Why 300,000 tradies have this safety app in their back pocket

Jarrod Brown
By Jarrod Brown
5 Min Read

One Aussie tech company is trying to save tradie lives and stamp out safety hazards with a new worksite-wide smartphone app. 

Originally made to track tradies during the Covid lockdowns (remember that shit show?), the 1Breadcrumb app has now been retooled to “streamline safety workflows” in an effort to improve coms between head contractors and subbies on site. 

Sound like the usual buzzword bullshit you hear on daytime radio? Well, while the description in the store might send you to sleep, the undeniably handy app has quickly become a constant companion for tens of thousands of tradies across the country. 

1Breadcrumb does exactly what it says on the box, collecting and storing safety and compliance documentation all in one digital portal and handing tradies instant access to all of the information they need to get the job done – right in the palm of their hand. 

Every worker has access to their own personal profile via their smartphone, complete with the work licenses and certifications that inspectors love to check in the middle of a tough job and the relevant safety information needed to work in high-risk environments. 

CEO Simon Elliot said he hopes the app will spell the end of stuffing around with paperwork in the site shed and finally give tradies a voice on the job. 

“Everyone on site is connected and can communicate. Site workers and management can easily complete workflows, such as permits, from wherever they are, Elliot told Build-it.

“It puts safety in the palm of everyone’s hand onsite, not locked away in a filing cabinet at the site office. We get the safety information to where it needs to be, where the high-risk work is being undertaken.

“No more chasing people all over the site.”

Every year in Australia, SafeWork Australia estimates around 30 people are killed in the construction industry and site safety hazards are responsible for a whopping 12,500 serious injuries being claimed. 

SHEQ Manager Don Fowler says what he loves the most is the ability to send an instant alert out to everyone on the tools in the case of an emergency, or even if there’s just a parking inspector sniffing around site. 

“I really like that you can have it on your mobile phone and be on site and have access to all that info. This app lets me send push notifications to everyone on site in an instant,” says Fowler. 

“It’s a great system for anyone serious about providing oversight over your subcontractor workforce”.

Complete with the ability to instantly sync with popular project management software like Procore, the app has unsurprisingly exploded in popularity over the last four years and now has more than 25,000 subbies and 300,000 site workers across Australia and the UK logging in.

JWLand Business Development Manager Andy Simmonds says since taking on 1Breadcrumb and Procore to streamline his safety measures, business has been booming. 

“The increased efficiency and productivity have led to improved project outcomes, client satisfaction, and overall business success, he said. 

“We’re trusted more now to do larger projects compared to two years ago.”

But with 65 per cent of Aussie construction sites stuck using compliance paper trails, phone calls and text messages, Elliot says it’s clear thousands of tradies are still caught in a “bottleneck of confusing documentation” and often handed hours of manual admin. 

“We focus on the needs of the worker on site with an app of their own,” Elliot told Build-it. 

“It helps avoid the need to constantly share the same information multible times and streamlines workflows, helping site workers complete processes efficiently so they can do what they want to do, get on the tools faster.”

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Jarrod Brown combines his background in journalism, copywriting and digital marketing with a lifelong passion for storytelling. He has a strong passion for new and emerging consumer technology within the building sector. He lives on the Sunshine Coast - usually found glued to the deck of a surfboard.