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  • Herriman, UT
  • Captured: September 1, 2018

Case Study:
Auric Solar

Auric Solar Shines Brighter with Nearmap Aerial Imagery

With Nearmap’s clear, current aerial captures, Auric reduces change orders, improves its qualification process and drafts winning proposals.
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Auric Solar is a full-service provider of residential and commercial solar power, with offices in Colorado, Idaho, Oregon and Utah. The company is committed to providing home and business owners with affordable, clean and reliable solar power. Auric’s installers are trained by professionals with North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP) certification—ensuring a faster and more precise installation.

Founded in 2010 in a South Jordan, Utah garage, Auric Solar is now one of the fastest growing companies in the nation, with recognition on three consecutive Inc. 5000 lists. With the influx of business, Auric sought a more efficient way to assess, measure, plan and execute solar panel installations.

Auric turned to Nearmap, a location content provider, for high-resolution, frequently updated, aerial images to accelerate initial assessments, have a more complete and accurate view of properties, request solar panels and create winning proposals, all from the comfort of their office. Auric accesses Nearmap imagery through the Aurora Solar platform, a solar sales and design software program.

Challenge

Before using Nearmap aerial imagery, Auric Solar resorted to using satellite imagery from Bing and Google Maps to qualify properties. With outdated, blurry imagery, it was difficult to make accurate assessments. “With satellite imagery, a lot of the roof’s small details were lost. It was hard to determine where one roof pitch started and where another ended,” said Tyler Soukup, Director of Analytics at Auric Solar. “It was like trying to examine one big, blurry square.”

"For properties with a complicated roof shape, it was nearly impossible to order the right number of panels based on the imagery,” remarked Soukup. “We would quote the customer 30 panels and the job would actually only require 15. Those change orders were inconvenient and costly for the business.”

The Auric Solar team had no reliable way of viewing the same property in multiple seasons. This made it difficult to accurately qualify a house before sending a technician for an on-site assessment. For instance, if a satellite image of a home was taken in wintertime, there was no way of knowing whether tree leaves would block too much of a roof to make solar a viable option for the customer.

Solution

By utilizing Aurora software integrated with Nearmap, high-resolution images, Soukup’s team now has access to crystal clear and current imagery.

“ Aurora’s responsive engineering interface coupled with Nearmap’s high resolution captures allows us to use a combination of 3-D lidar models and 2-D high-resolution maps for complete accuracy. This equips both the sales and analytics teams with accurate information to save time, money and serve the customer. “

- Tyler Soukup, Director of Analytics at Auric Solar

Reducing Change Orders
Before Auric had access to Nearmap imagery, change orders were an obstacle for the business. Without an accurate, up-to-date base map for measuring, planning and requesting panels, calculations were often incorrect, throwing off the entire sales process. “We would lose more contracts due to change orders than anything else,” said Soukup. “Now, we can make accurate measurements, run production numbers, identify obstructions and craft proposals all within the program. The salesmen, analysts and installers are all on the same page—significantly reducing change orders, because we get it right the first time.”

Improving the Qualification Process
Not only does current aerial imagery save Auric a significant amount of time with less onsite visits to qualify homes, but it also opens up more customers to solar. Because Nearmap’s imagery is updated every three to four months, analysts can see recent changes to a property such as a tree that’s been removed or and new roof—details that would not be represented in out-of-date imagery— and would then disqualify the candidate from solar.

Auric analysts also have access to Nearmap historical imagery from years past—including leaf-on and leaf-off imagery— the presence or lack of the foliage depending on the season. This greatly enhances shading analysis, making it easier to place the panels for maximum sun exposure.

“We’ve been able to qualify more customers than ever because of Nearmap’s clear, current captures. You really can't accurately qualify a property without up to date imagery,” notes Soukup.

Winning Proposals and Professional Marketing Materials
By including annotated, high-resolution imagery in proposals, customers are impressed and have a clear understanding of the project. “Auric is a large regional player, taking on projects that are quoted up to $20,000 to a few million dollars, and our proposals and marketing materials should match that level of value. Nearmap helps us achieve that. It creates a “wow” factor,” said Soukup.

The Auric Sales representatives also love using the imagery to close the deal. Potential customers can visualize what their home would look like with panels, and the salesman can educate them on the solar installation process.

Summary

Implementing Nearmap integrated with Aurora has accelerated and improved Auric Solar's operations in multiple ways. The accuracy and timeliness of images allow Auric to reduce change orders, enhance the qualification process and create winning proposals. The all-in-one solution saves time, money and leaves the customer happy in their eco-friendly home.

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Auric Solar is a full-service provider of residential and commercial solar power, with offices in California, Colorado, Idaho, Oregon and Utah. The company is committed to providing home and business owners with an easy way to be powered by affordable, clean and reliable solar power. Founded in 2010 in a South Jordan, Utah, garage, Auric is now one of the fastest growing companies in the nation, with recognition on three consecutive Inc. 500 lists. As the most positively ranked solar company in the nation on SolarReviews.com, Auric Solar was built on a foundation of providing exceptional customer service every step of the way—even after installation.

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