As part of an effort to get lean and mean in today's competitive market, concrete producers are relying on computer systems and intelligent devices to streamline their processes. Powerful operations management tools help create back-office efficiencies in project management, payroll, and accounting, while dispatch and batch plant controls keep deliveries and production running like clockwork. Investing in the right technology to ease your pain points can add crucial dollars to the bottom line.

Enhanced moisture sensor setup

RadarTron and MixTron microwave moisture sensors for aggregate bins and mixers have an upgraded user interface for easy setup and calibration. Sensors can be connected by a single port or multidrop cable to a USB computer adaptor. The software then searches for all sensors on the line and reports all moisture and temperature readings. Each sensor is configured and calibrated through a single-screen menu. Scale-Tron Industries Ltd. 800-632-7083.

Manage project details and costs

ProContractorMX provides control of business operations—from takeoff and estimating through job cost accounting, and ultimately for critical reporting and analysis. The solution handles complex details of the entire project life cycle, helping producers identify and prevent financial loss, manage productivity, spot discrepancies and errors, and manage projects with accurate, real-time information. Maxwell Systems. 800-688-8226.

Automate processes

Prolog software streamlines construction project control by automating day-to-day tasks and processes, reducing paperwork, offering real-time cost management and budget tracking, and managing all construction projects. By automating processes and integrating data, the program reduces construction project risk, controlling project costs, and providing complete transparency to project stakeholders. Meridian Systems Inc. 800-850-2660.

Platform for multiple locations

Data-driven decision making and integration software allows producers to remotely establish communication between plants without replacing their existing batch control, dispatch, quality control, truck tracking, and fleet maintenance systems. The company's web-based, real-time reporting and analytics software compiles transparent, accurate information across all operations. iCrete. 310-499-5450.

Track crews on the go

PocketClock/GPS mobile time tracking software monitors crews, jobsites, and job activities from one device. Workers touch green to clock in and red to clock out. GPS stamps validate their location each time. Supervisors can wirelessly send records back to the office from remote locations. The software runs on iPhone, Android, BlackBerry, and Windows Mobile. ExakTime Innovations Inc. 877-411-2923.

Central dispatch software

Access Unlimited dispatch software improves efficiency and productivity in concrete and aggregate operations with Microsoft-based tools that operate over the producer's network, GPS, and mobile phones. Features include driver scheduling, order management, truck tracking tools, executive reporting and business intelligence, and sales and accounting tools. Jonel Engineering. 800-432-4567.

Monitor concrete deliveries

The company's enhanced process control platform measures and manages concrete as it travels from plant to jobsite. The modular hardware system can be customized to meet producers' needs for onboard concrete mixing controls. Upcoming modules will include the ability to automatically measure concrete temperature, add dispersants to the mix, and determine high-speed slump mixing. Verifi LLC. 513-874-3222.

Track regulatory compliance

The web-based Compliance Safety Manager, formerly known as WorkHorse II, helps producers keep up with regulatory mandates from OSHA, EPA, DOT, MSHA, and other agencies. The software organizes data, manages compliance schedules, and reports preventive maintenance issues, reducing the potential for fines and risk. Employers can also manage individual employee requirements and training programs. Craig Safety Technologies. 888-257-0124.

Calculate job costs at low cost

CheckMate Job Data is designed to track labor and materials for small- and mid-sized producers. The software reports hours spent on a job by tasks, employees, and departments. Employees scan bar-coded badges for each job, and the Time and Attendance module compiles labor hours for payroll. Production managers can forecast end dates and identify bottlenecks by tracking the manufacturing process. Dynamic Systems Inc. 800-342-3999.

Web-based bin monitoring

The BinView machine-to-machine inventory management system combines SmartBob level sensors and Sprint wireless technology to monitor inventory in bins, tanks, and silos via the Internet. The interface works outside the company network, so data can be accessed anywhere, anytime. Users create customized dashboards to monitor specific locations or bins, and receive automated level alerts. BinMaster. 800-278-4241.

Battery-powered equipment tracker

The AT-1400 uses GPS technology to report location and movement for field assets like trailers, generators, and heavy-duty equipment. Fleet managers using the company's online application can view assets equipped with AT-1400 on maps alongside vehicles in their fleet. The unit is built for extreme weather conditions and includes a 30-year warranty. Networkfleet Inc. 866-227-7323.

Dispatch software reduces errors

In-Line dispatch software is an affordable solution for small- and medium-sized operations. Personnel can seamlessly coordinate orders, delivery schedules, projects, truck tracking, and reports through a central server. Ticket data can be exported to an accounting system for prompt invoicing. In-Line eliminates duplication, reduces mistakes, and facilitates decision-making based on real-time data. MPAQ Automation Inc. 888-672-0349.

Improve dispatch services

Dispatch optimization products COMMANDoptimize and INTE-GRAoptimize help improve service and truck use by determining the best way to schedule the day's deliveries and updating the dispatch plan according to changing conditions. Customize program settings to address specific objectives, such as cost savings, on-time delivery, or vehicle use. Command Alkon. 800-624-1872.

Precast batch control system

The Century NX system batch plant control system is ideal for upgrading precast batch plants to manufacture standard pre-cast or SCC. Features include a touch-screen user interface, flexible recipe-based sequencing, and panel-mounted digital scale indicators for easy calibration. The system can run unattended with batch calls from the plant floor or mobile concrete delivery systems. Columbia Machine Inc. 800-628-4065.

Paperless project management

With PDF Revu 9 software, users can create, markup, view, process, manage, and share PDF files. Its 3-D viewing feature can rotate, spin, and zoom for easy navigation through complex models on the screen. Calculate project costs with measurement tools such as a markup list and custom columns, and convert PDF files back to their original MS Office file formats. Bluebeam Software. 866-496-2140.

Track rebar inventory

A complete software package for fabricating and placing rebar includes field-placing, billing, cash receipts, backlog forecasting, building products, job costing, and inventory/purchasing. The program interfaces with other rebar detailing software, rebar equipment, and almost any accounting package. Soule Software. 818-303-1364.

Eco-efficiency analysis

The Eco-Efficiency Analysis (EEA) program examines the environmental life cycle of concrete mixes, from raw material extraction to production. A report measures the environmental impact of each concrete mix, including energy consumption, emissions, toxicity potential, risk potential, consumption of raw materials, and land use. BASF Construction Chemicals. 800-628-9990.

Construction payroll service

Web-based offers payroll services tailored to the construction industry. Payroll processing services include checks and direct deposit, tax filings, and year-end W2s for multiple locations. The software offers certified construction reporting for EEO/minority compliance, workers' compensation, new hire, job hour and job labor variance, and union requirements. Foundation Construction Payroll Service. 800-949-9620.