Langley Foxall
Jade Short

Building From The Ground Up - fermacell® Case Study

To date, we’ve been working with fermacell® now for over a year, after they were referred to us by a very good friend of the business. In that time we have created a web-based project management system, admin panel and an iOS application to go alongside.

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The beginning of our journey together
fermacell® wanted a solution that would simplify and improve their processes. Beforehand they were using a form of SaaS (software as a service) to create the forms they needed whilst using a combination of emails and manually creating a PDF from a word document. They came to us because they wanted something custom, tailored to their needs and with improved visuals for the user; they also wanted the application to create PDF reports for their clients.

In the initial consultation meeting we analysed their current systems and with their collaboration, we identified the areas for improvement. By the end of the meeting, we had agreed that replacing their off the shelf application with a custom build would be a big step in the right direction. This would also allow them to centrally control the future of the system and shape it accordingly.

Discovery Phase
As the leading gypsum fiberboard manufacturer in Europe, they have a strong professional responsibility towards the use of their products, therefore, they often produce reports for major projects in order to ensure the correct use and installation of their products and systems. With this in mind, fermacell® wanted the visuals to match their high-level processes and the freedom to customise their results. Due to the nature of their work they needed an application that would work offline, as their previous app did not do this. fermacell® wanted to find a better way to communicate between staff, head office, and clients as well as stopping any inconsistencies in reports. On top of this fermacell® wanted provisions for future development.

Throughout our journey, we had a few obstacles to get creative on. Ensuring the speed of the app and maintaining a strong user experience was essential for fermacell’s operatives on the ground and having the ability to quickly make notes and take pictures within the app was paramount to the success of user adoption. With the variability of the reports being produced, it was a challenge ensuring that the structure of the PDF’s was perfect each time.

Successes
This is the best part, seeing the outcome of the system we created and seeing the positive effects it has had on our clients. We built the application with the visuals to match the visions of the company and made sure it worked offline too. The implementation of the app resulted in more efficient work schedules as the communication between staff, head office, and clients are now stronger than ever. As a result of the application, the site visit management is now more effective with added features like the ability to book the next site visit and automatically adding it to the personnel's calendar, alerting site management to accommodate the future visit.

Super Forms
Whilst the users are talented and created great reports before the new app was introduced, they were often wildly different in their style of question answering meaning the customer would receive technically correct but inconsistent reports. The new site visit forms are clean, dynamic, easy to use and come with a targeted information zone for each question to ensure the consistency of the form completion bringing even the newest of staff into the delivery bracket of the most experienced site engineers.

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Successes Cont.
The time it takes to work through admin work has reduced due to quicker processes, the application has allowed fermacell® to redistribute the hours saved through quicker on-site processes which have had a direct impact on the staff's ability to spot and report on issues. The application has also allowed them to focus more on their customer service whilst on site.

Projects and Repeat Visits
Users needed a simple and reliable way to store their visits against a project by creating an admin panel to predominantly handle the completed site visits; the completed visit forms could be managed and even updated from this panel. Meanwhile, the app is making life simple for the staff to easily book visits in, by integrating the user's calendar and setting reminders of jobs, they never missed an appointment and increased the confidence of their customers.

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Since we have completed their system, they have requested to expand the application further by giving the customer more information with project packs. These project packs will help increase their brand recognition by including user manuals and free branded information all of which improves the relationship between fermacell® and their customers, which is a very effective sales tool.

If you have faced similar challenges with your processes and systems and are looking for solutions, give us a call on 01785 220892 or email us at info@langleyfoxall.co.uk for more information or a consultation on your existing system and processes.