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Anyone know of a snowplow program to show progress during a push

Discussion in 'Business Fundamentals' started by dutchhook, Dec 21, 2009.

  1. I'd like to find a snow routing/scheduling, dispatching program that I can use like I used to use a humongous whiteboard showing how far along each site has been plowed, number of hours on-site, showing how many hours each crew has worked, and track equipment and hours.
    I don't care about billing, estimating or anything else.Just want to make a couple of companies' snow removal efficient.
    I looked into QExpress, but don't have Quickbooks. ServiceLedger seems like it might be the ticket, but haven't gone through the trial yet.
    Nediso looks interesting too.
     
  2. big acres

    big acres Senior Member
    Messages: 653

    We've looked at a few of those programs too, but still haven't found the complete package. We have been entering into an excel sheet during the storm... that way we can add hours up or cut and paste service records for client reports.
     
  3. Sounds like a summer project. shouldn't be that hard to put together.
    I wonder if one of those file sharing sites would work like Google Docs, where you could pop up your excel spreadsheet online, and any of your vehicles/foremen with laptops/phones can update your excel sheet right over the internet.
    Happy New Year BTW
     
  4. big acres

    big acres Senior Member
    Messages: 653

    Then you"d be counting on your operatord to enter everything... scary. We now have a dispatch person who takes calls upon arrival, departure, and logs what was done directlt into excel. Just did this first time and it worked well. It was nice to have organized records in the morning when customers called. The dispatcher would then send them to the next site as directed by whoever is managing the push.
     
  5. plowinginma

    plowinginma Senior Member
    from MA
    Messages: 326

    Excel is the program to use.. Make your own spread sheet.. It is kind of involved.. and time consuming.. but worth it.. Gather as much data as you can now.. and work it over in the summer.. A little tip would be how much snow is on the ground..the day.. how long have you been plowing this storm.. ( you would not believe how fast everyone had all there lots done on new years eve!!).. it is more the human and weather element you are tracking as opposed to the equipment..
     
  6. dakotaskustoms

    dakotaskustoms Senior Member
    Messages: 100

    Ive been working on this idea for a few weeks now... Its a FileMaker Database program.

    Im not done yet ... but you can at least get an idea of where its headed... I run this in my truck on my Toughbook. When I get back to the office, it syncs with my office computer and I can print out the invoices.

    I am wanting to release this for other contractors ... but I need to get my butt in gear and finish it..if it stops snowing here in Maine that is...

    [​IMG]
     
  7. fireboy6413

    fireboy6413 Senior Member
    Messages: 396

    dakota, that looks real nice, let me know when your done I wana buy a copy from you
     
  8. dakotaskustoms

    dakotaskustoms Senior Member
    Messages: 100

    SO not to hijack this thread...

    But what kinds of things do you want to be able to track?

    If there is a need for something out there.. (ive looked at Blizzard Buster, while lots of features... IMO looks like a 8yr did the outline...)

    There is already the ability to:
    Customers:
    -Name
    -Contact Info
    -Rate
    -Photo/Map
    -Directions
    -Property Notes

    Storm Info:
    -Date
    -Start Time
    -End Time
    -Auto Calc Storm Time
    -Snow Amt.Predicted Amt & Actual Amt
    -Plow Start Time
    -Plow End Time
    -Auto Calc Plow Total Time
    -Mileage Start
    -Mileage End
    -Auto Calc Mileage Total
    -Auto Calc Total Propertys Plow
    -Auto Calc 1 Property/Miles Drive Total

    Thats the quick list anyways...

    Again, DUTCHHOOK ... Not trying to hijack your thread... just looking to get input to see if we all can benefit from the need.
     
  9. maelawncare

    maelawncare Senior Member
    Messages: 871

    Why not just use gps? It shows where the truck is in real time and keeps the records for you.
     
  10. I'm good with GPS, have used it for tracking employees before. I'm really ok with Big's idea of a dispatcher. The dispatcher is the focus point of my idea, and ok with employees or managers updating the progress from laptops/phones from the field.
    I think what would be revolutionary for snow removal is a "war room" where all communication, progress, resources used, resources LEFT, down equipment etc... is reported and sifted through to get a real time VISUAL map of what's going on.
    Maybe I've been watching too much of the History channel, watching troop movements on color maps and watching WWII japanese navy personnel pushing little wooden boats around the pacific ocean on humongous tables!
    I like all the ideas though.

    steve
     
  11. ajslands

    ajslands 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,033

    youve been watching wrecked on speed it soundz like,
     
  12. plowindiesel

    plowindiesel Senior Member
    Messages: 192


    LOL I thought I was the only one who watched that show! I love it, and yes there dispatch center could be considered a "war room"ussmileyflag
     
  13. ajslands

    ajslands 2000 Club Member
    Messages: 2,033

    to whoever said they were good with gps, are there any electroics that can be attached to a vehicle (well hiden) to track where employees are, and make sure there not sitting at the bar
     
  14. Westhardt Corp.

    Westhardt Corp. Senior Member
    Messages: 845

    I did a little looking around, and have used Comet Mobile Worker in the past (waaaaay too complex). I think FoxTrax looks pretty nice, but have not used it.

    http://foxtraxgps.com/ft/index.html

    HTH...
     
  15. fast trac

    fast trac Junior Member
    Messages: 3

    Nero gps tracking service can moniter the location of every vehicle in your fleet in real time. They can also add beacons to your plow and salter attachments to show when they are active and not just sitting on a lot..lol
     
  16. Herm Witte

    Herm Witte Senior Member
    Messages: 555

    Have you looked into Crew Tracker?
     
  17. merrimacmill

    merrimacmill PlowSite.com Addict
    from MA
    Messages: 1,822

    Ya, I did. $9400 for the version that allows you to only have 50 customers. Then its $2600 a year for a "maintenance fee".
     
  18. Westhardt Corp.

    Westhardt Corp. Senior Member
    Messages: 845

    Clearly I'm in the wrong end of this business....

    :D
     
  19. shott8283

    shott8283 Senior Member
    Messages: 258

    Hate to drudge up old threads.. I was wondering if Dakota made any progress on that software
     
  20. Welderguy24

    Welderguy24 Member
    Messages: 87

    This makes two of us!!!