Category: <span>Software</span>

RT3 members team up to talk bi-directional API technology

Join RT3 members JOBBA and RoofersCoffeeShop on June 30, 2021 at 2 p.m. as they team up for a webinar to discuss bi-directional API technology and how streamlined workflows can help contractors get their software to work for them.

With so much new technology and software applications out there to help, it is easy to end up with a system that is siloed and unconnected. Copying data from one system to another can take hours and cause delays, errors and ultimately affect the bottom line.

Scott Keith, Eugene Zukowski and Steven White from Jobba will help us understand API Technology and how to customize these systems to work for your business.  They will walk us through some of Jobba’s essential software tools as well as updated functions to the platform.  

Join us for a discussion on how their contractor-driven approach streamlined the workflow process and gets software to work for you. Jobba is more than a roofing CRM that helps you optimize your business; they seek partners who work with you to ensure you are getting the most out of your investment.  

This RLW will touch on the latest API, how essential it is to customize functions and tools around the customer, updated functions and Jobba customer support. You won’t want to miss out on this great opportunity to learn how to get the most out of your software and painlessly unify your data on one powerful platform. 

Register now for this RLW to learn API technology, customizing systems that work for your business and how to unify your data.  

10 Questions Roofing Companies Need to Ask When Looking for New Software

By Karen L. Edwards.

With so many software solutions on the market, it can be hard to figure out which one is right for your business.

So, you’re at the point where your business would benefit from implementing an estimating software solution. How do you know which one is the right solution? We turned to experts from RT3 member Estimating Edge to offer some tips on what you should be looking for and what questions you should be asking.

Adam Oaks, CEO at Estimating Edge, said, “Some solutions will portray that they can do just about everything.  That of course is never the case.  Some solutions try to be everything to everyone, but that usually means they are just OK at a lot of things, but not that great in any one area.”

He advises that you look for best in breed solutions – ones that work well with the other software that you might be using to run your business while steering clear of those that offer add-ons. “A good example might be an HR solution that also tries to handle your accounting with an add on module.”

Adam says that contractors should ask the following questions when selecting a solution:

  1. Is this software the best for my company’s specific need?
  2. Does it have an open scalable platform?
  3. Is the software scalable and does it allow employees to access and work virtually?
  4. Does it fit the roofing company’s employees, processes or workflows?
  5. Does the software company have experience in commercial roofing?
  6. Does the software company offer knowledgeable support teams, training and service?
  7. What does the industry say about the software?
  8. Does the software company have a history in the industry?
  9. Will the software fit our budget?
  10. Is it Best of Breed?

In their free e-Book, Estimating Edge dives deeper into each of these questions to help you understand why you should be asking a question and what each one means for your business.

Download your copy of “10 Questions Roofing Companies Need to Ask When Looking for New Software.”

Learn More about Estimating Edge, visit their RCS Directory.

Get the latest industry news delivered to your inbox when you sign up for the SmartBrief e-newsletter. 

Source: RoofersCoffeeShop

RT3 member AccuLynx named FrontRunner for construction project management software

AccuLynx, the leading business management software for roofing contractors, announced today it was named a FrontRunner for Construction Project Management Software by Software Advice. FrontRunners is designed to help small businesses evaluate which software may be right for them.

“We’re proud to be a FrontRunner in our software category,” said Katie Badeusz, Director of Marketing at AccuLynx. “AccuLynx is trusted by many of the top residential roofing contractors in the U.S., and this recognition reflects our continued commitment to making our software the best choice for roofers looking to grow their businesses.”

FrontRunners is published on Software Advice, the leading online service for businesses navigating the software selection process. FrontRunners evaluates verified end-user reviews and product data, positioning the top scoring products based on Usability and Customer Satisfaction ratings for small businesses. FrontRunners for Construction Project Management Software can be viewed here.

About AccuLynx
AccuLynx is the leading cloud-based software application for roofing contractors. Since 2008, AccuLynx has helped thousands of contractors—from rapidly-growing start-ups to multi-location operations—streamline their processes and grow their businesses. AccuLynx’s all-in-one solution includes easy-to-use business management tools, such as estimating, production management, aerial measurements, material ordering, photo sharing, custom reporting, unlimited document storage, field applications, and more. AccuLynx is a preferred vendor of CertainTeed, GAF and Owens Corning, and has direct integrations with QuickBooks, ABC Supply, EagleView Technologies, SkyMeasure by CoreLogic and others. For more information, visit our website.

Disclaimer: FrontRunners constitute the subjective opinions of individual end-user reviews, ratings and data applied against a documented methodology; they neither represent the views of, nor constitute an endorsement by, Software Advice or its affiliates.

The important questions to ask when selecting roofing software

By Heidi Ellsworth, RCS Partner.

The question is – are you asking the right questions about potential roofing software?  Every day contractors encounter companies selling the next best thing to grow their roofing business. Sure, it can sound great, but it’s so easy to get lost in the minutiae of choosing a software and end up going down several trails that really do not pay dividends for the big picture – a stronger, more profitable company. The right software can relieve many of your pain points, like labor tracking, productivity, diversification, job profitability and more.  But, you need to ask the right questions to ensure you choose the right product.

As roofing companies are looking for the right software there are many questions to consider. Here are 7 tips and questions to help:

1. Labor Tracking
You will want your roofing software to include labor tracking features. This will not only help with getting invoices out faster, but it will assist you with having a clearer understanding of your job ROIs.
Question – Does the software track labor?

2. Customer Data
There are several Customer Relationship Management (CRM) systems and many of them integrate with project management software. Some systems offer customer portals where you can share data, photos, job progress, inspections and invoices with customers at their convenience.
Question – Does the software offer a customer portal?

3. Mobile and Table Use
It does not seem possible to survive in today’s world without a smart device and that is especially true when it comes to business. Smart phones allow contractors to be in touch with their customers immediately – giving them a clear edge when it comes to customer service.
Question – Does the software work on all mobile and desktop platforms?

4. Cloud-based Access
Today, it’s all about communication.  Progressive contractors can operate and communicate with customers and employees from anywhere, anytime. This is only possible with cloud-based solutions. Every step of the process is at the fingertips of management, crews and the sales team. The ability to communicate across numerous, if not all employees, allows for strong communications that correlates into a great customer experience.
Question – Is it cloud-based and available to all employees, anywhere, on any device?

5. Aerial Measurements
Aerial technology has been in place since 2008 and it just keeps getting better. Gathering roof measurements traditionally was a time-consuming process prone to mistakes such as mathematical errors or simple human error, but has now become a quick, easy and reliable technology.
Question – Does the software integrate or include aerial measurement technology?

6. Estimating
Advancements in estimating software, as well as the introduction of cloud-based access, enables strong estimating technology for virtually any size roofing contractor. Not every solution will fit every business right out of the box so it’s important to understand your company’s needs, how the technology fits into your existing processes and what new efficiencies can be realized through the implementation of an estimating tool.
Question – Does the estimating software fit the business needs?

7. Implementation
The most important thing you can do before purchasing any new technology is to take the time to do your research. Talk to other contractors you find through roofing associations or networks and see what has worked for them. You can also look at online reviews and utilize free trials to try out and get a full understanding of the options that are out there and how they are implemented.
Question – How will this work for the company/employees and how easy will it be to implement?

Jobba Trade Technologies and many other technology companies are also members of Roofing Technology Think Tank (RT3), an organization, which RCS is a part of, that helps roofing contractors understand  important questions to ask about technology.

Stay up to date on the latest roofing industry trends when you sign up for the RT3 Smart Brief e-newsletter. 

Source: RoofersCoffeeShop.

How to help your crew adopt a roofing app

By Kathryn Brill, AccuLynx.

You’ve read about the benefits that new technology like roofing apps can bring to your business. So you’ve decided your team should get on board and start using technology to deliver more efficient and streamlined service. You’re excited to start reaping the benefits of the roofing app you’ve selected—but the process is just beginning.

Roofing apps like the AccuLynx Crew App save many roofers time and money. Not only do they help crews deliver better and more efficient service, these apps integrate with your project management software to help your production teams stay organized. But one of the most difficult parts of new technology adoption is getting the rest of your team on board. Whenever businesses use a technology for the first time, it can be challenging to get buy-in from the entire team. In particular, getting your crews to use a new app often takes time.

How can you help your crew adopt their new roofing app and ensure they’re using it effectively? Here are some techniques to help you—and your crew—out.

Make it Easy to Use

Successful technology adoption starts before you purchase a subscription. When you’re evaluating a software or an app for your crews, think about how they’ll be using it, and what barriers might hinder their successful usage. Whether or not you select a technology for your team should be influenced by how well you think the rest of your staff could use it.

This is true for all software, but it’s especially true for anything your crews might work with. Will the app function correctly out in the field, or will they be stuck waiting for a buggy app to load? Is it simple to use or does it require a lot of training? Is it easy to find the things they’ll need, like job instructions or directions to the site?

Before you pull the trigger on new technology, take a moment to walk through it from the point of view of a crew member. The easiest app to adopt will be the one that is intuitive and straightforward to use, and that contains all the elements your crews need to support their work.

Be Mindful of Language Barriers

Many crews communicate more effectively in Spanish, not English. Some may not speak much English, if any. In order for these crews to utilize a roofing app, this has to be kept in mind. An app that assumes the user is a fluent, native English speaker is not going to be a helpful app for your crew to use. In fact, it likely won’t get much usage at all.

Fortunately, some new roofing technology is able to help you overcome these language barriers and communicate with your crews. For instance, the AccuLynx Crew App has a Spanish-English translation function that enables bilingual usage of the app. Data in English can be translated into Spanish in the app for your crews, and anything they enter in Spanish can be translated to English. With features like these, your crew will be able to comfortably use an app, no matter their English fluency.

Train Your Leaders

Your crew leaders and foremen are your allies in implementing any new tools. If you have these leaders on board, it’ll be easier to get the rest of the crews using the technology. They’re a bridge between you and your crews, so use them strategically to help with roofing app adoption in the field.

Get crew leaders up to speed on the new app and teach them the ins and outs of using it. But go beyond just the training basics. Walk them through how to troubleshoot the app for a crew member that’s having difficulty working with it. Make sure they’re equipped to answer questions about why, how and when the crews are using this new technology. You’ll have a smoother transition when you give leaders the tools they need to assist in implementation.

Create a Culture of Consistency

One of the biggest barriers to technology use is internal expectations. Is the whole office using the software in the same way? Is there a clear sense from leadership as to what the technology is for and which old processes it’s replacing? When are crew members expected to be up to speed on these changes?

If you want your team to adopt a new roofing app, you’ll have to stay consistent and clear. Use the technology yourself the way you want it to be used by the rest of your team. For example, if you used to communicate job instructions through text messages, but you want crew members to use the app to view instructions, make sure you stop texting notes about the job and start adding them to the job files within the app. When you tell your team to use a new process, but you continue to do business the way you always have, teams are left scrambling, wondering what you actually expect of them. Consistent internal usage of your new technology will go a long way towards adoption of that technology by your entire team, from leadership to office staff to crew members.

Make the Benefits Clear

Why did you want to switch to a new technology in the first place? The reason is usually some pain point that has been plaguing your business. Maybe job details have been falling through the cracks, or it’s been difficult to reschedule your crews when weather hits. Maybe you’ve been having trouble documenting all the work done on a job site in one place. Whatever the case, this isn’t just another piece of technology—it’s a possible solution to an issue that’s made work more difficult.

Onboarding your crews to a roofing app is easier when you focus on the benefits of the new technology. These crews are likely experiencing the same pain points you are, and this tool will make their lives easier, not just yours. Adopting a new technology can be an annoying process—it’s hard to make a change from something you’ve done for a while, even if there are flaws in the old system. By framing the change in terms of what it helps and why it’s important, crews will take ownership of this technology usage and be more willing to make the switch.

Ultimately, technology only works to benefit your business if the entire organization is on board. Since roofing crews change all the time and often have little contact with the rest of the business, it can be especially difficult to help them adopt a new technology. But with a few strategies—and selection of a roofing app that is intuitive to use—you’ll be able to make the transition much smoother. And you’ll see the benefits go beyond your crews and extend to the entire office.

Stay up to date on the latest roofing industry trends when you sign up for the RT3 Smart Brief e-newsletter. 

Source: AccuLynx

Streamlining estimating and leveraging technology on the roof

By Karen L. Edwards

After seeing a new technology at the International Roofing Expo, this company adapted it to fit their needs, improving estimating and eliminating errors.

Have you ever heard of a Technology Innovation Specialist at a roofing company? Meet Lisa Garcia. She is that specialist at Tremco Roofing and Weatherproofing Technologies, Inc. (WTI). Lisa recently completed the rollout of a unique technology application that has streamlined the company’s estimating, reporting and ordering processes and she did it nationwide in just two years’ time.

It began in 2017, when company Vice President Mardee Billingsley was attending the International Roofing Expo (IRE) where she met the team from RoofSnap. RoofSnap offers a mobile app designed to let contractors use aerial imagery of steep slope roofs and outline the roof area to obtain accurate measurements. While geared toward the residential contractor, Mardee recognized that there was an opportunity to use this on commercial roofs. After she returned from the IRE, she needed to find someone who could bring her vision to life. That person was Lisa.

Lisa wasn’t a stranger to technology or Tremco. She had been at the company for 12 years and spent time teaching contractors about technology. Developing an app for commercial estimating and determining the number of materials needed for a job was a natural next step. Lisa was able to meet with the RoofSnap team in person several times since their office was a few hours’ drive from hers.

“This was an app originally developed for shingle roofing, so we had to create our own system for commercial roofing,” explained Lisa. “They did a lot of development for us to make it work.”

Figuring out the coverage rates for the products and developing the formulas that the app would use also was Lisa’s responsibility. “I am not a big fan of math, but it was good to be able to accomplish this because I not only learned a lot, I proved to myself that even though I might not like math, I was still capable of doing it,” said Lisa. “I had to teach myself how to use Photoshop so I could get all the product photos into the app.”

In about four months, the app was ready for use. They selected 10 supervisors from each of their regions around the country for a pilot program. While feedback was good, it wasn’t long before they realized that the supervisors weren’t the best pilot group since they weren’t always the ones preparing estimates. A second pilot was conducted with those who do the most estimating and the results were great.

By using the app, estimators are able to use the aerial imagery of the building to obtain measurements, drop pins to indicate potential problem areas, select the products and automatically determine the amount of product needed for that building. “This app has really standardized all of our reports,” Lisa said. “Everything is consistent, branded, professional and the finished product is a very nice report.”

The company has rolled the use of the app out over the last year and Lisa said she just finished the last training in July. Feedback has been positive overall. “It’s really helped our estimators be more accurate and more efficient,” Lisa concluded. “It’s been convenient for those estimators who no longer have to put up with traffic in urban areas or who don’t have to make a 200-mile drive to see a building in our more remote areas.”

As the roofing industry advances, consider working for a company that is leading the way in terms of implementing technology not only in their product development but on the roof and in their processes as well.

Stay up to date on the latest roofing industry trends when you sign up for the RT3 Smart Brief e-newsletter. 

Source: RoofersCoffeeShop

3 ways to eliminate mistakes that cost you

By RT3 member Jobba Trade Technolgies.

Elmer’s glue to seal your TPO? I don’t think so… so why use the wrong tools to manage your business?

Surprisingly, many contractors still rely on time-consuming manual procedures and antiquated systems that are inefficient and fraught with potential for human error. Misspellings, wrong addresses, wrong amounts – not only can these errors frustrate your customers, they can end up costing you big time.

1. Guarantee You’re on the Right Roof

It’s happened to everyone – when you have a big customer with hundreds of properties or a smaller customer with a large shopping center, it’s easy for your crew to mix up addresses or roof sections. Having the aerial image, roof section drawing, and correct address together in one place is the only way to ensure they’ll get it right.

2. Ensure Your Invoices are Always Correct

Do you have one program for quoting and a separate program for invoicing? If so, that could mean two (or more) people are manually entering data in two places, leaving huge opportunity for error. Fortunately, you can significantly reduce or even eliminate the potential for error by incorporating an integration or automated synchronization between the two programs.

3. Remember to Follow-Up

You’ve spent hours quoting a job and probably hours acquiring a new lead. All of that goes to waste without a follow-up procedure in place! If you don’t use roofing software, consider using a spreadsheet to track follow-ups or even an online calendar with automated reminders.

For roofers using technology in their businesses, the ability to drastically reduce the opportunity for human error is just one of the many benefits they enjoy for better managing their businesses.

Stay up to date on the latest roofing industry trends when you sign up for the RT3 Smart Brief e-newsletter. 

Source: Jobba Trade Technologies

RT3 Member Acculynx named in Capterra’s Top 20 Most Popular for Construction Management Software

RT 3 Member AccuLynx announced that it has been named a Top 20 Construction Management software product by Capterra, a free online service that helps organizations find the right software. This year, the company’s roofing contractor software is ranked #5 on Capterra’s list of the most popular construction project management applications based on verified ratings from users.

“AccuLynx is proud to have been selected as one of the top 20 construction management software providers for the third year in a row, and we are even prouder to have moved into the top five,” said Katie Badeusz, Director of Marketing at AccuLynx. “This recognition is a reflection of our status as a top tier software application for roofing companies and our continued focus on customer satisfaction.”

Top 20 Most Popular Construction Management Software is an independent assessment that evaluates user reviews and online search activity to generate a list of market leaders in the construction management space that offer the most popular solutions. The Top 20 Construction Management report is available at https://www.capterra.com/construction-management-software/#top-20.

About AccuLynx 

AccuLynx is the leading cloud-based software application for roofing contractors. Since 2008, AccuLynx has helped thousands of contractors—from rapidly-growing start-ups to multi-location operations—streamline their processes and grow their businesses. AccuLynx’s all-in-one solution includes easy-to-use business management tools, such as estimating, production management, aerial measurements, material ordering, photo sharing, custom reporting, unlimited document storage, field applications, and more. AccuLynx is a preferred vendor of CertainTeed, GAF and Owens Corning, and has direct integrations with QuickBooks, ABC Supply, EagleView Technologies, SkyMeasure by CoreLogic and others. For more information, visit acculynx.com.

Source: Acculynx. 

5 Reasons To Harness The Tremendous Power Of WordPress

By RT3 member, Art Unlimited.

The Art Unlimited Programming Team has over 29 years of combined knowledge of building websites to fulfill our clients’ needs. We make our websites with WordPress, one of many website-building and content management platforms.29

Currently, WordPress is the largest website builder platform, holding 60% of the market share, which transfers to about 33% of all websites on the internet today. In fact, WordPress’s next closest competitors only hold 6 and 4% of the market, respectively (Joomla and Drupal).

WordPress sites host some of the biggest names, including Sony, Disney, PlayStation, and BBC America, but can handle your small businesses website as well.

There are probably a million reasons for WordPress domination among programmers, but here are the top five reasons the Art Unlimited Programming Team prefers WordPress.

1. Community Keeps it Free

“Free, you say? How can that be? Doesn’t someone need to make money from this?”
WordPress is more than a company; it’s a community. While this may sound hokey, it is very true. WordPress isn’t owned by one single person or business. They like to call themselves an “open source community.” It’s a group of tens of thousands of people who contribute to making the software. Anyone with a programming background can join the community. This community is also readily available for support and questions by its users. They even put on conferences multiple times a year! Once the software is made, it’s free for anyone to use and it is made to be copied.

2. A Plethora of Plugins To Do Practically Anything

The advanced features plugins add to a website are pretty cool. Most are free, but some have a minimal charge. Do you want to sell merchandise on your website? There’s a plugin for that. Do you want to put forms on your website? There’s a plugin for that (we really like Gravity Forms!). How about an event calendar? Yup, there’s a plugin for that also. WordPress has about 20,000 plugins made by the community, and you’re feeling adventurous, you can also try 3rd party plugins!
Before you install a plugin into your website, check the reviews and see what people are saying about it. Look for plugins with 4 stars and over 100,000 downloads to know they are good. You also want to check if the people who made it have a support team for questions. Some plugins are made and forgotten about, so make sure the plugin you pick is still being supported and is occasionally updated (within the last year) by the creator.

3. Own Your Website Files

This is the most exciting feature for our Art Unlimited peeps and something we’re most proud to offer. When we build you a website, we don’t own the files—you do! This is not something offered on any other website building platform. We will gladly host the files on our servers for you, but if you should at some point decide you don’t want us to host them, you won’t have to start from scratch! We can easily transfer them to you so you can continue to have your existing website. Other website building platforms insist on owning your files.

4. Easy to Optimize for Increased Ranking

Keywords and SEO (Search Engine Optimization) are always on our minds. When a website is lacking good SEO and the right keywords, search engines have a hard time finding it — which means customers have a hard time finding that website. WordPress includes an assortment of tools to help you incorporate keywords into your content. They even offer advanced features (plugins) which allow you to write specific metadata and descriptions for your pages. This will help the search engines find your pages, and even possibly move your website up in the rankings.

5. Google Prefers WordPress

According to digital.com, search engines like Google and Bing tend to rank websites which use WordPress higher than those which don’t. At one of WordPress’s conferences, Matt Cutts from the Web Spam team at Google presented, and says “WordPress is a fantastic choice, and solves ‘a ton’ of SEO issues, taking care of 80-90% of the mechanics of SEO.”

WordPress is a tried and tested website building platform we are proud to use! It helps us give a higher level of customer service to our clients. We can build custom websites which they own after we have built them. To learn more about our website building and hosting services, give us a call today!

Get the latest roofing technology news delivered right to your inbox when you sign up for the RT3 Smart Brief enews.

Source: Art Unlimited.