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MacAllister Machinery Moves From Paper to Mobile Solution

MacAllister Machinery
Matt Hamilton IT Trainer/Project Manager, MacAllister Machinery- Photography by AJ Mast

While some customers pick up rental equipment or arrange for their own transportation, most have MacAllister deliver it to their job sites. Unfortunately, with early morning drop-offs, sometimes no one is available to sign associated contracts and confirm machine conditions.

Before going mobile, MacAllister followed up on drop-offs with a redundant, expensive proposition of sending someone to the site for a customer’s signature, or faxing or emailing contracts to customers—an equally time-consuming process.

“Both the contract and condition report, from a liability standpoint, are important. We need them signed as soon as possible,” Hamilton explains. “Additionally, this was painful for our customers, who had to print the document out, sign and scan it, and send it back to us. This was unfortunate because we always try to put our customers first.”

Storing the documents to ensure their traceability was another issue. Rental offices put them in filing cabinets, so MacAllister headquarters had no central access. If an executive wanted to review documents from disparate locations, someone would contact multiple offices to scan or fax each document.

“We had no electronic input at all,” Hamilton recalls. “Everything was done on paper. Someone would have to go through filing cabinets to find historical information. Everything was cumbersome from a managerial standpoint.”

A Tailored Solution

Realizing this was also an expensive way to run its business, MacAllister investigated how it could improve its contracts and condition report processes. It evaluated several options for capturing signatures electronically but found them lacking in how they’d fit into the company’s business flow, including over-the-air transmittal of data to the company’s primary data center.

MacAllister partnered with ICS, as it was already familiar with the company and its FormSprint tool. This allowed MacAllister to have more control of how the tool would benefit both the business and its customers. “We knew we could have a solution tailored to our exact requirements, which made it extremely appealing to us,” Hamilton adds.

A beta version was piloted at two locations for six months, resulting in subsequent improvements. The mobile solution has since been rolled out to additional locations.

Jim Utsler, IBM Systems Magazine senior writer, has been covering the technology field for more than a decade. Jim can be reached at jjutsler@provide.net.

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