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Meadowcroft leaves the days of paper well behind


by Brad Halcrow
January 30, 2015

Meadowcroft Limited Meadowcroft Limited is based in Guernsey in the UK. They're a building services company that has been in business for more than 50 years. We caught up with owner and Managing Director Paul Meadowcroft to discuss how simPRO Enterprise has helped him become the first paperless contractor in the Channel Islands and his plans to become the local industry leader.

According to Paul, before he switched to simPRO form filling was a never ending chore which was a major productivity drain for his workers. The company’s highly-paid engineers, who are paid to provide electrical services to the facilities management industry, would waste hours filling out records just to help managers keep track of what they had been doing. That has all changed now the company has gone paperless with simPRO. “We’re the only company in the Channel Islands who are fully non-paper,” Paul said. “We’re now at the stage where the guys are running their own jobs. They can enter jobs, they can enter quotes and they can update their timesheets.” “There’s no more sitting around on a Monday morning for an hour-and-a-half drinking tea and filling in time sheets.” Meadowcroft Paul says that while change is hard for the staff of any business, a lot of his employees have really embraced simPRO because of their pleasure at getting away from filling out forms.

Eliminating errors

Meadowcroft had originally started with a rudimentary system which consisted of a daybook which engineers would pick jobs out of. Then it moved to a system of paper job sheets. Unfortunately, as the business grew, this led to regular mistakes. “With the sheer volume of paper and jobs and slips coming back from wholesalers, it was inevitable that parts would get lost, missed, miswritten or misunderstood so administration went sky high and there was even less time doing the actual work,” Paul said. Now, the error rate is virtually nil as customers book jobs online and engineers order their own parts directly. “Our customers can create our jobs for us and send them to us how they want them with all the descriptors. All we have to do is schedule an engineer to go and do it,” Paul said. “The paper alternative to that is just a horror-show. Now, the guys can look after themselves. They can buy their own materials and it can all be monitored very easily and remotely from any position.”

Shooting for Number One

As Paul has quickly achieved the productivity benefits of simPRO, his larger competitors have floundered trying to implement other enterprise management systems which are not purpose-built for field services firms. Paul, who has already grown his business from six workers to 35 in the past seven years, is now aiming to be the leading building services contractor in Guernsey. “The ultimate goal of simPRO for me personally is to make the business more fluid. That’s going to be an advantage which then allows me and the other project managers to grow the business properly,” he said. “We have been spending a lot of time doing administration tasks which isn’t the best use of our time. Instead, we need to be growing the business and employing more people, setting them up to go and do their job properly.” “It’s about the growing the business into one of the real competitors on the island. We’re third in line at the moment and I am hopeful that in the next six months we’ll be leading.” “It’s a big ask but the only way we can do it is with the right tools and that’s where we’re headed so it’s full steam ahead.” The full video case study details other ways that Enterprise has enhanced Meadowcroft’s processes to increase profitability.

Author


Lover of strong coffee, craft beer and retro motorcycles. Sharing stories as Journey Partnership Manager for simPRO Software.

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