Operating in the Greater New York Area as a full-service union scaffold and hoisting contractor, “Platform Solutions offers a full range of turnkey services, from pre-con design solutions, concepts, and budgets, building code analysis to final install, maintenance, and round-the-clock service.”
In business since 2018, Platform Solutions is no stranger to technology. Prior to GoFormz, Platform Solutions was using an application called Raken which is a mobile application used to track employee hours. The app also offered a digital form feature which allowed the Platform Solutions team to experience the benefits of digital data collection, resulting in a new understanding of the necessity of this technology. Over time, the app wasn’t able to operate effectively with their existing software systems so Platform Solutions switched over to a separate platform that would only focus on employee time tracking.
After having a taste of digital forms, Platform Solutions sought out a new online form solution that would not only operate with their existing systems but also allow for simple user adoption. Eventually, Platform Solutions found GoFormz, which they quickly discovered met their exact needs.”
Lewis Rhodes, General Manager at Platform Solutions explained in further detail, “When we discovered GoFormz had the ability to share documents online via email that was key for us. That’s when we realized we can move away from hard copy paperwork and go electronic.”
Adopting new technology is often a daunting task, especially in the world of construction. Paper forms can be found at almost every job site worldwide so changing the way construction paperwork has always been handled resulted in some pushback and hesitation at first. “[Construction workers] don’t like change so, initially, it was hard to get people on board,” Rhodes continued to explain, “they saw this change [to GoFormz] as a negative at first.”
Platform Solutions began using GoFormz with one foreman as a test run to be certain GoFormz would be a good fit for their company. “We were only using it for one foreman at the time when we were getting started,” Rhodes continued on to explain, “he seemed to find [GoFormz] extremely user-friendly so we made the transition to add more users to the account and show the rest of the foremen how to use it.” Quickly after some training sessions on how to use the platform, GoFormz was finally accepted by the field teams. “Now they realize it’s easier to fill out a form on a computer than have to handwrite everything else on a daily basis.”
The Platform Solutions team successfully uploaded twelve different folders worth of construction forms into the GoFormz platform that are primarily used for those in the field. Three of the folders stand out as the most critical to their operation: Safety Paperwork, ToolBox Talks, and Incident Reporting. From Daily Construction Logs to Forklift Checklists, digital forms are used every day at Platform Solutions. What makes their data collection impactful are the features that come with GoFormz, specifically emailing forms to other general contractors and safety managers, Drop Down menus, and Image fields.
“The general contractors and safety managers at construction sites tend to look for hard copies and if they don’t have it in their hands they feel like they don’t have it,” as Rhodes expressed the importance of having the ability to email forms online through GoFormz. Additionally, the Drop Down menu feature streamlines and further organizes the data collection in the field, Rhodes explained. “When a foreman opens a form and needs to add their name to the document, they select their name from the drop-down list, which speeds up their form-filling process.” Along with streamlined data collection comes visibility in the field and thorough documentation using the Image field. “Being able to take photographs in the field is great, especially since they can be downloadable from the form.”
ROI comes in many different forms and for the Platform Solutions team, they experienced significant time savings. This was most noticeable when Platform Solutions adopted a new safety program that required lawyers to review documentation from a specific time frame. ”
“Since we’ve had GoFormz for about a year now, that meant we were able to go to one location to pull everything from the year,” explained Rhodes. “Before it was with Raken, then it was with another, then it was on hard copies, and then it was also saved in computer folders.” Centralizing their data collection through GoFormz eliminated the risks of missing documentation, illegible handwriting, and lost hours of hunting for paperwork – further streamlining the review of their safety program.
As Platform Solutions continues on their digital transformation journey, they are looking to add a few new Template Fields to their existing Templates and complete their One Drive integration in the coming months.
First on the agenda is to start using the AutoNumber field, which auto-populates a new numerical value that continues to build upon itself every time a new form is created. This feature not only enhances record-keeping but also provides a clear audit trail of captured information.
Next on the list, is to incorporate Database fields, which work similarly to Drop Down menus, except it draws its list from a GoFormz Datasource. Their Datasource will reflect the 40-plus locations their foremen are located at to further streamline their data collection process. When compared to regular text entry fields, this approach reduces errors and encourages standardization, because it provides form users with a predetermined set of options to pick from – making it easier to complete documentation in the field for foremen and their crews.
Finally, Platform Solutions plans on fully completing their One Drive integration to further streamline their operation from end-to-end in the new year.