CHC Hydronics is a leading Manufacturers Representative and Package Systems Manufacturer of HVAC, Hydronics, Steam, Heat Transfer, and Plumbing Equipment. Headquartered in Hayward CA, CHC has operations across the Pacific Coast in Washington,Oregon, Montana, Idaho and Alaska. The company provides cutting edge products to reduce energy costs and protect environmental resources.
CHC not only sells appropriate products and parts, but works with customers to build extremely customized solutions that fit both within the building’s needs and the limited floor space available.
With their fast growth, CHC had spread across multiple warehouses and workcenters across the Pacific Coast. They also worked as Manufacturer’s Representatives for multiple leading equipment manufacturers.In addition, CHC’s FlowTherm Division provides a pre-engineered, packaged product that overcomes partners’ unique financial, dimensional, and timeline constraints.
CHC Hydronics installed FInancialForce ERP to streamline their financial and operational processes, improve visibility into their data and make better decisions across the organization.
Since manufacturing and fabrication was spread across multiple locations, CHC needed an easy way to track the time that their employees spent on specific jobs. They also needed to track the time that their service engineers spent on the field on repair and maintenance jobs.
This prompted CHC to look for a solution that could meet its evolving needs for time tracking. One that would easily integrate with its FinancialForce ERP system.
In 2019, CHC implemented PK4’s Time Tracker for Salesforce. Since the TimeTracker data was all in Salesforce, it was very easy to integrate the system with FInancialForce.
TimeTracker Project Creation
CHC customized the FinancialForce Production Order screens to allow for the creation of a TimeTracker Project. When a specific Production Order was ready for manufacturing and fabrication, users could simply push a Create Project button on the Production Order. This would create a Project within the TimeTracker that would carry the details of the Warehouse where it would be manufactured and the WorkCenter that needed to work on the job.
Time Capture based on Location
Each Warehouse and Workcenter used the TimeTracker in a Kiosk mode on iPads. The TimeTracker was configured to filter data such that only employees in that Warehouse and WorkCenter would be able to log time into Projects for that location. This was based on the Warehouse and WorkCenter details from the Production Order.
Easy Time Tracking
Employees on the fabrication floors used the TimeTracker’s easy-to-use interface on Apple iPads to track their time. Since the employees were tracking time on the TImeTracker Kiosk, they did not need to have Salesforce or FinancialForce licenses. So not only was time tracking easy, it was highly cost-effective too.
Labor Costs Capture on the Production Orders
When the employees completed work on a specific Project, they would mark that Project as Complete on the TimeTracker Kiosk. This would fire up a Salesforce Workflow in the backend that would take the Labor Hours and Cost from the Project and update them on the Labor lines in the Production Order.
Efficient time tracking for fabrication team
Since the time tracking was so easy to use and was right on the factory floor, CHC was able to get a much more accurate summary of the time spent on each Production Order. In addition, when needed, they were able to get the detailed hours spent on each project by multiple employees.
Detailed time data for analysis
Based on the detailed time tracking data that they now had, CHC was able to roll up the hours spent on fabrication and implementation to each of their manufacturer’s representatives. So labor costs on each product line was very accurate and clear.
Accurate billing for Service time
CHC also implemented the TimeTracker Mobile app for their Service Engineers on the field. Service Engineers would be assigned specific Service Sales Orders within FinancialForce. These would be converted to Project Assignments to the Service Engineers, again with just the click of a button. Service Engineers would have a list of all Assigned Projects for the day, listed on the TimeTracker mobile app on their phones. They could easily Check In and Out of each Assignment, which would track the actual time spent on the Assignment. When the Assignment was completed, a back-end Salesforce workflow automatically pushed the time back to the Service Sales Order in FinancialForce.This would then generate invoices to customers based on the time and materials that the Service Engineer had spent.
Salesforce Sales Cloud
TimeTracker in Salesforce
TimeTracker Mobile App for field service engineers
TimeTracker Kiosk app for fabrication and manufacturing teams.
As a Fortune Global 500 company, Johnson Controls is a worldwide leader in providing building technology solutions. With over 105,000 employees across 2,000 locations, Johnson Controls equips buildings across the world with automation systems, HVAC equipment, security and more, to keep their occupants safe, healthy, and secure.
Behind the company’s US$31.4 billion worth of sales sits the company’s Center of Excellence on Sales Operations – a network of engineers, contractors, and program managers which supports global sales teams with drafting project blueprints and designs.
While the Sales Operations Centre of Excellence (CoE) was previously embedded within separate business units, it was reformed into a separate business unit following a corporate reorganization in 2019. As an independent business unit servicing different regions and divisions across the company, the CoE was now an independent accounting entity. It maintains its own financial statements, accounting for (internal) revenue through billing other business units for services performed, and costs through careful tracking of employees’ time. In order to accurately charge these costs back to separate business units, time tracking was now an integral part of this accountability.
Adding to this complexity was the fact that some sub-teams within the CoE already had established legacy solutions and practices for time tracking. While some employees were new to time tracking, others were using disparate time tracking systems. For instance, while one team in Costa Rica was already using a time tracking system, another in APAC was tracking their hours manually on spreadsheets.
In their search for a time tracking solution, the Sales Operations CoE team at Johnson Controls had two key requirements. Firstly, the solution had to provide a seamless user experience. Secondly, the time tracking system had to be integrated with Salesforce.
PK4 Tech’s Time Tracker stood out as a strong contender as its deep integrations with Salesforce meant that time tracking data could easily be integrated with other sales and operations data already on the CRM platform. This helped to minimize the implementation complexity and efforts.
With the goal of unifying all teams under a standardized time tracking solution, Johnson Controls first started with a phased introduction of PK4 Tech’s Time Tracker. Within the first 2 years of implementation, 1,000 of over 4,000 employees in the global CoE organization were onboarded to the Time Tracker.
Improved Time Tracking And Cost Accountability: With the Time Tracker, employees were now able to log their hours with a level of granularity that was not possible before. For instance, where previously, the CoE team only tracked hours on a general basis, they could now break these hours down into pre-sale vs post-sale support, coordination time, administrative time, etc.
This, in turn, has enabled the CoE to provide detailed statements of work and invoices when charging their services to other business units. The detailed breakdown of labor costs and services allows the CoE team to improve the accountability and accuracy of their cost chargeback.
Deepened Business Insights: With the custom Salesforce reports and dashboards, management could now get a comprehensive review of their business, and access granular data like labor and service cost breakdown by region, project type, or even task type. This provides Johnson Controls with more accurate data and information for resource planning and strategic decision-making.
Reduced Overall Administrative Burden: The integration with Salesforce also helped to reduce the administrative work required from both end-users, as well as the management and finance teams. Employees within the CoE team were already familiar with using Salesforce and introducing a time tracking system within the CRM platform greatly eased their transition towards this new time tracking process. Furthermore, having the Time Tracker integrated into Salesforce also allowed for the synchronization of data on labor costs with established invoicing and finance processes, minimizing the administrative efforts for the finance teams.
Zigler Law Group, based in Chicago IL, is a national class action and complex litigation firm committed to protecting consumers and investors from corporate misconduct. Their attorneys have successfully litigated countless complex cases across multiple industries. Their experience includes litigating consumer fraud, securities fraud, breach of contract, breach of warranty and breach of fiduciary duties, amongst others.
Depending on the case being litigated, the Zigler team includes attorneys, paralegals, employees and contractors.
As a national class action litigation firm, Zigler Law Group is required to keep very accurate time records of all time spent on cases. All attorneys, paralegals and other staff members need to keep very accurate time records of every minute spent on a case.
Time tracking for attorneys and paralegals is extremely hard. Most attorneys work on multiple cases, often for multiple clients on a given day. So it’s time-consuming and challenging to figure out what they worked on at the end of a long day. Combine that with the fact that they work in an interrupt-driven mode, with calls, emails, discussions and the whole time tracking problem is compounded.
Zigler attorneys and paralegals were used to tracking their time on spreadsheets. This itself was a big step up from having to reconstruct time from reviewing paper notes, emails and appointments whenever time needed to be accounted for.
Time-consuming: Each attorney, paralegal and employee maintained their own spreadsheets of time spent. So any reckoning of time for a case, meant reviewing and reconciling the spreadsheets of all the attorneys and paralegals that worked on a specific case. This was a very painstaking and time-consuming process.
Variations in case names: Attorneys and paralegals would code their work times for cases using different names for the same case. There were as many variations for the same case as the number of people working on it. Identifying the various names and collating the data was a nightmare.
Loss of data: When working on a case, an attorney could end up sending 10-15 emails back and forth in an hour. And all that work needed to be entered in granularly. While working with spreadsheets, invariably there would be some loss of time worked.
All these issues prompted the Zigler Law Group to look for an alternative solution that could meet its evolving needs for time tracking. And since they had already moved to Salesforce for tracking all their cases, they were looking for a time tracking solution that would work within Salesforce too.
In 2022, the Zigler Law Group implemented PK4’s TimeTracker for Salesforce. PK4 worked with the law firm to configure the TimeTracker to their exact requirements. The firm decided to use the TimeTracker’s Multiline Time Entry screen since it was very similar to the spreadsheet mechanism that the team was already used to. Since all cases that the firm worked on were already within Salesforce as a separate object, PK4 configured the TimeTracker to track time to that specific object. So the TimeTracker users just needed to select a case from the existing list of cases.
Decreased inaccuracies on cases
Since all cases were set up in the TimeTracker, the Zigler team no longer needed to enter the names of the cases. They just needed to select the name of the case from the dropdown. This completely eliminated the endless variations in the case names.
Timely Data Entry
Since the Zigler team was already working inside Salesforce on their cases, it was easy for them to track their time in the TimeTracker on a regular basis. The team now records their time within the TimeTracker between 6-8 times a day, Since the tasks and the time spent are fresh in their minds, the time entered is much more granular and accurate, ensuring that there is no under-reporting of time spent.
Easy contractor payment
Zigler uses contractors who are paid based on the number of hours worked. Since all time data is within the TimeTracker, it’s now very simple for Zigler administrators to pull end of the month reports for the time spent by contractors.
Instant, flexible reporting
The fact that all the time spent on cases is properly tracked and in a timely manner within the TimeTracker made a big difference to the Zigler Law Group. With all time entries correctly tagged to specific cases, running reports based on cases became a cinch for the Zigler Law Group.
The time that they spent previously reviewing and collating data from multiple spreadsheets has decreased from 4-5 hours per month to less than 3 minutes per month. Time that can now be put to much more productive use.
The Zigler Law Group Management can now easily answer questions such as:
– How much time attorneys/paralegals spend on specific cases and practice areas
– Perform detailed analysis of cases to determine time spent and profitability
– Analyze what cases take disproportionate amount of time
– Quickly assess the lodestar of a case for reporting.
Overall, the Zigler Law Group has found that data collection, collation and review have all become much easier with the TimeTracker from PK4. The Zigler Law Group saved over 99% of the time spent on data collation, review and reporting. Resulting in an overall saving of $ 2500 per employee per year.
As one of the leading transportation management software providers, MercuryGate International simplifies and centralizes freight transportation for logistics companies across the world. Their platform supports all modes of transport including ocean, air, rail, truckload, last-mile, parcel, and intermodal.
Based out of Cary, NC, Mercury Gate has been recognized as one of the Top 100 Logistics IT Providers by Inbound Logistics Magazine. MercuryGate also provides integrations, technology, and managed services partnerships.
MercuryGate Support is billed separately to some of their customers. For those customers, it is not a part of their subscription fees. With a Services Implementation team, a Customer Support team, and a developer group all working on customer-facing issues, MercuryGate had a hard time keeping track of the actual time spent on specific customer cases.
Since Services Implementation was usually a timed project service, that team used a Professional Services Automation tool called OpenAir to track their time. And that worked very well for the Services implementation team. However, as the Tier 1 and Tier2 Customer Support teams grew, it became imperative for the Support team to track their time. In addition, the developer group needed to spend time on Customer Support cases too, which also needed to be tracked.
Disparate Platforms: The Services Implementation team used OpenAir to track their time and material-based projects. The Customer Support team worked on Cases within Salesforce but needed to additionally log into OpenAir just to track the time that they spent on customer cases. The developer group used Atlassian’s Jira to keep track of their work. But they too needed to log in to OpenAir to record their time.
Siloed Systems: None of the systems talked to each other. Each group worked in a separate silo. It was hard to convince the Customer Support and Developer teams to record their times in a separate system. Following that, the accounting team needed to run reports in OpenAir to get an extract of the time worked on Cases and then download those reports as Excel sheets to send over to their billing system.
Poor integration: Since the Support Team spent the maximum amount of time on Customer Cases and worked completely in Salesforce, MercuryGate needed a system that would work easily and accurately within Salesforce.
This prompted MercuryGate to look for an alternative solution that could meet its evolving needs for time tracking.
In 2021, MercuryGate implemented PK4’s Time Tracker for Salesforce. PK4 added in a webhook module to automatically bring in developer work logs from Jira identified by Salesforce Case Number back into Salesforce.
Intuitive, efficient time tracking for Support Team
MercuryGate implemented PK4 Time Tracker’s Salesforce Lightning component within their Case object. The support team now saves time and has a much more intuitive system, because they can now stay on the Case in Salesforce. They no longer need to access a separate system to track their time. And ALL hours spent on a Case are now accurately tracked.
Improved Time Tracking Convenience
PK4 TimeTracker automatically brought the Jira work logs that were already being used by the Developer Group directly into Salesforce, tied to the specific customer case. Developers previously had to double-log their time in Jira and OpenAir. Now, they did not even need to click on a button to get their hours into Salesforce. The hours that the developers recorded in Jira are automatically brought into Salesforce through a webhook, provided by the PK4 TimeTracker.
Sometimes, the Professional Services Team that did the original implementation for the Customer needs to work on a customer case. Most of the PSA team does not have access to Salesforce. Those team members now use the PK4 Time Tracker web app to log the time that they spent on a specific Case. And that data too is automatically synced to Salesforce.
Decreased time and inaccuracies.
Before the PK4 TimeTracker was implemented, the Tier 1 and Tier 2 support teams needed to log into OpenAir to log their times. Because Accounting billed customers based on their Case numbers, the support team needed to create a task in OpenAir with the Salesforce Case number. Since the support team spent most of their time working on cases in Salesforce, they needed to spend additional time at the end of the day recording all the Cases worked during the day in OpenAir. This led to a lot of dropped hours and inaccuracies in the Case numbers. MercuryGate was reconciling time between Jira, Salesforce, and OpenAir making the whole process inefficient and inaccurate. With the PK4 TimeTracker in place, the whole operation now is streamlined and smooth.
Within the first month of implementation, MercuryGate noticed that the billed time for the development group and the PSA group had gone up. Because of the double logging issue, developers were reluctant to log into a second system and record their time. Now with the Jira work logs being brought automatically into Salesforce, all work hours spent on billable cases are being accurately recorded. This has turned into real dollars for MercuryGate since the developers were doing billable work for customers that were not actually being billed.
What do universities, data centers and hotels have in common? They all need highly-customized heating, ventilation and cooling systems to help maintain an optimum temperature and keep occupants (human and machines) happy.
That’s where CHC Hydronics steps in. Headquartered in Hayward, California, CHC is a leading provider of plumbing, mechanical and HVAC equipment to commercial buildings and project engineers across North America. Operating two factories and partnering with over 100 contractors, the company designs and supplies these custom-built systems to fit within each client’s unique space and needs.
With dozens of shop floor workers and field service technicians spread across hundreds of active manufacturing and field service projects at the same time, it is important for CHC Hydronics to understand how much time and labor it spends on each client, and on each product line.
To that end, the company has always used a time-tracking solution to help them keep track of how much time employees were spending on different tasks and projects. Before they implemented PK4 TimeTracker, CHC was using another third-party solution for labor tracking in their production plants. However, this solution presented several limitations in scope and use cases, and challenges:
Lack of features: It only had limited features and functions, and lacked the in-depth capabilities for CHC to be able to sort and analyze their time data across different dimensions (e.g. by manufacturer, product line, or salesperson).
Inflexibledeployment: The prior solution only allowed them to track in-house factory labor. It could not accommodate time tracking for remote field service technicians, who needed to use manual timesheets to track their time spent on each servicing project.
Poor integration: CHC needed a modern solution that was aligned with their new cloud-based ERP solution, but their prior solution did not integrate with their Salesforce-based ERP system, FinancialForce.
This prompted CHC to look for an alternative solution that could meet its evolving needs for time tracking.
In 2019, CHC Hydronics implemented PK4’s Time Tracker as an upgrade to replace their prior solution. They also integrated the PK4 TimeTracker with Financial Force for better visibility.
Integration with Financial Force With both Financial Force and the PK4 TimeTracker being on the Salesforce platform, CHC was able to integrate the two platforms easily. All the shop floor workers’ time was directly integrated with Production Orders on Financial Force. The service technicians’ time was integrated with Sales Orders in Financial Force. In both cases, when a Project is completed on the Time Tracker, a labor line is added to include the cost. Thus enabling CHC Hydro to have a very accurate picture of the labor costs both on Production Orders and Sales Orders.
Improved Time Tracking Convenience and Accuracy
PK4 TimeTracker allowed CHC to integrate time tracking across two different groups of employees, unifying time tracking for both shop floor workers and field service technicians for the first time.
With versatility in deployment formats, CHC was able to deploy the time tracking app to end users in a format that best suited them: for shop floor workers, this meant clocking in and out via a stationary iPad kiosk on the factory floor, whereas field technicians could track their time spent on each assignment with a convenient mobile app.
Whereas shop floor workers were already used to these time tracking procedures, field technicians reported much greater convenience with the elimination of manual time sheets which they had to submit daily, as well as improved accuracy now that they could check in and out of projects on the spot. For CHC Hydronics, accuracy was of utmost importance, as they needed to make sure they were compliant with California’s Prevailing Wage labor regulations.
Ease of Integration, Data Reporting And Analysis
Secondly, the ease of integration of the Time Tracker with Salesforce and FinancialForce also enabled data automation and more robust, in-depth reporting. Combining factory production data and sales data from their ERP system with time reports from Time Tracker, CHC could now create dashboards and reports allowing them to track labor across several different dimensions – by project or client, product line, technician, etc.
These insights into their labor expenses proved useful not only for internal decision making – it also gave the company leverage for negotiating with business partners and clients. In particular, they could share detailed reports on time spent on projects and servicing to negotiate for better terms and rates.
Overall, the feedback from employees and the IT team has been very positive. Patrick Hamilton, IT Manager at CHC Hydronics highlighted the partnership and support as particularly outstanding: “PK4 worked closely with us to design a solution to fit our needs. The support we receive from PK4 has always been top notch, and any issues we face are always quickly resolved!”
Salesforce Sales Cloud
PK4 TimeTracker in Salesforce
PK4 TimeTracker Mobile App for field service engineers
CHC Hydronics is a leading Manufacturers Representative and Package Systems Manufacturer of HVAC, Hydronics, Steam, Heat Transfer, and Plumbing Equipment. Headquartered in Hayward CA, CHC has operations across the Pacific Coast in Washington,Oregon, Montana, Idaho and Alaska. The company provides cutting edge products to reduce energy costs and protect environmental resources. CHC not only sells appropriate products and parts, but…
As a Fortune Global 500 company, Johnson Controls is a worldwide leader in providing building technology solutions. With over 105,000 employees across 2,000 locations, Johnson Controls equips buildings across the world with automation systems, HVAC equipment, security and more, to keep their occupants safe, healthy, and secure. Behind the company’s US$31.4 billion worth of sales sits the company’s Center of…
Zigler Law Group, based in Chicago IL, is a national class action and complex litigation firm committed to protecting consumers and investors from corporate misconduct. Their attorneys have successfully litigated countless complex cases across multiple industries. Their experience includes litigating consumer fraud, securities fraud, breach of contract, breach of warranty and breach of fiduciary duties, amongst others. Depending on the…
As one of the leading transportation management software providers, MercuryGate International simplifies and centralizes freight transportation for logistics companies across the world. Their platform supports all modes of transport including ocean, air, rail, truckload, last-mile, parcel, and intermodal. Based out of Cary, NC, Mercury Gate has been recognized as one of the Top 100 Logistics IT Providers by Inbound Logistics…
What do universities, data centers and hotels have in common? They all need highly-customized heating, ventilation and cooling systems to help maintain an optimum temperature and keep occupants (human and machines) happy. That’s where CHC Hydronics steps in. Headquartered in Hayward, California, CHC is a leading provider of plumbing, mechanical and HVAC equipment to commercial buildings and project engineers across…