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#190862 - 12/08/09 08:20 PM Value add
gfretwell Offline

Member

Registered: 07/20/04
Posts: 9012
Loc: Estero,Fl,usa
I was thinking about this and I wonder, how good are your records of old jobs? These days with computer storage as cheap as it is, you might be able to claim a value added service for repeat customers because you can still come up with details of their old jobs with you. Things like good diagrams of what you did, things you had to explore/document and even pictures for things like buried circuits and such before you backfill. If you have good sight lines in a photo, referencing things that are unlikely to change, you can get very close to a buried line without ever turning a blade of grass.
Some other guy bidding your job is immediately at a disadvantage. Most customers would have lost this information, even if you gave it to them.
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Greg Fretwell

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Business, Office, Estimating, Legal:
#190865 - 12/08/09 11:36 PM Re: Value add [Re: gfretwell]
Tesla Offline
Member

Registered: 06/16/04
Posts: 1280
Loc: Sacramento, CA
Ultra-documentation of installed work is the new normal.

You're seeing it in life-safety systems, first.

Just another reason why I use an iPhone and lift my photos up into the 'cloud.'
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Tesla

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#190873 - 12/09/09 05:33 PM Re: Value add [Re: Tesla]
HotLine1 Offline

Member

Registered: 04/03/02
Posts: 6786
Loc: Brick, NJ USA
Greg:
With my EC hat on, documentation was a 'norm' for 25 years. "As-built" red line prints, dimensions from immovable objects for U/G work, & daily/weekly notes.

The digital age made life a lot easier!

File back-ups, first on 5-1/4 disc, then 3-1/2 then tape, wow that was cool. Progress on to CD's, DVD's, flash drives & back-up hard drives....then put down the tools.

I handed over a lot of documentation to the guy that bought the trucks, tools & materials, along with the client list. Invoices going back to 1980 (digital) are still in my possesion, along with insurance policies, etc.

As an AHJ....documentation as required is SOP & CYA.
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John

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#190877 - 12/09/09 05:51 PM Re: Value add [Re: HotLine1]
gfretwell Offline

Member

Registered: 07/20/04
Posts: 9012
Loc: Estero,Fl,usa
I still have every inspection request and the resulting inspection report for the 8 years I had the job (alomg with my invoices, expense vouchers and the state appropriations letter for each project).
It was all on my computer and got backed up many times on different media.
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Greg Fretwell

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#190880 - 12/09/09 06:38 PM Re: Value add [Re: gfretwell]
HotLine1 Offline

Member

Registered: 04/03/02
Posts: 6786
Loc: Brick, NJ USA
Greg:
I wonder how many guys store their backups in the 'clouds'??
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John

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#190891 - 12/09/09 07:29 PM Re: Value add [Re: HotLine1]
gfretwell Offline

Member

Registered: 07/20/04
Posts: 9012
Loc: Estero,Fl,usa
"Clouds"?

I just have lots of old hard drives and CDs. I am trying to get out of the tape and diskette business.
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Greg Fretwell

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#190913 - 12/10/09 03:37 PM Re: Value add [Re: gfretwell]
LarryC Offline
Member

Registered: 07/05/04
Posts: 775
Loc: Winchester, NH, US
I am still concerned about the rapid pace of media format change. Almost anything kept on 5 1/4" floppys are probably unreadable now a days. CD's and DVD's are rapidly heading down the same path.

In my lifetime (40+ years) paper seems to be the only thing readable after 25 years, ASSUMING it can be found more or less intact. Film can still be read after 80+ years but it is usually not tolerant of getting wet.

Larry C

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#190916 - 12/10/09 06:40 PM Re: Value add [Re: LarryC]
HotLine1 Offline

Member

Registered: 04/03/02
Posts: 6786
Loc: Brick, NJ USA
I transferred data on the 5-1/4's to 3-1/2's, then to tapes. Tape drive is still floating around, but the tapes were transferred to data CD's.

"clouds" is a term I hear from some IT type guys for data storage at an unknown server (fee based, and done via wireless devices; hence 'clouds' somewhere up in the sky.
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John

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#190917 - 12/10/09 06:47 PM Re: Value add [Re: LarryC]
gfretwell Offline

Member

Registered: 07/20/04
Posts: 9012
Loc: Estero,Fl,usa
I was keeping a machine with just about every possible media for a while but I have moved on. Probably the most obscure drive I had was the IBM 3363 optical drive. I had 6 kinds of tape hanging on a SCSI bus and both 3.5 and 5.26 diskette sizes in all 7 densities (no 8").
These days I am down to CD/DVD in various flavors.
_________________________
Greg Fretwell

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#191546 - 01/01/10 05:58 PM Re: Value add [Re: gfretwell]
RH1 Offline
Member

Registered: 08/18/09
Posts: 22
Loc: California
For automatic file storage in "the cloud" and synchronization between computers I recommend Dropbox, it's free and extremely useful. You get 2GB of free storage.

Disclosure: If you use the link I posted to sign up, I receive (and so do you) an additional 250 Mb free storage. grin
.
.

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