One of the ways to attract the new generation and a diversified labor force is to incorporate the use of technology including robotics, software, cloud solutions and cutting-edge technologies that we are not even aware of yet.

Josey Parks, RT3’s Workforce Development Task Team Chair, recently announced a new millennial toolkit. “We want to help contractors attract millennials, but it is about understanding what they are looking for in a career,” stated Josey Parks, CEO of Metal Roofs of Texas. “Technology is key, but it is also about culture. The two go together and what the next generation is looking for is commitment to its employees. This group of thought leaders that are a part of RT3 are bringing so much more than just information about technology, we are exploring how technology can create a culture of success for us as a trade.”

“The next generation of millennials will demand the use of technology, if we want to compete for talent as an industry, we will need to create an appealing workplace,” confirmed Karen Inman, COO of Antis Roofing out of Orange County, CA. “With a dwindling workforce, we need to be on the front end of recent technologies that will automate the rooftop. Labor is just one of the urgent business problems that can be addressed with these types of progressive ideas.”

“We are encouraging everyone to visit our website at www.rt3thinktank.test, sign up for the RT3 SmartBrief e-newsletter, follow the blogs, review the companies in the solution directory and if interested, apply to join,” confirmed Karen Edwards, communications and engagement leader for RT3 and owner of Casimir Group. “This is the type of organization that brings on change and we want to invite the industry to be involved.”

Photo by Eddie Kopp on Unsplash

3 Ways to Improve Communication on Your Jobsite with Drones

By Devon Tackles.

Keeping tabs on a construction project is no small task. Every job has many moving parts. From tracking progress to managing subcontractors, communicating across teams can be challenging — no matter the size of your organization. The good news is, by spending less than an hour each week mapping your jobsite with drones, you’ll gain an entire toolkit to help you and your team work more efficiently, make more informed decisions, and communicate with ease.

Drone maps and models not only provide an aerial view of your project, but each map includes a rich set of data that can be used to further measure and analyze just about anything on a site. Here are three ways you can improve communication on your jobsite with the use of drones and aerial maps.

  1. Project Monitoring and Site Inspection

DroneDeploy, an industry leader in drone mapping software, discovered that 60% of their customers make maps weekly. This regular, overhead view is invaluable when it comes to tracking progress and inspecting for safety issues on construction projects. “Drone maps give my team a bird’s eye view of the site, which looks a lot different than being on the ground,” explained Matthew Forster, Project Engineer for Choate Construction. “It gives them a full picture.”

Although nothing replaces boots on the ground, weekly drone maps can significantly reduce the amount of time you spend walking an entire site for the purposes of inspection and monitoring. For more advanced oversight, you can import and overlay site plans right in the DroneDeploy interface, or export your maps into industry software like BIM, GIS, and CAD. You can easily export your data in the format you need or use open APIs to sync your data with everyday tools.

Contract Project Manager Nick Johnson of Tilt Rock of Texas does this to help him manage large, custom home projects. Homeowners make frequent changes to house footprints, models, and orientation, so Johnson overlays drone maps with utility, wastewater, and communications plans to help him can catch conflicts with services before they actually happen and redirect them at minimal cost.

“Aerial imagery identifies conflicts I wouldn’t normally see from the ground level. Now, I find out about conflicts in a matter of days, instead of months.”- Nick Johnson, Project Manager, Tilt Rock of Texas

  1. Take Volume and Area Measurements, Estimate Stockpiles, and Monitor Earthwork

Every location on a drone map is geotagged, so you can take basic measurements almost instantly, from any device. For situations that require centimeter-level accuracy, ground control points (GCPs) can be added to a map. These marked targets help mapping software accurately position your map in relation to the real world and afford the accuracy needed to make precise volumetric and linear measurements.

“I can tell how many square feet of roof we’ve put down, how much square footage of concrete is left to pour,” Ryan Moret, Field Solutions Manager at McCarthy Building Companies, said. “If we’re trying to figure out truck access, we can measure the width of a road or gate or how much room we need to clear out for material to make the site clean and organized.”

  1. Share Insights, Align Teams, and Inform Stakeholders

Drones make collaboration and information sharing, both internally and externally, easier than ever before. Cloud-based platforms make it easy to share annotated maps between team members, or keep external stakeholders up-to-speed on the progress of a project.

In contractor meetings, having a clear display of any current site issues is a powerful communication tool. Likewise, having an up-to-date drone map helps distribute information efficiently, even among large teams. Streamline the decision-making process by referencing a drone map any time changes need to be made to a project.

McCarthy Building Companies uses drones in many high-tech ways, but at the end of the day, “paper is still the common denominator for jobsites,” says Moret. On every McCarthy site, the wall of the job trailer is covered with weekly drone maps posted in sequence, giving anyone who walks into the room a clear picture of the project’s progress over time, as well as a snapshot of any current issues on the site.

“The trades love it, being able to walk up to the wall and see nine weeks of construction photos,” Moret said. “They pull these up in every sub meeting, every owner meeting. We have data from that week to show contractors, ‘hey, the site’s a mess; you guys need to go clean it up.’ You can see rebar spread out all over the place, so there’s no arguing. They see it for what it’s worth.”

BuiltWorlds partnered with DroneDeploy to bring you this article. You can read the full version of this piece here.

Roofing Technology Think Tank Elects Board of Directors

The newly elected board of directors will serve terms that range from one to three years in length.

Roofing Technology Think Tank (RT3), a group of progressive roofing professionals focused on technology solutions for the roofing industry, announced that it has elected six directors of the board at its May 9 virtual meetup.


RT3 was formed to act as a conduit for curating knowledge on technologies that can help roofing contractors and the roofing industry overall.  Formed in July of 2017, the group has grown from twenty founding members to over sixty.  The think tank was officially incorporated in 2018 and now is proud to announce its new board of directors.


Heidi J. Ellsworth, Partner, and Karen Inman, Chief Operating Officer, Antis Roofing and Waterproofing, will serve three-year terms on the board. Steve Little, Head Coach at KPost Roofing & Waterproofing and Ken Kelly, President of Kelly Roofing will serve two-year terms while Trent Cotney, Cotney Construction Law and Tom Whitaker, President of Harness Software will serve one-year terms.


The board will support the RT3 mission statement and work to successfully accomplish its objectives to support and advance the adoption of technology within the roofing industry.  According to its mission statement, “Roofing Technology Think Tank (RT3), is a consortium of thought leaders exploring emerging technology solutions for the roofing industry, striving to inform contractors by bringing together progressive and disruptive solutions that help build the professionalism and appeal of the roofing industry,”


The think tank meets six times a year, four virtual and two live.  Past live meetings included tours of Georgia Tech, BuiltWorlds and the U.S. Capitol.  Future meetings will continue to be held at innovative locations that will help enlighten the group on progressive technologies that can make a difference in the roofing industry.


“It is about education and the initiative to understand and then disseminate innovative technologies into the roofing industry,” stated Heidi J. Ellsworth.  “One of the ways to attract the new generation and a diversified labor force is to incorporate the use of technology including robotics, drones, software, cloud solutions and cutting-edge technologies that we are not even aware of yet.”


For more information about RT3, visit www.rt3thinktank.test.

RT3 Members Discuss the Current Issues, Trends and Opportunities for Technology in the Roofing Industry

by Anita Lum

Technology has been at the forefront of nearly every industry for the past decade and roofing is no exception. The industry is ripe for change and has been transforming rapidly as more and more contractors embrace the use of technology in their day-to-day operations. David Huval of National Roofing Partners interviewed Trent Cotney of Cotney Construction Law, Lynn Foster of AccuLynx, and Tom Whitaker of Harness Software, to learn more about the current issues, trends, and opportunities with technology in the roofing industry during the International Roofing Expo in New Orleans.

Both Cotney and Whitaker expressed a current challenge that the whole industry can resonate with – the lack of skilled labor. To combat that need, the adoption of technology in the workplace is critical. Technology can be used to supplement this shortage by doing more with less; there are currently programs geared towards all facets of construction, including project management, work orders and health and safety.

Opportunities for technology in the industry are plenty. With the integration of applications in the workplace, the industry as a whole can really go digital. For instance, smartphones and tablets have become part of our daily lives, so integrating it into our businesses should be the next step. As Foster put it, “…the next couple of years is really going to be the mobile revolution.” This technology will allow instant transmission of information from the field to the office, which is critical to increase efficiency, decrease risks, and drive performance.

Other trends in roofing technology include drones; “Drone technology has gotten so much better over the last few years and it’s going to continue to make a huge impact,” said Whitaker. Cotney mentions the use of blockchain, a new way of engaging in contract payment method, to improve productivity by cutting out the middlemen.  According to Foster, integration is also set take off in the next couple years with “all these different entities getting together on one platform and integrating.” This will ensure much smoother processes by keeping all business information in one space.

While the roofing industry has been slow to adopt the new technology into their processes, this is beginning to change. With the technology tools identified by Cotney, Foster, and Whitaker, roofers can streamline workflows, manage clients, and share projects across the board, and ultimately grow their business.

Watch a recap of the interviews below.

RT3 Members Spend the Day on Capitol Hill

By Shashi Bellamkonda, Surefire Local.


It is a good day when you can meet a group of technology thought leaders and exchange notes.  The occasion was the meetup of Roofing Technology Think Tank (RT3), a consortium of thought leaders exploring emerging technology solutions for the roofing industry at the U.S. Capitol on March 6, 2018.


Showing the power of networking, Heidi Ellsworth of  and co-founder of RT3, reached out to Sasha Bernhard, Legislative Aide to Senator Cantwell and created a program of talks from inspiring leaders. Thank you both very much. Of course, it wouldn’t have happened without the persistence of the amazing Laura Bartolozzi who made sure everyone got to this meetup in one piece and David Huval, both from National Roofing Partners (BTW, thank you to NRP for sponsoring the startup costs of RT3 and for the lunch and coffee, and for sponsoring the reception.)


High level takeaways:


Sasha Bernhard – Legislative Aide to Senator Maria Cantwell, D-Wash.

At a previous visit to the House and Senate a few years ago, I was amazed at the smartness, intelligence and enthusiasm of the staff of the House of Representatives and Senators. I am confident that this is a very good reason why America is such a great country. The people we elect for the most part surround themselves with excellent people. I was very impressed by Sasha’s talk where she laid out all the ways that a group like RT3 can influence the conversation both to the public, contractors, media and the legislature. Everyone can make their voice heard if they take the initiative to reach out.


Congressman John Delaney – D-MD, 6th District

Congressman Delaney
Congressman Delaney (D-MD)

Rep. Delaney launched the AI cause and acknowledged that there will always be disruption  “In my view, there is tremendous potential for AI to be a positive transformational force, but also understandable concern about the impact that disruption could have on existing jobs.”


This is a good position, almost every speaker acknowledged that the nature of jobs will change and it is important to think about how to “upskill” the workforce to make them suitable for the new jobs that will be created and some jobs will disappear.


Reid Ribble – Executive Director, National Roofing Contractors Association

Reid is the new executive director of the National Roofing Contractors Association and this week about 400 roofing professionals flew into Washington, D.C. to make their voices heard. Reid mentioned a few areas where roofing professionals can make changes. The perception of the roofing industry in the Congress and Senate is driven by the opinions in the media, homeowner complaints about a few bad players. In order to change the perception all around, all professionals have to join together. Showing up in strength definitely helps. Technology advancement in the roofing industry should be highlighted and professionals should think of more innovation. Reid mentioned a thought of how roofing contractors control the roofs where so much of rainwater touches. IF there was a way to collect and use this water this would help with such a rare resource in the world “water” ( Water according to Reid is costlier than oil)


Dr. Nicol Turner-Lee – Fellow, Center for Technology Innovation at the Brookings Institution

Heidi Ellsworth, Sasha Bernhard, & Nicol Turner-Lee
Left to Right: Heidi Ellsworth, Sasha Bernhard, & Nicol Turner-Lee

Dr. Turner-Lee started her talk with a stark truth that half the population on this earth is still not online. While there is a rapid change in digital platforms, predictive analytics, automation, and machine learning, small and medium businesses are finding it hard to keep up. Over 66% of the new jobs in the US are created by small and medium enterprises. The rise of automation and AI will dismantle jobs and render some positions obsolete. 


Specific to the roofing Industry:

Major goals are productivity and the application of innovation

  • Construction robotics
    • “Masonry robots” – speed up brick pattern courses
    • Wearable robotics, including exoskeletons for mobility to robotic arms for strength
    • Drones for equipment delivery and to check on inventory
  • Big data analytics
    • Jobsite efficiencies & optimized equipment
    • Weatherization
  • 3-D Printing
    • Showing up in cranes for improved layering of concrete
    • Mapping & design
  • Remote management and design
    • Pre-fabrication through digitization


Overall these speakers inspired the group to take back thoughts and work into their businesses and the community.

Roofing Technology Think Tank (RT3) Chooses Leadership

RT3 has secured the services of veteran industry marketing communications professional Karen Edwards to advance the efforts of the organization.

Roofing Technology Think Tank (RT3), a group of progressive roofing professionals focused on technology solutions for the roofing industry announced that it has chosen Karen Edwards as its communications and engagement leader.

In this role, Edwards will lead the RT3 membership in engagement activities that drive the group’s technology research, evaluation, testing and thought leadership to continue to promote the adoption of technology into the roofing industry. She will also manage all of RT3’s communication efforts, ensuring that the group’s message and efforts surrounding the adoption of technology are effectively shared with contractors, manufacturers, distributors and industry media.

“RT3 is very excited to work with Karen on moving the RT3 initiative forward and taking it to the next level,” said RT3 co-founder Dale Tyler. “Her background in the roofing industry combined with her understanding of how to introduce new technologies into the industry from her time spent as a marketing leader at EagleView bring the perfect skill set to RT3.”

Edwards has been a marketing professional for more than 25 years and has focused the past 15 years on marketing for the technology and construction industries. She led the contractor marketing program during her tenure at Carlisle SynTec and oversaw the marketing behind the company’s secondary brands including Versico, EcoStar, Insulfoam, Carlisle Coatings and Waterproofing and Carlisle Residential before moving on to lead marketing efforts at EagleView Technologies. As president and owner of Casimir Group, Edwards provides strategic marketing consulting for roofing manufacturers and contractors, she is also the editor for and leads Marcomm activities for the Property Drone Consortium.

She has a Bachelor of Science degree in Communications from Millersville University of Pennsylvania and resides in the York, Pennsylvania area. When not working, she enjoys traveling, relaxing on a beach, partaking in good food and wine, taking long walks and yoga.

About Roofing Technology Think Tank (RT3)
Roofing Technology Think Tank (RT3) strives to find innovative technology solutions to be used within the roofing industry. RT3 provides insights from progressive thought leaders both inside and outside the roofing industry along with practical resources for implementing potential solutions successfully. The organization will encourage and enable contractors to embrace technology as they seek to grow their businesses. With a commitment to disseminate technology advancement information, RT3 will help build the professionalism and appeal of the roofing industry. http://www.rt3thinktank.test.

Drones Helping Building Owners Assess Damage, Prioritize Repairs and Monitor Job Progress


National Roofing Partners (NRP) has implemented the use of drones as part of its continued commitment to incorporate the latest technologies into its operations.

Hurricane Maria devastated Puerto Rico in the Fall of 2017, leaving the island in the dark and national corporations unable to communicate with their facility managers to determine the extent of damage to their properties. One of NRP’s client, a large national retailer had 12 locations on the island and needed a way to survey the damage to their buildings to prioritize and schedule repairs.

NRP partnered with a drone service and sent teams onto the island to conduct assessments of their client’s properties. By capturing that aerial view NRP was able to show their client the extent of the damage so they were able to evaluate and prioritize repairs. The buildings that had obvious visible damage such as holes in the roof were elevated to the top of the repair list.

Re-roof in progress.

Once repairs were underway on the roofs, NRP delivered weekly progress reports utilizing the aerial drone imagery. NRP Senior National Account Manager Mallory Payne said that the use of drone imagery has provided the client a clear understanding of how the repairs are progressing. “Before using drone imagery, we relied on contractors to send us photos but they were taken on the roof, which isn’t always the best angle for a true understanding of job progress,” explained Payne. “The drone imagery is captured from above and provides a view of the entire roof where is it easy to see exactly what has been completed and what is still left to do.”

The use of the drones in Puerto Rico went so well that Payne says NRP is making it a standard operating procedure. “Previously, we used to send clients progress reports using a drawing of the roof and marking it up with comments as to how the job was progressing,” said Payne. “Now we just send them a link and they can view the photos of the work from any web browser.”

There were some kinks to work out in the beginning since the drone flyers that NRP is working with are not experts in roofing, they are experts in drone operations. Payne worked on developing three different types of flights with specific instruction on what to photograph on each project. Those three types include HVAC equipment flights, aerial overviews with individual roof section images captured and project progress flights.

Re-Roof in progress, almost complete.

Since determining the types of photos needed and developing the three flight types, the drone technology has been a key part of every project.