If you've ever worked on a construction site, you’ll know management inefficiency leads to a generally slower workpace filled with constant coffee and cigarette breaks while workers wait for delegations from the site HQ. There’s quite a bit of paperwork to be done when it comes to field reports, invoice anottations and customer to client communications, that is, if you do all of those things the conventional way.
The Swedish construction industry is now given the opportunity oil up their site management machinery, and get the workflow moving faster with the help of Fieldly, the fresh SaaS that turns construction sites smarter and more dynamic.
Fieldly was founded by the company's current CEO Daniel Krusenstråhle. He, together with current CMO Sven Paulin did their extensive business homework by conducting development-themed interviews with construction companies in Skåne and Leif Sjögren, former Chairman of HiB Sveriges Byggindustrier, in order to find out what was and what wasn't working in the management and administration sector.
Fieldly has three levels of use: one for the actual management body, another used by the fieldworkers and the third, last layer is there for the client side. All of the individual layers of the app becomes the full tool that is Fieldly once they're connected through the grid of devices it collects and forwards its data from.
Imagine a collective message board with features revolving around stuff you’d expect to see in the construction business: tools for field reports, time reports, employee check-ins, a project’s relevant contact list, file attachments, internal messaging tools, invoicing features; and the list goes on. In this jungle of features, one aspect that clarifies to whom these features are meant for is the apps aforementioned layered nature.
In construction site administration, most documents are done physically in paper form or typed into excel files. Management using Fieldly will be given access to a set of control panels that facilitates the real time delegation of tasks for fieldworkers as well as data reception from the site itself.
The real footwork is done by the construction workers, one of the few things that hasn't changed. Using the iOS or Android app in their mobile devices, workers can file field reports, log their travel data which is then accounted and generally keep management up to date of the site status. It’s a thorough communication channel between administration and grass root workers, which according to Fieldly customers, can save up to an hours worth of site work each day.
In addition to streamlining every process from ordering supplies to invoicing, Fieldly puts, and wisely so, an empowering element of transparency for the client as well. Clients have their own, designated client area from which they can follow each of their projects and connected tasks in real time. This way they can clearly see who’s doing what, where and for how much. Additionally, the app gives room to clear out completed tasks both parties are pleased about by collecting signatures that are then made visible in the project page.
The app has a lot of features to digest, but the overall layout of the app isn't too aggressive, and simple rules of logic have been nicely applied to create a software that should establish itself with no more than intuition. But just in case you don’t feel straight at home with the app, the Fieldly staff will happily arrive on spot to help you out with some consultation, free of charge (at least for now!).
The Fieldly app has been under pilot testing among five Helsingborg-based construction companies for a time of three to four months, and the company tells us they've acquired the same number of new client companies just recently. The official launch of Fieldly will take place on the 1st of September this year.
As for the business model, monetizing will be fairly straightforward: the company has set a fixed user fee of €36/users. There are no contracts, as Fieldly is well aware of the unpredictability of construction working.
“We know a good deal of people from construction; our chairman has been working in construction from as early as the sixties. We know there are periods when there is no work, which is why the app can be purchased for as long as needed, with no long-term obligations”, said Fieldy CEO and founder Daniel Krusenstråhle.
Krusenstråhle goes on to explain that their field is relatively new and competition is relatively small.
“There are some companies which have a specific focus on some of the elements we have in our product, like Timesync, but no one else has an entire app that offers our features as extensively as we do.”
Fieldly is looking at over 55 000 companies with revenues of over 100,000 within the construction industry that would ideally become their target customers. Their focus right now is to pull off the proof-of-concept in Sweden, after which Fieldly would first set sail to Denmark and from there to the rest of the world.
In May and June 2014 Fieldly won two startup competitions in Sweden, Venture Cup and Business Challenge, which Krusenstråhle tells us has been of tremendous value, not solely due to the prize money, but as acknowledgement from the community.
As of today, Fiedly also announced the closing of their seed round, which amounted to €144 000, so I suppose a congratulations is also in place. Clap, Clap!