Previous tool: Spreadsheets
Established in 1889, The Boldt Company has grown to become a prominent construction firm in the United States, renowned for its innovative and high-quality projects. With a commitment to constant progress and embracing state-of-the-art technologies, Boldt continually seeks opportunities to improve its operations and provide exceptional value to clients.
By adopting Bridgit Bench, Boldt has been able to enhance its workforce planning process, allowing them to simplify operations, improve collaboration between various functions and locations in the company, and make well-informed, strategic decisions.
Jeremy Moe, an Operations Manager, and Andy Sparapani, a Project Technology leader at Boldt, sat down with us to discuss the benefits they have experienced with Bridgit Bench.
With no centralized platform to plan their people, the team at Boldt had to rely on a series of spreadsheets for workforce planning. Moe discussed the challenges of trying to create an efficient process with inefficient tools:
“The spreadsheet was our biggest problem. We had multiple tabs we were maintaining within a single spreadsheet. We had a field team tab and an office team tab. It was a pain to maintain because, of course, nothing’s linked. It didn’t have any real-time connections. When something changed, you had to remember to update it in multiple locations. It just turned into a much longer activity than it should have been.”
Because of the time-consuming spreadsheet maintenance, Moe found himself dedicating some of his personal time to preparing for the week ahead.
“I never really felt like I had the time to keep up with the resource management during my day job. To be honest, it was a Saturday when I used to try to hammer through all of our resource planning.”
It was clear a change needed to be made to their workforce planning process.
In an effort to leave their reactive, spreadsheet-driven process behind, Boldt began a trial run of Bridgit Bench with three of their offices volunteering to test it out. Moe’s operating group was one of the volunteers and quickly realized the power of the platform and how it could help them move to an easier, data-driven, proactive process.
Easy and Flexible:
Upon getting into Bridgit Bench, Moe was quick to point out how easy it was to use and keep updated:
“One of the first things I noticed was that the editing and the maintenance were much easier. Once we had information entered into the system, it was much less effort to update anything.”
Along with the ease of use, the tool proved to be extremely flexible for Moe and Boldt’s style of planning:
“The different views we could turn on in Bench allow us to look in from the people view or the project list view. There are just endless ways to filter the information so that we can see it the way that we want to.”
Being able to allocate your people, build project teams, and make updates from anywhere in the tool makes it easy to customize workflows and streamline the workforce planning process to the way you like to view information and make decisions.
Since updating roles and projects is now easy for the team at Boldt, the benefits of Bridgit Bench have evolved over time. Originally, it was just about having an easier way to do workforce planning. Now, though, the benefits have allowed Boldt to be more strategic as a business in general.
“With Bridgit Bench, our meetings are less about getting the information into the system and more about strategy, which has been fantastic. We strategize on how to fill vacant roles on a project or where there might be pockets in our business where someone isn’t fully utilized. We can grab onto them and avoid hiring another person since we can see that someone has the capacity to take on some more work”.
By using Bridgit Bench, the Boldt team is able to facilitate collaboration on multiple fronts. By getting more people into the system and engaging them in the workforce planning process, the team at Boldt can enable more productive conversations about their people planning across the entire organization. Moe tells us:
“Initially, it felt like it was mostly on me, but it’s very easy to bring somebody in and have them utilize the system. I’m able to take a step back and have several key individuals in our group do some of the data entry and editing and maintenance of the system as we hear about new information that comes through on projects. I’ve been excited that I can take a step back and not have to be in the day-to-day management of Bench and watch the rest of the team take it on pretty easily.”
Collaboration on data entry and editing isn’t where it stops; Boldt has found cross-functional value in Bridgit Bench, allowing for more strategic conversations with their Business Development and HR teams. Sparapani tells us:
“HR and Business Development both have access to Bench and they can see the staffing changes as well as trends, and it leads to a conversation around business development and available resources and how that affects speeding up and slowing down in certain areas. HR can see the number of needed roles climbing and the number of available people not matching that and initiate the conversation [around recruiting]. It creates a proactive engagement as opposed to a reactive one on hiring, which is more burdensome and more expensive.”
Furthermore, since the entire enterprise is using Bridgit Bench, they’re able to share resources effectively across locations:
“The power behind the tool [allows us to] look across our business to see if there are resources available in other parts of the country that we can bring in to help a different group that might be short on resources.”
Working with Bridgit and Change Management:
When implementing new software, especially in a business as complex as construction, change management can be difficult and time-consuming, leading to frustration and ultimately limited value from the software. Both Moe and Sparapani had high praise for the implementation process and the support they received from their Account Manager, Nathalie Todi.
Moe told us about his experience with the Bridgit team:
“As far as the change management goes, I don’t feel like there was much of a struggle. The Bench support team that helped us launch was great because the initial setup takes some manual entry to get everybody into the system before our HR information was linked to it. Nathalie and the Bench team were great. We gave them all of our information, they plugged it in for us to make sure that we could build it and then we just started using it as much as we could.”
Sparapani talked to us about his experience working with other software providers and how working with Bridgit was a breeze in comparison:
“Customer success has been key in the role and value of the tool. With other technologies we’ve deployed, we’ve experienced the product side evaporating after implementation is done. The constant touchpoint and engagement with our teams [from Bridgit] is as important, if not more important, than the tool itself. The human element is present and that’s been apparent throughout the entire process. They’ve been able to get teams deployed and engaged quickly.”
“There are also simple things, like Nathalie sitting in on the planning meetings, engaging with us as an observer or consultant. It really helps the team feel more comfortable with a new tool to know they’re well supported. It makes it feel more like a simple step forward as opposed to a leap forward.”
Even with all these great benefits, the true music to our ears came from Moe when he told us his:
“I would say I got my weekend back.”