If you wanted to work in an office shuffling paper youâ€™d be working for city hall, right?
No tradesperson is in it for the love of the white stuff.
Is there a better way to handle your job management?
Paper is so 1950s. Itâ€™s almost 2020. There are better ways to manage your operations.
How many apps do you have on your phone? Is there an all-in-one app that could automate all your admin functions?
One app would be better than separate apps for each function. One would be easier to get your head around, and the different functions would link together without you having to spend time working out how to connect them.
There are two common quoting techniques:
- Walk around the premises, making notes and promising to get back tomorrow with a quote
- Walk around the premises, enter data in your app, allow the app to calculate the price, preview the price and send the quotation as a PDF file to the customerâ€™s email address while you are still with her.
Tradespeople who use #2 will get more orders because their enthusiasm is contagious, the customer sees how much you want the job, and you can overcome any objections she raises there and then. Option #2 also reduces the chance the customer will look for another quote from a competing business.
When someone accepts your quote and asks about a start date, you need to be able to give an immediate answer rather than going back to your office to check who is available.
Your trade app must include a scheduling capability that is accessible from your phone or tablet. The customer will love the organization and professionalism you show when you can confidently tell them the date and time your employee will arrive to start work.
Would it help if every employee automatically checked in at the end of a job so you could check the hours spent? It could undoubtedly reduce wasted time at the end of the day as well as making invoicing more accurate than it is when someone has to remember what time they finished.
An app could do that.
What happens when something unexpected happens, and a job needs an extra part that needs to be ordered? With an app on everyoneâ€™s phones, every employee would automatically take the next job on the schedule, even if changes were made after they left the base that morning.
How do you know where your people are if an emergency call comes in?
If they have company cell phones, you can install an app that tells you where the phone is 24/7. You donâ€™t need to pay $1,200 for a new iPhone. An Android smartphone at $100 and a free GPS app will do the job perfectly well. You can then keep track of everyoneâ€™s cell phone from your mobile device or office desktop.
If you know where everyone is it gives you extra options when a customer emergency strikes.
Your app could generate invoices with just one click as soon as your employee has finished work.
Compare that to your current invoicing procedures. No more evenings spent checking quotations against materials used and how long the job actually took.
What if your app synced with your accounts? Would that make life easier?
The best apps will update your accounts receivable, the value of goods in hand and even prepare your reports for the IRS.
If you have more than a handful of customers, you will miss some late payments and then wonder why you have no money in the bank to pay your bills.
Apps can alert you when a bill has not been paid so you can either phone the customer or send a reminder.
Weak cash flow can kill your business, and a specialist app for tradespeople could help prevent problems developing.
Long Story Short
If you are still using 1950s-era paper methods of job management, itâ€™s time for a change. Using a specialist trade app could let you regain hours of time every day and help you convert more inquiries into jobs.