Phoenix has integrated DryLINK into iRestore to save contractors’ time. Users of iRestore can have their job information automatically imported into DryLINK and have the drying report automatically available in iRestore.
iRestore users now have easy access to the Power of DryLINK including jobsite data collection and remote monitoring. “We continue to partner with as many software platforms as we can to make life easier for restorers. We have heard over and over that restorers want our industry to simplify all the different systems on the market. This is another example of our efforts to do this for the industry” said Erin Hynum, Senior Director of Product Management for Phoenix.
“With this integration, it makes it even easier for restorers to send the documentation from DryLINK via iRestore to their customers and their insurance companies closing the loop on the proof you can provide to get paid faster” said Jack Lavender, Business Development Manager for iRestore.
This integration is an extension of our commitment to restorers to streamline and build the ideal automated workflows for their company and teams.
About iRestore iRestore is a provider of comprehensive restoration management software designed to empower restorers with the tools they need to streamline operations and achieve success. Built by restorers for restorers, our user-friendly platform offers a wide range of core functions, including Job Management, CRM, HR, Timecards, Scheduling, and more. With a firm commitment to customer success, iRestore strives to deliver robust systems and exceptional support to restoration businesses worldwide. To learn more about iRestore, visit https:// irestore.io/.
iRestore is a CRM and job management software program developed by a former restoration professional and computer programmer for restoration industry professionals.
About DryLINK DryLINK is the only completely automated jobsite data collection tool with remote monitoring capabilities, live drying reports, and asset management for the water mitigation market. The drying report can be shared with stakeholders for up-to-date jobsite information.
About Phoenix Restoration Equipment Phoenix is a leading supplier of innovative equipment and technology solutions for water mitigation professionals. Phoenix launched the first LGR dehumidifier, the Phoenix 200, in 1994 and continues to lead the restoration industry forward with innovations like DryLINK. Phoenix is a brand of Therma-Stor LLC, a company dedicated to innovation in the indoor air quality and water damage restoration industries. To learn more about Phoenix Restoration Equipment, visit www.usephoenix.com.
Photo credit: eyfoto / iStock / Getty Images Plus via Getty Images
May 8, 2023
For nearly 23 years in the industry, I have been making lists. All kinds of lists: supply lists, task lists, inspection lists, to-do lists, lists of lists that need to be made. After all these years, I am still making lists but with new eyes, knowledge, skills, and inspiration.
Over the years, I had moments of frustration and thought, “no more lists!” I have had a few rants: “Do not make another list because I probably already made it!” I have pondered the use of lists after they were made. Some of the lists fall into the category of “they don’t work if we don’t use it.”
If you are in this industry, you likely use a list, made a list, planned to make a list, or want a list. You may have experienced some list frustration. Where does our list passion come from? I have had the opportunity to have some great collaborative conversations with some of my restoration friends, and during one conversation I was referred to the book, The Checklist Manifesto, How to Get things Right, Autl Gawande. The following book review gave me goosebumps: “An electrifying manifesto that pairs the most advanced medical science with the humblest of tools: the checklist….” Donna Seaman, Booklist. The title alone tells us where our list passion is found, “How to Get things Right.” Summary: “…Atul Gawande makes a compelling argument that we can do better, using the simplest of methods: the checklist….how they could bring about striking improvements in a variety of fields, from medicine and disaster recovery to professions and businesses of all kinds…”
Lists are widely adopted tools in many sectors and well-developed, accessible lists can be valuable job aids that help our teams succeed and improve our operational outcomes. I am always inspired by my military veteran restoration friends. Not only is their service to our country an inspiration but also the experiences, ideas and strategies from their military background being applied to restoration operations.
I asked a process-driven military veteran and restoration business owner who I admire to share his thoughts on lists. Chris Sanford, MBA, Navy Veteran Business Owner, PuroClean Disaster Restoration Services:
“I believe lists are critical to help prioritize and maximize what one can accomplish in a defined period of time. For more than 23 years in the Navy while on active duty and now in the reserves, I have kept a “wheel book,” aka notebook, by my side or on my person and each one is filled with a list of tasks for each day. I’ve broken pages up into tasks for me, emails to write, calls to make, and tasks to assign. I also use different color pens to differentiate normal vs urgent tasks. I’ve tried different digital solutions, but haven’t been able to switch over completely. Bottom line: every successful officer I have met in the military uses lists extensively to ensure nothing slips through the cracks. I also appreciate a good checklist, which is a specific type of list that can be a template used to perform a routine task without missing a step over and over, or a one-time-use checklist for a specific event or project. If you are really into lists for larger events and projects, Google “Plan of Action and Milestones (POAM),” it’s a list on steroids. . .the military loves lists! I have incorporated this into my business and encourage our staff to use both task lists, reminder lists, and checklists each and every day.”
If you have struggled to make lists to serve as job aids, you are not alone. As you read The Checklist Manifesto, you will gain valuable insight and knowledge regarding the use of lists, the expertise, and the development process. Today, I collaborate with our teams to make job aids to use in our own operations, as training tools, and for the restorers we serve. Below is a glimpse of the variety of efforts which also resulted in our internal joke of making things simple is not so simple.
Textile Sorting Chart: Took about two weeks and many iterations. After testing it, it needed to be adjusted several times.
Water Truck Inventory List: 97 items, only basic items, 3 months of perfecting the list and formatting for practical use and implementation.
Basic Water Loss – Day 1 Simple Steps: Not simple to make simple steps. Approximately 3 months, many iterations, and resulted in 17 Simple Steps, with some reminder bullets.
Why is it so hard? It is a discipline with a series of best practices. This is important because the reality is all job aids, lists, are not created equally. I dug into the archives and as a young restoration company operator, I found my documents that were meant to be job aids were wordy documents that ranged from 300- to 1,000-word, single spaced, documents. This was the source of the problem. This was not an effective approach to giving the tools to the team that I was trying to create. They would be fine in a comprehensive manual but not serve as job aids. Here are a few tips (checklist) to help you develop and/or implement lists as job aids.
Simple: Be extremely concise. It is not a replacement for training and experience. I can attest that this is a very difficult element to conquer.
Format and Approach: There are a variety of approaches from a simple checklist to a flow chart. Example: How to Train Someone is an 8-Step Flow Chart
Design: The graphic design, font, colors, and imagery should all be considered.
Test: Test your list/job aid. Your first iteration may have missed something. This is part of the development process.
Incorporate the use of the lists and company expectations in your training and development initiatives.
Accessibility: The team must have access to the lists & job aides. It may be digital, attached to assignments, paper hanging in the warehouse, truck, or placed strategically like putting a PPE Bag Inventory List on the bag itself.
Why does Santa check his list twice? If we consider the practice of checking the list twice, we could speculate that there is a drive towards excellence and a desire to deliver legendary service. The list needs to be accurate and thorough; the list allows him to honor his commitments efficiently, and list is what is used to make sure that nobody is disappointed; so, he checks it twice.
Mistakes happen! Sometimes things go wrong and it’s not even human error, it just happens. When something goes wrong and we apply root cause problem solving which unveils that if we had checked our work, we could have avoided the issue, perhaps, there is a simple solution. Can problems be reduced with a little checking? Yes!
As a casual observation, when work habits include self-checking and processes that account for double checking things, the result is fewer errors, mistakes, and problems. As an ability, we may call it conscientiousness. Considering that errors, mistakes, and problems can have a ripple of disastrous consequences in our restoration organizations; it is deserving of some attention.
Have you ever wondered how someone gave you a message with the wrong phone number? It is likely because the number was not read back to the person who gave it to them. This is an example of a very basic self-check that everyone should be trained to do in the organization. When someone gives an email and/or phone number, you always read it back to them to make sure you recorded the very important contact information perfectly. Being just one number off can make the difference between your ability to respond to a loss and/or honor the commitment to call a person back or not. It’s a big deal and can be proactively managed by the work habit to double check.
As I walked into work one morning, I complimented a coworker on the speed and quality he executed in the reconstruction of a bathroom that experienced a water loss. He thanked me and qualified his response by explaining that he needed to go back that morning. He explained that the tank of the toilet leaked, and it needed a few parts. He had removed and reset the toilet. Since I had been pondering about an individual’s work habits and the ability to self-check work, as well as the supporting processes in the organization, I began to question him.
“How did you know the toilet was not working properly?”
“I flushed it to make sure it was working after I re-installed it.”, he responded.
“Why did you do that?”
As he looked at me with some dismay at my line of questioning, I answered for him, “Because you always check your work!?”
As I pondered, in over five years, I could not recall a defect or workmanship issue regarding the work of this individual.
I don’t know if he was specifically taught these work practices, if it is innate to him, or if he learned from mistakes; but I do know that I thought, what if everyone did that?
Equipment: Equipment would never be left behind. Even with the application of the software that tells you a piece of equipment is left on-site, if the person who installed it failed to scan it to the site, it can be left behind. A quick walk-through in the spirit of double-checking that all equipment is pulled can eliminate the call, “You left an air mover here.”
Repairs: Some trades lend themselves to easy checks. Install a faucet? Check that it works properly and is not leaking by turning it on. Some trades require the detailed eye of a craftsman: is the drywall paint ready?
The examples of problems that can be reduced by checking are endless as are the potential solutions. It applies to everything from field execution to office, administration, marketing, accounting, etc. Here is a brief list to get started on helping our organizations and teams to improve with a little checking:
Organizational processes can support and contribute to checking in the spirit of reducing errors. A simple example is a co-worker double checking, inspecting (and signing off as “inspected”) contents before they get packaged for storage and/or returned to the customer.
Reconciliation is a concept that is often associated with accounting functions. A bank reconciliation is a check and balance that everything that is recorded in the accounting system is in perfect alignment with the bank system. Any discrepancy is identified and corrected. Reconciliation as a process can be applied to many areas within your company. As a simple example:
10 water losses to be monitored
10 monitorings are scheduled 10 readings/maps get submitted at day end
0 Steps were missed
Culture and Training always have a global impact in our operations and outcomes. We can incorporate checks (self-regulation) into the training of skills and tasks within the organization. Culturally, we should celebrate and hold people accountable to their level of conscientiousness in the performance of their work and be prepared to coach and develop them on improvements.
A little time in double-checking can have exponential value in time wasted and service-related issues.
To get the most out of your iRestore reporting system and features, it is critical to collect thorough and accurate information at the onset of the job. We have designed a Referral Chart Reference guide that can be adjusted to track based on your company’s needs. Check it out below:
Tips on how to use your Referral Chart Reference Guide:
1. Train your team to collect the right information with the use of the chart.
a. Consistency is key.
b. Ask the right questions of your customer at the right time.
2. Utilize the reporting features to constantly evaluate the results and sources of your revenues.
a. Share reports with the appropriate team members.
b. Have a routine meeting schedule. For example, evaluate key reports once a week.