Case Study

Subcontractor Empirica Infrastructure Ltd. Finds the Right Fit with Procore

The Challenge

With important projects ready to begin and too much time being lost to managing documentation, Empirica Infrastructure Ltd. needed to improve how they shared information with general contractors. The subcontractor wanted a complete solution they could implement quickly and scale as the company grew.

The Solution

Members of the team were familiar with how general contractors leverage Procore, and saw how the platform could support a subcontractor’s workflow. Empirica Infrastructure chose Procore’s construction management platform for its ability to track chains of communication and standardize time sheets, change orders and budget documentation.

After deferring the decision to invest in a solution during the uncertain first year of the pandemic, the company decided to make the leap in 2021. Implementation took place during the company’s busiest season, but the process was fast and smooth with Procore’s attentive support and Empirica Infrastructure’s enthusiasm to learn the tools. Unlike some larger companies, Empirica Infrastructure intended to train its whole team at once during the rollout, rather than beginning with just a smaller implementation group. Procore’s various training tools helped ensure this approach was successful.

The Results

“Some subcontractors feel they’re too small to implement Procore, but when growth happens, you want to have that base so you’re ready. The platform has optimized our current processes and we know it will handle everything we do in the future.”

Paula Galvez

Project Coordinator
Bridge under construction

Embracing Change in an Uncertain Time

Founded in 2008, Empirica Infrastructure specializes in sustainable infrastructure and tenant improvement projects in western Canada, including civil works, structural works and utilities.

They were contemplating a transition to a construction management platform, but took a pause when the pandemic began. It seemed like the wrong time to add another variable to an unpredictable situation. But a year later, with the pandemic ongoing and the company busy and thriving, Empirica Infrastructure realized the unprecedented scenario only underlined the need to improve its communication and documentation processes.

"COVID helped us realize how we have to optimize our time," says Paula Galvez, Project Coordinator, Empirica Infrastructure.

Contractors reviewing the completion of a bridge

Moving Forward Together

As a small team, the company wanted everyone to be involved in training sessions from the get-go so that imminent projects could benefit from Procore. "We knew we wanted to get it implemented as quickly as possible," says Galvez. "The process has been pretty seamless. I don’t think I’ve ever been offered so much implementation help from a company." She says that rather than questioning the change, team members engaged with the implementation process and asked lots of questions.

Sunset seen from a bridge

A Subcontractor’s Workflow Goes Digital

Working with different general contractors, the company found it often needed to update document templates manually, which was time-consuming. Procore’s ability to output standardized PDFs has allowed the team to use fewer programs to create documents and spend time on higher-value tasks.

It helps that most of the general contractors Empirica Infrastructure works with are Procore users themselves and familiar with the platform. In cases where they’re not, the company’s own Procore account ensures that documentation is standardized.

Tracking communication with general contractors on Procore has enabled the company to present evidence of change orders in a written record. "It’s not verbal anymore," says Galvez. "Procore helps us track it all."

She believes Procore’s features make it easier for subcontractors to manage tasks they do often. "There are tools that subcontractors will use more than a general contractor. For example, we use timesheets and invoicing in an elaborate way. We’re able to manage this all more efficiently, and our budgeting is all going through Procore."

Road under construction

Preparing For Growth

The team anticipates further improvement on their processes with Procore, including their internal communication as staff become more familiar with features and tools.

They also see Procore as a way to strengthen the company as it encounters new challenges and continues to flourish. Empirica Infrastructure won’t need to change platforms as they grow, because Procore can scale with it.

"Some subcontractors feel they’re too small to implement Procore, but when growth happens, you want to have that base so you’re ready," says Galvez. "The platform has optimized our current processes and we know it will handle everything we do in the future. I think Empirica is a great example of how a subcontractor can use Procore and can easily implement it even when it’s the busiest time of the year."

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