Will paper tickets like this be replaced by an electronic Smart Ticket?
Will paper tickets like this be replaced by an electronic Smart Ticket?

In Concrete Construction magazine in June and July we ran a two-part article (Part 1/Part 2) from Ken Hover describing the information contained on a concrete delivery ticket. The article focused on standard paper tickets but related to that was a healthy discussion on our website and in social media about using electronic tickets in place of paper. Jay Shilstone with Command Alkon noted that ASTM C 94 currently does not mention electronic tickets but that an effort was underway to add language that would permit it.

“A concrete delivery ticket is NOT just a receipt,” wrote Shilstone. “It provides information that can be used to determine if the material delivered is within specification limits. Many of the items [on the ticket] relate to the specification limits. Now imagine if you had a Smart Delivery Ticket that could provide an alert if the concrete exceeded the maximum allowable age or slump or air content or total water or maximum water-cementitious ratio. If you are not on the jobsite when the concrete is delivered, a Smart Ticket could be emailed to you so that you could confirm compliance with the specifications as soon as the concrete is delivered. Not every job has a qualified concrete technician at the placement all the time. It is my opinion that an electronic delivery ticket could fulfill all the requirements of a printed one, and more besides.”

That discussion was the spark that resulted in this article describing mobile apps for concrete producers. Former TCP editor Shelby Mitchell explores five different companies that are offering, or are about to introduce, software for mobile devices aimed at concrete producers and their customers. This effort should result in significant changes to the way you do business. As BCMI’s Bernie Benson says, “We’re part of a movement to modernize the construction materials industry as a reaction to new economic realities.”

The construction industry as a whole has long been cautious about adopting new technology, whether it be materials or equipment or work processes. Some of this caution is justified — for example, quickly adopting an admixture to increase bond strength in masonry mortars 30 years ago resulted in many high-profile failures. But our world, and that includes construction, is changing at a rapidly accelerating rate, and trying to survive doing things the way they’ve always been done is simply not an option.

You may notice the absence of Rick Yelton’s photo and signature on this page. With the recent sale of the World of Concrete, Yelton has left Hanley Wood to become an Informa employee. He will continue to contribute to The Concrete Producer (see What’s New, "New association forms to promote ICFs.") but will no longer be editor. For now, you can still reach him at ryelton@hanleywood.com.