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The Best Tool in Your Toolbox — A Conversation With Apollo Concrete Coatings

Tl;dr

Jason has been using CompanyCam for about three years and now wonders, How did we actually work without it?” Jason and his team document everything, and it has saved them from many false damage claims. Being an Operations Manager, he decided to implement a multi-step process to ensure efficiency with his crew. The crew now takes a photo after completing each step, within the CompanyCam app. Jason is now instantly up-to-date and can communicate clearly online (without the unnecessary drives across town).

CompanyCam Pro users pay $19/​month, but according to Jason Miller, that small fee is worth it. It guarantees you and your crew a genuine peace of mind. Being secure in your work goes a long way. With this confidence you are able to maximize time and labor, as well as minimize false damage claims.

Jason has been working for Apollo Concrete Coatings for 6 years and has been effectively using CompanyCam for 3 years. Follow along below as Jason shares how CompanyCam has become his secret weapon for fighting off false claims.


What challenges did you face in the painting industry that lead to looking for a solution like CompanyCam?

We were looking for a solution that would help our crew look at the job ahead of time and understand where they were going. 

We do a floor day. I operate six crews, so we’re doing six floors a day. When a crew goes to a home, they complete the job in one day. Before CompanyCam, our crews didn’t know how to prepare for the job or analyze any known/​identifiable obstacles because they couldn’t see the job ahead of time. 

CompanyCam has set forth a new precedent for us. We know exactly what we’re walking into. A lot of the questions are already answered before we even have to ask them.

How did CompanyCam solve these problems?

When we set up an estimate for our floors, our sales staff will go out. The first thing they do upon arrival is take a photo. They pull up CompanyCam, the address will pop up, and they confirm that the address is correct. 

Then, take the first photo outside of their home. Then they take some overall photos of whatever area we’re working on. Whether it be a porch, a garage, a back patio, a front patio, they will take photos of it. 

If we have to repair anything, they use the text feature in the CompanyCam and add it to the photo stating, Please build this up.” This has to be repaired.” Customer will move furniture off the porch.” Any note the sales staff think would be relevant for the job, they leave on there. We are booked three months out, so this sales process happens several months before.

A lot of the questions are already answered before we even have to ask them.

It’s unfair to say, Remember when you were at Mr. and Mrs. Smith’s house?” to my staff. They are running 6 – 10 estimates a day. They’re not going to remember every house three months later. 

So now I can pull CompanyCam up and view their old photos. If they have any questions like, Hey, can we do this job?” I pull up CompanyCam, and I can see everything. 

I like that it’s instant – photos are uploaded in real-time. As soon as they take the photo, I can view it. It really helps me plan out the job and be able to thoroughly price the job. 

Without CompanyCam, we didn’t see the obstacles that were in front of us. My crews were going in there blind. CompanyCam changed that. Now every one of our crew members has a CompanyCam account.

Now, when they look at their job in the morning, it’ll say, 123 Main Street restroom assessment.” They open it on CompanyCam and can see what obstacles they’re going to have in front of them. They know, oh, we got to bring this and that.” 

Our crews start at 6:30 am, but our sales staff don’t until 9:00 am. With CompanyCam, we don’t have to bother the sales staff. We can answer questions through the app.

Saving time, saving money, saving fuel. It’s become our biggest tool we consider to have in our toolbox.

I’m on the road a lot. Even with the travel, I can communicate with my crews and sales staff on CompanyCam from wherever! I utilize it on my iPad. I utilize it on my phone. Whatever it may be, if anyone has a question, they text me, I pull up CompanyCam, and I can see everything. 

Do you think we could do this? Do we have the material to repair this? Is this job too big? Is this job too small? Do we have room for this in our schedule?” By viewing the photos, I can instantly know what to do. I don’t have to drive there! 

Saving time, saving money, saving fuel. It’s become our biggest tool we consider to have in our toolbox.

What was your photo documentation process before CompanyCam?

Before CompanyCam we had Manila folders. And they would write on them, Need to move furniture out of the garage.” Garage has a hole in the back corner, must be repaired.” Look for three steps. Those must be coated also.” 

On every folder, we found ourselves having nothing short of a novel to read! Things were also easily forgotten. My crews would read it and forget about it. 

Now, with CompanyCam, if there is a three-step process to follow, there will be a photo of each step. And if we work in a garage and it’s raining, for example, they can take a picture saying, Side door access in case it rains.”

There’s no more blame. There’s no more he said, she said. It’s all on CompanyCam. It has our mistakes down probably by 75%.

We’re using CompanyCam to max capacity. Now our file jackets, our job folders per se, are just short and to the point. Just name, address, and everything else will be in CompanyCam. 99% of the time on our files say, See CompanyCam.” 

First, the crew knows exactly where they’re going because our sales staff took a picture of the house. 

Then second, the project shows everything that the job entails. If there are special instructions, there will be photos with it. There’s no more blame. There’s no more he said, she said. It’s all on CompanyCam. It has our mistakes down probably by 75%.

How did you hear about CompanyCam? What intrigued you enough to download a free trial?

We use a national chemical company called Penntek Industrial Coatings. We have a dealer meeting” every year in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. During this meeting, a CompanyCam representative explained the app to us. And that is where we jumped on board, right there! 

Seeing the PowerPoint slide show of what CompanyCam could do and how we could use it, I knew it was something for all industries. Whether it be concrete coatings, painting houses, doing roofs, cutting lawns. Whatever it may be, CompanyCam is a great tool to have, not only to protect yourself and your company but to protect your employees. 

The benefit of it is the production, the time saving, the Before and After photos, etc. We utilize every bit, every single day.

How much time does CompanyCam save you weekly?

It easily saves me 10 to 12 hours a week of reviewing or driving! It’s that simple. 

In CompanyCam, we utilize the text, arrows, and circles to highlight things. It is the key utilization tool to maintain a smooth process. Every day, all six of my crews have particular steps in certain points of their jobs. For each completed step, they take a photo in CompanyCam.

That does two things for me. Because the images are time-stamped, I can see the speed of the job and crew. I use that time-stamped feature as a watch-over-status for the crew. I’m in the loop if they’re maintaining the schedule, working on time, and having any issues. 

I can open up CompanyCam, click on any one of my guys, and see, Okay, it’s noon. He’s here. He’s at this step.” And if he isn’t at the right step, I’ll give him a call. And say, What’s going on? Why are you still on this step in this photo? I see you started this process at 9:00 AM, why are you still on it?” Then they can explain either machinery broke down or whatever it may be. 

CompanyCam is the tool I use to maintain production in a timely manner.

Some companies use CompanyCam as a clocking in and clocking out system. It works great for accountability. You can track your crews from a distance. Has CompanyCam prevented any mixups on a jobsite?

CompanyCam has probably saved us thousands upon thousands of dollars. 

We document our area before we start the job. Case in points would be, there was an in-ground pool we were working on. For in-ground pools, we do a coating system. This particular in-ground pool had steps that were all cracked. 

Our sales staff was at the house and they photographed everything. Later, when our crew was done with the job, the homeowner said that we caused the cracked steps. It was going to be a $2,400 replacement. 

But we pulled up CompanyCam! We showed them CompanyCam with a time-date-stamp upon our arrival for the estimate (which was three months before we did any work) and the crack was in the photos. The homeowners had no legal bind! Everything stopped right there. 

Whether the homeowner was being dishonest or not, our crew knew it wasn’t our fault because of the thorough documentation we had with CompanyCam.

What CompanyCam feature provides the greatest benefit to businesses like yours?

The Before and After feature, because it shows the quality of work we do. I also like the time-stamp photo feature because it helps me manage the production of my employees. 

There is a secure feeling you have when prepared for a job. We photograph everything ahead of time – there’s no more saying we did damage that we didn’t do. It saves us time, money, and manpower. If we did not have CompanyCam, we’d be out there repairing things we didn’t damage.

Would you recommend CompanyCam to other businesses?

I would 100% recommend CompanyCam. 

If you’re on the fence about it, I would say do exactly what we did: give it a try! Use the free trial. That’s what got me in. 

I used it and after a couple of weeks I started saying, How did we actually work without it?” 

CompanyCam is cheap and it gives you can buy peace of mind. It helps us out. We are better prepared. Everything runs a lot smoother. We aren’t waiting for our crew members to text photos anymore.

It is a great tool to have, not only to protect yourself and your company but to protect your employees.

I don’t have to worry about work photos taking up space on my phone either. With unlimited CompanyCam cloud storage, you can just take the photos. 

All you’ve got to do is get the app. Take the photos and all your users can see them on CompanyCam. We even have subscriptions for our office administrators, too. It works well!

What three words would you use to describe CompanyCam?

Oh, boy. Three words to describe CompanyCam? That’s a tough one.

Professional because it makes us look professional when we’re out on the jobsite.

Number two is documentation. Everything is documented in CompanyCam. We love that. Documentation is probably the biggest.

The third one is communication. CompanyCam has minimized the number of phone calls and texts and emails because we can just pull CompanyCam up. Our text messages now say, I need you to look at 123 Main Street on CompanyCam.” They don’t have to explain anything further. 

It makes our communications so much easier, so much shorter, and allows us to have more time during the day to do our work, rather than trying to figure out issues that we’re having without seeing the problem. It is efficient.


CompanyCam may be the contracting tool you’re looking for! Get started for FREE!

Thank you for your time, Jason Miller. Not only do we appreciate you using our app, but being so openly passionate and supportive of it. Jason Miller works for Apollo Concrete Coatings, a division of Apollo that focuses on concrete floor coatings with a wide array of color options. 

Since 1976, Apollo has provided quality construction and services to the WNY area. Whether your needs are commercial or residential, Apollo has the experience, expertise and professionalism that you are looking for.

Learn more at their website.

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