Intratem works with construction firms to ensure they are using the best mobile technology, while lowering costs, saving time, and keeping their systems secure.
By Staci Davidson, Senior Editor at Knighthouse Media
Budgets are tight, and qualified labor is often in short supply. Contractors need to make the best use of the money, time and people they have. And as the construction industry becomes more mobile and relies more on technology, firms need to be sure they are not wasting time, money or labor resources in unnecessary ways. Intratem is one partner that can help ensure contractors stay focused on their core competencies, while making best use of their resources.
Based in Los Angeles, Intratem helps clients with mobility lifecycle management, working to ensure their future technological success. The company helps contractors and clients in other industries develop mobile strategies for their specific businesses, reduce mobile costs, free up clients’ internal IT departments, ensure clients’ mobile security and create more transparency in mobile reporting. Founded in 2004, Intratem has helped clients save millions in mobile expenses and reduces wireless expenses by 25 percent on average.
“We’ve seen construction companies use technology for basic tasks, like payroll, for many years, but now they are utilizing tablets and smartphones more and more to manage things like payroll and estimates, create purchase orders, take photos of receipts, job sites and keep everything centralized,” says Alex Dukhovny, director of business development. “They might use IoT devices or telemetry for different mandates from the DOT or somewhere else, and that gets them to start thinking about how to use technology in other areas.
“Maybe they already have all this and are either underutilizing the resources or not using them correctly to their full potential, or they aren’t on the right wireless plan for their business, so they are overpaying,” he explains. “Or maybe they don’t have the support with all of the technology they have because their IT staff hasn’t increased. We come in to help them. The other scenario we see is that they have a basic system and they want to use this advanced technology. We set them up and help them do it correctly.”
CEO and co-founder Dimitry Malinsky explains there are more advancements in the near future, offering more benefits to contractors. “We anticipate that in the very near future the wide availability of 5G connectivity will open up mass adoption VR and AR to its full capacity to be used massively in the construction industry,” he says. “According to OSHA, 6.5 million people are working on construction sites every day, so adoption of VR and AR into training, remote collaboration and worker assistance, as well as virtual plan reviews and other applications of VR and AR will do wonders to workplace productivity in the construction industry in the very next few years.”
Intratem is focused on helping contractors effectively execute their work while saving money on mobile devices, and while those are goals it has for every client, it does not approach work with clients in the same way. Dukhovny explains a company may have technicians in the field who are handymen, and they could use clamshell phones with basic photo capabilities and do well. Other contractors may need smart technology, more connections and the ability to use a phone as a hotspot so people on site with laptop can connect to the internet.
“It all depends on their business use, and we align our services to meet their needs,” he says. “We look at everything they are looking to do or how they are looking to grow and where they have gaps. One company had a ridiculous number of steps they had to take before they could pay a carrier invoice, and so we streamlined that for them.”
Intratem employs experts in different fields – security, new technology, plans and analytics, or reporting, for example – and because everyone brings something different to the table, the company can offer clients comprehensive services. For clients who need help with their day-to-day operations or a supplement to their own IT departments, Intratem offers an entire help desk. Clients have a dedicated account rep as part of the help desk, but anyone who answers the phone can help them if they have an issue.
“We do not offer a cookie-cutter system, and the way that we are able to understand the needs of our clients really sets us apart,” Dukhovny says. “We try to understand where the needs are, what they are struggling with and then tailor our solution to help them succeed.”
Safe and Secure
The majority of Intratem’s clients are concerned about security with their mobile strategy, so it takes a comprehensive approach to that. Intratem starts by identifying with clients what is important to them and what are the levels of security that they need. Dukhovny notes it might be fine if the company’s contacts are listed on devices – depends on the company, but emails are more sensitive, and some websites may need to be whitelisted. The next step is to purchase devices and decide who in the company gets different authorizations.
Intratem works with clients to write a mobile security policy and then create a culture where the policy will be embraced. The next step is to deal with policy enforcement. The company partners with software providers and identifies the best enforcement software for each particular client.
“We take on the responsibility of overseeing, reporting, analytics, and enforcement,” Dukhovny says. “Things like a lost phone versus a broken phone, or an employee getting fired versus an employee leaving. We look at how salespeople are allowed to leave – can they take their accounts with them? Is that easy for them to do on a device? Who owns the phone number of that device? It’s a fine balance to make the end-user experience comfortable while maintaining security.”
As Intratem grows, it plans to expand its help desk, because that is a huge value for clients. It also plans to invest in further educating its employees to ensure they are up to speed on all of the technology advancements and forecasts.
“We offer great services, and we plan to increase those capabilities to cover more and more clients,” Dukhovny says. “On calls with clients, I ask so many questions it’s kind of crazy. It’s the only way I can help them – I want to under-promise and over-deliver.”