Jeff Herboldshimer desperately needed to regain time for his personal life and his search for the solution ultimately impacted his entire career. He describes how he now collects data and takes photos with his PDA so he can complete inspection reports on site. Jeff also enjoys offering personalized software training to new users/inspectors, and tells he how he was the only one to finish a report demonstration at a recent chapter meeting- and in half the time allotted!

Jeff Herboldshimer“I clearly remember the day Carl Fowler and 3D Inspection Systems changed my Professional Inspection Career. I began a search for new software years ago, on a Monday morning after a weekend of trying to write two reports, attend my sons basketball games, pour a large (20 yard) concrete slab, attend church, etc. I realized the software I was using was not capable of producing the report that I desired in a minimum amount of time and I needed to make a change. I even attempted to write my own report program based on Microsoft Access. I had some specific ideas on what I expected my software to do and look like and was on a search for a solution.

The first three companies I called were not interested in what my needs were, only to explain that their software was the answer to the home inspectors needs. The forth call was to 3D Inspection Software and Carl Fowler answered the phone. I began to explain what I wanted and Carl stopped me and said “sounds interesting can you send me a sample?” I faxed a couple of pages explaining the features I was looking for and about an hour later he called back and told me “our software can’t do exactly what you want, but I have sent you a sample showing how we can come close”. Carl even offered I give the program a try and pay for it only if worked for me. The sample was very close and the program proved to have the flexibility and features to expand on my original ideas and produce a report that I am proud to present to my clients.

This first experience revealed a great deal about 3D Inspection Software. The first is very obvious; the software is very powerful with a ton of features. Another is perhaps the most important; it is extremely flexible and adaptable to many reporting styles. Over the years that I have used the program, I have come to appreciate the relationships I have developed with the 3D staff. They have been helpful, supportive and encouraging.

I am first a working home inspector and 3D allows me to do 2 and sometimes 3 inspection in a day and not spend my evenings at the computer. I generally start my inspections on a handheld. This allows me to take photos and enter theme directly into the report as I go. I enter as much of the information on the PDA and when done, I sync up to the laptop and most of the inspection is done...and then I review the report. After a little editing, I am ready to send off the report from my truck (did I mention that I do my reports on site in my F350 4WD office) using an air card. My usual goal is to complete the inspection report before I leave the site; most times I will send the report that night or in the morning so the client might believe I have slaved over his project. Doing two inspections in a day is typically not an issue, but it is always condition driven. My average report is 20 pages long and will have 20-30 photos.

I have also had the pleasure of providing some inspection software training. This has been done thru the West Coast Inspection Training Center in classroom settings, or on a one on one tutoring basis, some traveling as far away as Connecticut. I have found this to be very enjoyable and have developed some great friendships with other inspectors. My particular philosophy is to encourage the students to explore the programs features and tailor their inspection software to reflect their style and satisfy their market and clients needs. I do not know any two inspectors that use 3D in the same way, and I think this is a compliment to built-in flexibility of the program.

I recently went to a bay area chapter meeting where I was asked to show the features of the 3D software. There were 3 other programs being present as well. It was very interesting to see the other programs demonstrated, it made me appreciate the software I had chosen and realize all the time I had spent fine tuning my form sets allowed me to complete reports so easily. We were given 45 minutes to enter 20+ photos and complete a report. I was the only one to finish (21 minutes). After the demonstration, one of the other presenters explained he was in the market for new software and he had just made up his mind which software he was going to purchase.

I am going to be adding infrared thermography and weatherization evaluations to my inspection business and I know I will be able to incorporate them into my 3D Inspection Software System.

I can honestly say, the Monday morning that Carl Fowler answered the phone and offered a software solution that has allowed me so many opportunities, has made a difference in my professional inspection career that no other software could have provided.”

Jeff Herboldshimer
Associated Inspection Services
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