In 2001, Victor, N.Y.-based Waste Harmonics was purchased by its now Founder and CEO Michael Hess. Servicing primarily the Northeast region of the U.S., it was a small company that provided service brokering in the waste industry.
“Over the years, we enjoyed modest growth, competing with the ‘big guys’ in our industry,” says Hess. “Our real growth didn’t occur until Waste Management purchased Oakleaf Waste Management back in 2011. We knew this deal would create some opportunity for us, so we leveraged up our back office in an effort to put us in a position to work within a more national footprint.”
The company also hired a sales staff in 2012, which is when its growth really started to happen. That same year, and at the request of a new client at the time, Waste Harmonics worked with both an equipment manufacturer and an industrial engineering group from Chicago to introduce its iWaste integrated waste compactor monitoring service.
iWaste is Internet of Things-based, allowing it to monitor and measure companies’ waste and recycling processes through a web-based dashboard that offers a single, secure access point for monitoring waste and recycling equipment, equipment status and trouble alerts.
“Because we are fully integrated, we are able monitor much deeper into the equipment. We have gained visibility into virtually each operating component,” says Hess. “There are a few ways we help our customers. Because we monitor in real time, we can be very proactive in the operating environment, anticipating trouble. And, because we monitor fullness, we are able to maximize payloads for our customers, as part of our management services.”
iWaste also provides real-time fullness status for compactors, including pickup and return status, pickup history and upcoming scheduled haul and activity logs. Additionally, the system eliminates the potential for human error in monitoring and allows the Waste Harmonics team to remote monitor and troubleshoot for customers around the globe.
Since launching iWaste, Waste Harmonics has worked to improve the system, collecting customer and internal feedback and reprogramming more than 300 compactors three times over to ensure iWaste delivers maximum innovation and value to customers.
One of those customers is Youngblood Disposal Service based in Rochester, N.Y. In business since 1947, the company has been utilizing the iWaste system to monitor self-contained and stationary compactor fullness at various locations for several months.
“Customer service [is a benefit]. It is especially helpful in situations where there are many ‘users,’ such as a university,” says Tom Moran, vice president of sales for Youngblood. “It enables us to stay ahead of the customer’s needs, ensuring they are never packed out and therefore down. It also helps us to be more operationally efficient, as we can service the site in a timely fashion rather than an emergency type scenario.”
Choosing the system based on its reliability and cost, Moran says that Youngblood did not have any major issues installing the iWaste system as it was handled from start to finish by the Waste Harmonics team.
“This system is a win for us and our clients in that it enables us to be more efficient, and it removes the monitoring of the compactor from our clients’ to-do list,” he says. “[It is an] innovative technology that enables us to separate ourselves from our competition.”
Waste Harmonics is currently testing the product on vertical balers, standalone compactors and small containers.