Hartzell Construction’s Transformation
The Acumatica Construction Edition implementation was smooth and Hartzell’s team immediately erased one of their biggest frustrations: Everyone could be on the system at the same time, Reinaldo says.
The company has 40 Acumatica users and Anderson doesn’t have to worry about adding expensive seat licenses as the company grows because of Acumatica’s consumption-based pricing structure.
Hartzell purchased the Construction Edition and implemented Acumatica modules including CRM, Financials, Project Management, Inventory, Intercompany, Distribution, Field Services, and Outlook integration.
Seamlessly Integrates Front and Back-office
With Acumatica installed, Hartzell Construction gained seamless integration and connectivity, giving executives and managers a holistic view of the company, allowing them to view all its different entities and project details, in real time – no matter where they are.
Acumatica streamlined and automated the company’s entire operation, from its subcontractor approval process to job cost reporting to inventory, improving its total gross margins at least 15 percent, Anderson says.
“For me, the biggest benefit is to be anywhere in the world and see what’s happening in my business- our overall finances and each job,” he says. On previous vacations “my wife hated it because I was calling the office all the time. (With Acumatica’s mobility app) I can understand what’s happening inside my company without having to be in the office looking at paper.”
Improved Team Communication Eliminates Wasted Time
Acumatica’s seamlessly connected applications, such as CRM and Financials, have improved communication between all departments, Reinaldo says. Acumatica adoption is high; even the company’s long-time employees have embraced the modern software due to its ease of use.
When it comes to search, “Acumatica is thousands of miles ahead,” he says, adding the fast, accurate search capability helps everyone save time.
With Acumatica Construction Edition, project managers are connected to the office and can see how they are performing against budget, which subcontractors need to be paid, and even understand the profitability of a current or past project. Stella Carneiro, Hartzell Construction’s Controller estimates she has saved 20 to 25 percent of her time previously spent looking those items up for project managers, allowing her to now concentrate on higher priority tasks.
With a simple drill down, project managers can see critical project data, material arrival timelines, invoice approvals, and track the actual expenses applied to a project – information they didn’t have previously.
Tracking Critical Data Improves Gross Margins
With the improved data made available with Acumatica Construction Edition, Hartzell Construction “can catch things before they are red lined and fix issues ahead of time,” Stella says. She estimates the firm has reduced the number of unprofitable projects and contributed a 10 percent increase in gross margins. Stella previously ran quarterly reports which Anderson Pinto then poured over trying to figure out why a project was in the red. It was hard for project managers to provide an accurate picture of expenses three months after a project ended, he says. Now everyone has critical data at their fingertips.
Better controlling inventory bumped gross margins another 10 percent, Stella Carneiro says. “Before inventory tracking was minimal so we’d end up purchasing something twice or hold inventory for something we were not going to use. Today, inventory is much better controlled and that’s money we aren’t going to lose anymore.”
Eliminating Paper Improves Productivity
“I wasted a lot of time with paperwork,” says Anderson, explaining he hopes the company will be paperless someday. “Acumatica has cut 60 to 70 percent of our paperwork. We used to have an entire room with paperwork on projects and we no longer have that, which to me is amazing.”
Instead of spending time shuffling through hand-written receipts and jotting things down on paper to reconcile and understand what happened on a particular project, he now looks at a dashboard that provides all that information and more.
“A good 70 to 80 percent of my time is now spent helping my guys and the business grow,” Anderson says. “My time is spent properly managing the company and improving the company’s bottom line.”
High Praise for Service, Continual Development
Anderson Pinto had high praise for Acumatica’s service and dedication to helping customers succeed.
“We’re very impressed with the response we receive when a problem has come up,” Anderson says. “They really go after the issue and take care of it; there’s no better thing than to hear from my staff that we got a response right away.” In addition, he praised Acumatica’s development team for fixing problems promptly and listening to customers when they provide input on new features they’d like to see. “It’s like we get software customized to us rather than the standard in the industry where you spend a lot of money to have software customized,” he said.
Hartzell Construction: Rapid Growth with Improved Profitability
Anderson Pinto and Reinaldo Mesquita are now laying the groundwork for process changes that will improve Hartzell’s operations and grow revenues. One reason they chose Acumatica Construction Edition is that the software doesn’t pretend to be an all-in-one construction management program but offers an open API so third party software can seamlessly connect.
For many in the construction industry, that means working well with Procore Construction Management Software and other construction applications, which Acumatica does. Hartzell is implementing SmartSheet, ProEst Construction estimating, and is evaluating electronic signature and barcoding options. In the future, Anderson plans to add customer and vendor portals to allow them to see project statuses and to upload invoices, among other tasks.
“I’m very happy I chose to go with Acumatica Construction Edition,” Anderson says. “The potential is there to take us to the next level and we’ve just scratched the surface.”