Herzog Contracting Corp. faced a huge challenge when it saw that at least 10% of the equipment used were substituted for each job. The only way to organize and monitor the equipment was for each crew’s foreman to take the “honour system” instruments. The related cost of lost and stolen property had a huge effect on the viability of Herzog. The company itself replaced more than 1,000 tape measures with one project.
The contract for the construction of the Denver West Corridor Light Rail Project was signed by Herzog in 2009. Dynamic Systems Inc., a software company which develops barcode data collection applications, was asked to help them implement a solution for asset management;; The solution included a handheld computer device with the ability to mark and check barcodes on each company’s tool.
Before picking a mobile computer device, there were many items to remember. First, the organization sends crews to the workplaces. No centralized office is available and normally, there is no Internet. In addition, the design of the working atmosphere required a heavy-duty approach not compromised by dust, debris or the falling in concrete. When using bar codes, they had to be resilient and compact enough to accommodate some kind of instrument. Barcodes had to be scanned rapidly and conveniently to log into the device without interrupting a job.
The whole Herzog challenge solution included Honeywell’s mobile device Dolphin 7850 and Honeywell’s handheld scanner Focus 1690 with Checkmate app Dynamic Systems for tooling and 1D or 2D bar codes.
With a user-friendly touch screen gui, and a signature capturing feature that permits tools to be electronically signed, Honeywell’s Dolphin 7850 encourages accountability and possession. The signature also provides the corporation with a legal record if costly instruments or appliances are missing.
1D and 2D pre-printed barcodes have been developed to satisfy the basic size and longevity requirements of Herzog. Honeywell’s Focus 1690 is a handheld field imagery scanner that reads these barcodes easily. The scanner uses Checkmate ToolRoom software from the Dynamic System, which can load data from the barcodes into an electronic library to monitor tools. The app will identify resources by utility and more closely track costly tools. Without wireless connectivity, changes are not done in real time, but can also be carried out many times a day, so that the database can be accessed at any time to monitor the precise locating of specific tools.
Since Herzog employed the latest mobile computing and bar code solution in May 2009, the depletion of tools and facilities has dropped to an estimated $20,000 a month. The firm has seen a new sense of duty and ownership between foremen and crews. Furthermore, the ability to know where those instruments are at any given stage saved time and improved efficiency.
Herzog looks forward to using the same smartphone and barcode systems on other websites and expects the same advantages. The corporation proposes a duplicate system for the forthcoming North Texas Rail Project.