Interview with Dave Hurley: The Secrets to Productivity and Profitability

An Interview with Dave Hurley on the Secrets to Productivity and Profitability

Dave Hurley has served in Executive roles with several leading contractors including Buckner Companies, The Hurley Group, DH Griffin Construction, and The Walsh Group. His team has worked on large high profile projects ranging from $20M to $400M. With over 30 years of construction experience, Dave is adept in proposal development, estimating, preconstruction, project management and field operations.

Dave implemented eSUB in his companies to organize bigger project, save documentation, and improve field productivity. An eSUB user for many years, Dave participated in a webinar with our Director of Account Management Justin Wetherby to share the secrets of productivity and profitability in construction.

What did you like about eSUB when you used it?

The reason I liked eSUB so much when I used it is that the daily report gives you insight to the field and what’s going on, what’s not going on, changes, and delays. Also if you use the daily report as a time function, then it gives you a lot of insight of how you’re doing. If there’s anything within eSUB for my money, it’s the daily report that generates whether you’re gonna make money or lose money on a job.

Some of the things that it tracks is the labor and equipment. Those are the hardest activities to control on a job site and just so happen to be the most expensive. Managing both of those effectively, by watching the man-hours, the cost of equipment, it allows you to make good decisions. So if you’re waiting at the end of the month to try to figure out what your cost is, you’re letting history go by you because you can’t change history. I’ll always say that you have to be proactive and active in a project to make it successful so the daily log to me is like your window into the daily workings of the field.

Why should everyone try to implement daily reporting?

It’s a great thing to do. On the daily report, you have comments and internal comments. You can snap off the internal comments and send them that daily report. If you have delay number one is this, delay number 2 is this, and you try getting updated drawings to build this section, continue to fill that in and never get rid of that stuff until each one of those things are done.

The nice thing about the daily logs in eSUB is that you can copy yesterday’s daily log and make it today’s and either erase or add thanks to it to make it simpler instead of trying to write all that stuff out again. Getting that emailed off every day is great because you’re actually notifying them, per your contract agreement that within 48 hours you’re going to tell them about a problem. They’re also going to be a little bit more proactive because you’re being proactive about getting them the information and they’ll respect you for that, more than the next up that’s not doing it.

How does eSUB’s system compare to other companies?

A lot of companies have different places where information is being generated and we call those silos. You’re doing some middles in one place, RFIs on word, change orders in Excel, payroll is being performed on paper sheets or another separate software, but using eSUB, it pulls everything together in one place. The information is at your fingertips and because the modules work together, you could just be a better decision maker with all that information at your fingertips.

What are your thoughts on the email integration?

It’s a really strong feature with eSUB. As you know, everybody has Outlook. They have all their jobs, and they try to drag all their emails to each job incase they ever have to go back and reference something. Well here’s the repository where everything should be because everybody’s got 10,000 emails in their outlook box that they can’t get rid of because it’s history you never want to lose and you always want to answer the problem that may come up.

Everything goes in here, then you never have to worry about it. It’s one place that you can always look at all the emails and the emails give timeline of the job. Do the daily logs so anytime anything starts going wrong, you could always go back to these things. You create a timeline, put everything together, and show how the job went, it’s just a great history maker.

Were there any of these in particular you found your team using?

I used a lot of the letter of intent to figure out if I would sub a portion of the job out. I also always use the soft delay email. I wasn’t getting any response on the RFI so what these correspondents do is give you another level. If you send an email and you don’t get a response, you send it again. The next thing that you can do if you’re still not getting any responses is make phone calls. Then you need to go to a letter and document the date.

These things are really becoming a problem and I’m doing this work without direction. There’s just a host of things here that give you a custom, I call them Dunning letters that you can write really quick and get out the door so you don’t need to sit down for two or three hours to draft anything. You just type up a quick sentence and it becomes a letter and it goes out.

What is something everyone should take away from this?

“If there’s anything you get out of this, just remember these three things. At the end of the day, the one with the best documentation wins. eSUB collects all that together and helps you organize yourself. The information is accessible in one place so you can be more efficient and it just makes your job so much easier. Looking at things and being able to develop them, send and receive them, helps you make good decisions.

The third, which I think is the most important thing is that the field is where the money is won or lost. When it’s lost, you can’t review, you can’t rewrite history so if you know information coming from the field, you can react and you can be proactive to change the course of the job. That’s what we’re trying to do and when you have information at your fingertips, you can make good decisions.”

Secrets to Productivity Conclusion

We built eSUB Cloud to be the tech backbone of any trade subcontracting business. eSUB’s platform helps these companies organize their documents, helps keep construction projects on track and integrates with most accounting tools. To learn more, schedule a demo.