Providing transparency in Waste Removal

With increasing pressure on profit margins, meeting project deadlines, and abiding by environmental standards, the construction industry has been greatly affected by changes in industry standards.

Waste removal is a huge part of the construction and demolition process and it has an effect on all three of these concerns. This is why it is so critical for you to understand the waste removal process and the corresponding data. As an industry we are behind the curve on technology enhancements leading to a lower level of transparency. As they say, “you are what you measure” and as a vendor contractors depend on, we are feeling pressure to measure, track and communicate key metrics and data points. These metrics can not only support your needs but also help you make more informed and cost effective decisions and optimize your business.

Issues with job-site waste removal

1. Cost - In the current environment, it is more important than ever for you to make sure that you are using the most effective methods possible to cut costs on their job-sites. And while one of the most significant contributors to the bottom line of construction jobs is waste removal, it is often one of the most overlooked aspects of the overall costs. There are three main reasons why contractors overspend on waste removal:

  • Lack of data for estimations on material quantity and composition mix. Understanding the amount of material that you have on your job-site and the type of materials that you will be disposing of is crucial in order to determine what your approximate waste removal costs will be. However, as it currently stands, the waste industry typically does not have many technology solutions to provide you with those data points. The lack of data tracking and transparency poses an age old problem of not being able to estimate their waste removal costs accurately. Therefore, your construction budgets can quite often be estimated far below what the actual costs end up being.

  • Limited knowledge made accessible on how to achieve potential savings. In addition to the miscalculations, there are ways in which you can save money on your waste removal by using single-stream disposal methods. A majority of the time haulers will not spend the time educating their clients. When possible, there are ways in which you can actually dispose of your waste and achieve some level of savings that you wouldn’t be able to achieve by mixing materials. This takes a great deal of education and organization to accomplish, plus a partnership with a hauler who will cooperate from a process and pricing perspective. Due to that fact, it is something that falls by the wayside a majority of the time.

  • Little transparency on dumping and how that affects pricing. Many haulers price in such a way that can be confusing and cause you to owe a lot of money once the waste has already been removed. In many cases, the industry uses dynamic pricing which amounts to a base price for a dumpster that also includes an allowable tonnage. In the case that the weight of that dumpster exceeds the tonnage cap, you will pay an overage price per ton. Due to the uncertain nature of back charging for weight, data and trend analysis becomes more crucial to the bidding process.

2. Logistics - Along with cost concerns, from a logistical standpoint, construction job progress also depends on how quickly waste can be removed from the site. For example, empty dumpsters need to be provided in a timely fashion so that you can continue your work. A dumpster may need to be removed in a timely manner in order to make room for your new material delivery. Understanding approximately when your hauler will be delivering or removing your dumpsters is extremely important when it comes to planning out your day on the job accordingly. A focus on achieving job-site efficiencies and meeting deadlines is required and working with a reliable and trustworthy hauler like us is one way to ensure that. Technology plays a crucial role in the process of communicating with clients on when a dumpster should be expected for delivery or removal. In lieu of you having to call to order and find out where your dumpsters are, software is used to create a portal for you to order your dumpsters digitally as well as track the ETA via an Uber-like interface. This eliminates the uncertainty and provides efficiencies for everybody.

3. Analytics - Environmental standards for construction are becoming even more stringent, which includes the disposal of waste on-site. Many new developments are required to follow LEED guidelines by separating waste streams and achieving a specified diversion rate.

Transparency is key and our normal

We believe that technology is the future for both the construction and waste industries. That is why we have developed a client facing portal for you that provides transparency you need to get your job done in the most efficient and cost effective manner possible. With the use of our technology, we strive to help you with a better waste solution. The following features help combat some of the main struggles that contractors currently face when it comes to on-the-job waste disposal:

1. Integrated billing - to address some of the issues related to your waste costs, we provide integrated billing within our portal. You can see exactly what your dumpster is going to cost you on the front end and also access any dump tickets in relation to weight charges after pickup. In addition to being able to see the total weight of your dumpsters, you will also have access to the material breakdown of each dumpster. This end-to-end access of data related to every dumpster will assist you with getting a better understanding of estimations for future projects, as well as your mix of materials and the cost associated with those specific materials. Our goal is to help you estimate better, utilize certain disposal methods that can help you save, and also provide full transparency on the costs of your services. With more cost related data at your disposal, you will be able to make more informed decisions regarding your projects and budgets.

2. Logistics - to address issues that you may face related to waste removal logistics Curbside offers the following two features in our client portal:

  • Mobile order placement - Through our platform you are able to place orders anywhere and at any time. By logging into our portal either on your computer or mobile device, you can view all of the dumpsters that you currently have on-site and place new orders directly. Multiple lengthy phone calls per day have now been eliminated, as well as allowing you to place orders at your own convenience.

  • Live ETA - In addition to mobile ordering, Curbside also offers a live ETA function to allow you to better prepare your work day on the job-site. As soon as our driver is on their way to your job, you will receive a text message notification with a link to view the truck’s location and get a better understanding of approximately what time the driver will arrive. In addition, you are able to log in to the portal at any time to view these ETAs. You no longer need to reach out via phone for time estimates, you can simply click a button to receive the information and manage your day’s work accordingly.

3. Waste analytics - to address concerns around the lack of access to data in relation to waste disposal, we provide on-demand reporting through the portal. You are able to download reports for different job sites or various date ranges to get a better understanding of your job waste flow and costs. More importantly, sustainability details as well as on-demand LEEDv4 compliant reporting is available with one click of a button.

Michael Marmo is the founder and president of Curbside Inc. He founded Curbside with the mission to bring a more tech forward approach to the waste and recycling business. Curbside launched in 2017 and has grown to work with over 250 contractors, property managers, and developers. What began with one small garbage truck has turned into a fleet of 7 vehicles and hundreds of tons moved per day. Michael continues to invest and innovate, implementing the latest technologies and experiences. This includes launching the first ever customer portal and ecommerce platform in the waste business in 2020 as well as providing the first real time on demand reporting and a live view of the truck arriving to the requested site.

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