Field time collection is one of the significant challenges for companies today. Many states have new rules; field employees have personal equipment, not company-provided; accuracy as to the right job, cost code, time worked for each person on the project. Capturing unique needs such as time spent in respirator equipment and many other peoplerelated reporting needs that are part of running a construction project. This happens every week across all the jobs, then back to the office to be processed for payroll. Technology has brought significant time savings, not to mention accuracy and a great audit trail. Combining this with their accounting project management software as a complete integration means even more time savings. Syscon’s F.I.T. System works on iOS and Android phones, tablets, and even a browser. Changes made at the office are immediately available to the field. Keeping the field screen information clean and simple is critical. The review and approval process is very streamlined, so the payroll admin has all they need to process the payroll with the click of a button.
When thinking about Construction and IT – Syscon is the expert. Armed with industry knowledge, and experience the company offers revolutionary IT services. In addition to the network, hosting, and local computer needs, they leverage the Azure cloud, Microsoft 365 tools, and their custom programs for field time collection and data analysis. Their vendor relationships include HP, Microsoft CSP, Sage, Sonicwall, and their custom tools and reporting include Over/Under billing, Cost to Complete, Field Integrated Time collection, Indirect Cost allocation, and dozens of custom reports.
Whether working at a client’s site or through their Remote and Managed Services options, Syscon staff is available to provide technology solutions appropriate to a company’s needs and goals. When a client has an on-premise network, their IT needs are pretty specific. Local equipment needs maintenance; hardware has a life cycle and may need to be replaced; if the staff needs remote access, the server requires additional security and needs to be locked down; the firewall needs to be kept up-to-date with the latest firmware. Then there are licensing compliance needs, backup and disaster recovery, upgrades for business-specific software, and the list goes on. “We keep track of the maintenance schedule; confirm our clients’ backups every day; review Microsoft security updates and push them out to our clients’ endpoints; track firewall service renewals and provide quotes to renew; and much more,” says Catherine Wendt, Co-Founder & President of Syscon. “Many user issues, and even some of the maintenance can be done remotely; it’s truly amazing. This reduces windshield-time, making our techs more efficient, with more time doing what they love – IT. This cuts down on lost work time for our clients because we can dig into the problem right away. Using our remote access tools, we can do everything from setting up a new computer to troubleshooting individual user issues. There are many tasks that can be scheduled for off-hours, further reducing work interruptions.”
WHETHER WORKING AT A CLIENT’S SITE OR
THROUGH THEIR REMOTE AND MANAGED SERVICES
OPTIONS, SYSCON STAFF IS AVAILABLE TO
PROVIDE TECHNOLOGY SOLUTIONS APPROPRIATE
TO A COMPANY’S NEEDS AND GOALS
WHETHER WORKING AT A CLIENT’S SITE OR THROUGH THEIR REMOTE AND MANAGED SERVICES OPTIONS, SYSCON STAFF IS AVAILABLE TO PROVIDE TECHNOLOGY SOLUTIONS APPROPRIATE TO A COMPANY’S NEEDS AND GOALS
The company’s anti-virus service provides the most up-to-date protection available against viruses that could cause severe damage to clients’ computers and business data. As a service, it automatically updates to the latest version, reducing the risk and interruption to the end-user. “Having said that, it’s been a race with the bad guys; as soon as they exploit something, the software is updated and pushed to everyone, but it’s a no-win game,” adds Catherine. “We recently selected a product through our same RMM tool called Endpoint Detection and Response (EDR).” This solution takes advantage of the historical definition files. Still, it takes it much further by incorporating Artificial Intelligence (AI) to stay on top of new threats and monitor processes all the time, not just when a scan is run. This is the new wave of anti-virus, specifically to address the cat-and-mouse game.
“We took on a new contractor client in MA two days after they transitioned from an on premise server to cloud hosting. Just as we were wrapping up the move to our cloud hosting for their server, a destructive, file locking virus was accidentally released by an accounting person who opened an email from one of their well-known vendors,” explains Catherine. “Nobody in the office could perform accounting, bidding, sales, safety, or scheduling operations. Once we had control of the server in our environment, we were able to get in front of the attack and keep their accounting department working and their internal systems running separately from the infected files. We were able to eliminate the virus and clean their data – no ransom needed to be paid and no critical data was lost.”
According to Catherine, many businesses face aging hardware and end-of-life software; replace or move to the cloud? The Azure architecture is an excellent location for business software that needs to run on a server operating system, for instance, accounting and project management software, industry-specific tools, and similar. The security and speeds just can’t be beaten when compared to data centers. These platforms are also optimized to work with SharePoint and OneDrive, something that just wasn’t smooth and convenient only a few years ago; so much has changed. Adding session hosts to load balance users, and the user experience is better than ever. This also allows for faster recovery if a profile becomes corrupt – blow away the session host and redeploy with no interruption to the actual server. Alongside, SharePoint and OneDrive are optimized with this platform and are truly ready for prime time. “Add in the Teams integrations and users have great flexibility to access data, share, and collaborate,” says Catherine. “So why are we different? We have automated and standardized the deployment of the Azure-specific components. This saves time when deploying, and minimizes mis-configurations. When it comes to SharePoint deployment, we’ve been called in numerous times because a company has been brought to their knees during a migration due to poor planning, poor structural changes, and a misunderstanding of the process. We have flexibility to meet the client’s needs with knowledge of how to deploy successfully for all parties.”
As time collection needs and state compliance become more burdensome, Syscon anticipates growth across the U.S. for their field time collection software, F.I.T. System, which integrates with Sage 100 Contractor, the construction-specific accounting software. “Most construction workers have cell phones these days, and the historical process of calling in time, taking pictures of a hand-written time card with a cell phone, or finding a fax machine in a construction trailer just doesn’t cut it. Whether it’s illegible information or wrong jobs, the need to verify the person is really at the job site working, or compliance with state mandates, construction companies are going to need to move off paper timesheets,” explains Catherine. “The next thing they’ll run into is the frustration if clunky connections with their accounting software. Since we know the field’s needs as well as the payroll and owner’s, we can leverage solutions that are fully integrated, saving time and headaches for each role in the payroll process.”