01.07
2020

Ways to Optimize Your Company’s Communication

Communication is essential to good business, and if it’s a skill that’s suffering at your workplace, there are undoubtedly hidden costs that come into play. Poor communication can result in lowered morale at best, and incredibly costly mistakes at worst. In fact, according to The Holmes Report, the total cost of ineffective communication for 400 surveyed companies with at least 100,000 employees was a staggering $37 billion. Given these potentially catastrophic results, here are four steps you can take to make sure your organization is firing on all cylinders when it comes to efficiency and clear directives.

Ensure proper email etiquette is in place.

Even something as simple as training your employees with a quick, 10-minute video on best practices for email communication is a great way to help verify that things are conveyed clearly, concisely, and professionally. Also, emphasize the importance of spelling and grammar checks across your organization; whether it’s responding internally to a coworker or manager, or externally to a business customer, it’s always important to ensure that communications remain accurate so that respect for the recipient is consistently upheld.

Schedule meetings that are actually productive.

Meetings that accomplish nothing are more than just a waste of time; they can harm workforce productivity if they’re taking people away from their work and nothing’s being done. To mitigate this, define a handful of specific goals that the meeting needs to accomplish prior to its start time, and once those goals are all accomplished, end the meeting promptly. This helps everyone remain focused on finding solutions, rather than on arbitrary conversations. Asking the individuals in the meeting for feedback about your strategies also welcomes additional diversity to the discussion, which is another essential element to good workplace communication.

Implement an efficient chain of command.

For certain forms of internal communication, such as purchase order or product collateral requests, it’s always a smart idea to establish protocols. Following standard operating procedures enables your team members to reach out to the correct individuals for these requests from the start, eliminate unnecessary back-and-forth, and ensure that the correct materials are received expediently.

Use Encore to coordinate with employees that work away from the office.

Our flagship mobile application, Encore, can help you more efficiently communicate with your internal and mobile staff by allowing your administrators to send out new instructions to them on the fly, receive collected data from the field digitally, and more. As the most powerful solution listed here for helping keep your communication inefficiencies to a minimum, Encore works to provide companies like yours with features for high savings.

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12.17
2019

Season’s Greetings From Actsoft and Our New Corporate Vision

The prosperity of our customers and business partners remains our highest priority here at Actsoft. This holiday season, we’d like to take a moment to thank each and every business we’ve had the chance to work with over the course of the past year, as well as restate our commitment to their successes both now and in the future.

We typically take this time of year to reflect on all of the efforts we’ve made in working on our solutions, individual customer experiences, and processes over the past few quarters to ensure they remained as positive as possible. Seeing what was most effective and striving to fill next year with even more of those moments is a key principle for our team. It’s also an exciting time for us during the holiday season because of our return to the drawing board, as we begin to conceptualize future enhancements to our mobile resource management applications.

Heading into 2020, we’re looking to collect even more crucial feedback from our customers and design software to match it, providing businesses with even more tools that they can use to gain an edge in their respective markets. We’ve also worked hard to compose a new vision statement for 2020 that speaks more directly to our recently refined corporate focus, development strategy, and dedication to customer success.

Our vision:

We foster lasting relationships, empowering the Actsoft community with creative business solutions that promote a more prosperous and productive economy.

Now that we’re equipped with a new vision statement, Actsoft’s overall business philosophy is more effectively aligned with the needs of the customer and partner relationships we service on a daily basis. Our unwavering commitment to helping your team achieve its maximum potential remains as strong as ever heading into the new decade.

May your workforce be filled with success this season and into the future!

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12.11
2019

How to Avoid Lawsuits With GPS Tracking Technology

In today’s economy, companies can be easy targets for people looking to make a quick buck. When it comes to defending assets in a lawsuit, it is critical to have evidence to back up claims or to defend against fraudulent ones. GPS tracking devices can now help save a company thousands or even millions of dollars in legal fees.

Employees and customers also see the opportunity to cheat the system. An unhappy employee may claim owed wages when work was never actually done. An unhappy customer may suggest that a large construction crew or field service company damaged their property. Now, it’s easy to review records, routes, photos, or signatures and verify if activity actually took place — or did not.

Customers often believe they can easily cash in when they see the name of a popular utility company on the side of a van. They may claim faulty service, damage, speeding, or even that a worker arrived late or didn’t even show up at all. Now, there’s proof to confirm or dispute such claims. With GPS tracking technology, companies can save money on legal fees while preserving their reputation.

Keep Workers Accountable
If one of your drivers is in an accident while on the clock, how can you verify whether they were driving dangerously or speeding? If you suspect that an employee was taking unauthorized time off from work and caused an accident while driving back to a job site, can you prove it? You can! When you’re using our solutions, a supervisor can review current and past worker locations, time of arrival, time of departure, work completed, etc. Plus, with the ability to take photos from a worksite and collect customer signatures right at the time of service, not only is there instant verification, but there’s also a quicker way to speed up payroll processes from the field to the office.

Make Your Case
GPS tracking can validate where any employee is, where they have been and when, and if they are/were within or outside the boundaries of a specific, predetermined area at any given time. In the event of an accident, there’s no need to rely on forgetful witnesses. If there was a time lapse between the incident and the claim, important details that make or break a case may be lost.

Save Money
Tracking solutions actually speed up claim processing and cut down on administrative costs. But the real savings comes from the reliability of historical data from GPS tracking to defend against phony claims. Such tracking solutions dramatically cut down administrative costs, keep insurance down, and help avoid unnecessary claims. There’s no need for an in-depth investigation, as GPS tracking system provides the data where and when you need it. This doesn’t just help prevent stress; it can also be expensive. But by keeping a clear record of your fleet activity, you can keep your premiums down and minimize unnecessary claims.

Keep Track
GPS tracking is designed to protect your drivers, save you money, and increase the productivity of your fleet. By keeping an independent record of your fleet’s activities, it’s easy to defend drivers that might be targeted with fraudulent claims, misconduct, or accusations.

Be prepared to defend your fleet against expensive lawsuits. When you install Actsoft’s Encore, you will be able to defend and protect your fleet against expensive lawsuits, save money, increase efficiency, and preserve your company’s reputation.

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12.10
2019

Actsoft’s Strategic Partnerships

At Actsoft, we take pride in the strategic partnerships we’ve forged with many other industry leaders over the years. They’ve allowed us to construct better avenues to support our dedicated customers, establishing a variety of solutions options that can fulfill the needs of virtually any workforce.

We partner with makers of hardware and additional software solutions alike to bring your team all the tools it needs for increased efficiency, productivity, and savings. The returns our solutions can provide to your business are even more powerful once paired with the additional resources each of our alliances actively offer.

See our list of strategic partners here and what each can do to help your organization flourish.

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12.03
2019

Keep Parcels More Secure During Holiday Deliveries with Asset Tracking

As mentioned in a previous post, the number of parcels being delivered this holiday season is likely to increase from years past. With companies like Amazon making online ordering and residential delivery even more popular, it’s clear that accessibility and convenience are currently as important as ever to the average consumer during their shopping experience.

For companies needing to ship packages, especially around Christmastime, tracking the delivery vehicles is one thing, but if those vehicles become separated from the cargo they’re hauling, product security also becomes jeopardized. Luckily, with Actsoft solutions, your team can gain comprehensive knowledge on where its shipping containers and trailers are, with Alerts for tampering outside of specific hours. Easily attach compatible sensors to the doors of your semi-truck trailers to help keep parcels more secure, as you’ll know precisely when the shipping containers they’re in are opened.

Run a more secure and efficient delivery operation with Asset Tracking that works to keep your administrators informed in near real-time. Our software solutions function in tandem with many different types of tracking hardware to display GPS positions of all your business’s assets, allowing you to choose the devices that are best for your business’s specific trailer types. From the warehouse to the distribution zone, your team can also easily establish digital perimeters with Geofences and receive notifications any time a trailer with valuable cargo enters or exits their boundaries.

Save time and money and provide additional peace of mind to your customers by using Asset Tracking to help verify that the products your business ships remain secure at all times. The stress surrounding holiday season logistics can hurt your company’s reputation and bottom line if left to spiral out of control; make sure the parcels in your delivery vehicles’ trailers are reaching their destinations securely and expediently with our digital tracking solutions.

Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?

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11.26
2019

The Benefits of a Company Newsletter

Keeping everyone in your organization on the same page is essential to success, and one tried and true method of doing so is through a recurring newsletter that’s sent internally to your employees.

As a dynamic piece of content, your newsletter should effectively blend both graphics and text to convey your messaging. And while not all of the benefits of a newsletter may be strictly numbers-based, there’s something to be said about how creating one can bring your company closer together and work to inform employees of happenings in your organization, particularly outside of what their typical day-to-day schedules would normally include. Here are three major pluses that composing a newsletter can provide to your business.

Enhanced focus

Coordinate with your company’s leadership team about what topics will be addressed for your newsletter and try to thread a singular message throughout the entire piece. This works to provide insight to your staff and helps them realize the most important major corporate-wide objective at hand, improving organizational clarity.

Initiatives communicated

Reiterate the current primary goals for your business when creating your newsletter. If there are any key projects affecting multiple departments, provide updates within the content on what’s been accomplished, as well as what’s on the horizon. Communicating initiatives and documenting their progressions gives your team everything it needs to seamlessly shift from one task to the next in a more efficient, productive manner.

Buy-in generated

Featured sections of your newsletter where different viewpoints or departmental highlights are given can greatly improve engagement across your entire workforce. If multiple individuals from various departments have a hand in sharing information for your newsletter, buy-in is generated and employees become even more empowered.

For any other methods of communication your company may require, Actsoft solutions can help. With features built into our all-in-one business management software that help you reach your mobile employees nearly instantly, you can coordinate operations with ease. An effective newsletter keeps your staff up to date on a weekly, monthly, or quarterly basis; for all other needs, our solutions allow you to efficiently communicate with them at a moment’s notice.

Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?

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11.22
2019

Using Actsoft Solutions to Sustain Your Business

Reliability is a big part of what we develop our applications for at Actsoft. We place a heavy emphasis on making our solutions ultra-dependable in order to help your business ingrain every feature of them into routine operations for consistent, sustained support that continues to elevate the power of your workforce.

Versatility is another philosophy we’ve made essential to the design process of our solutions. For our customers, having a single application to address many of the challenges associated with managing mobile employees, assets, and vehicles is critically important. Michael Courter, Actsoft’s vice president of product management, knows the value of consolidation and adaptability as two essential traits for our software, and he’s continuously learning about new ways in which they’re improving processes for our clients.

“One of my favorite things to do is to go out and visit with customers. It’s important to see how they are using the product and gain feedback on how we can make things even better,” said Courter. “As part of this, it’s always amazing to see how leveraging Actsoft solutions has made an impact on so many businesses. From using forms to capture information, leveraging GPS Tracking and Job Dispatching to save time and money, or using geofence alerts or other methods of communication throughout the software, companies have transformed how they do business.”

Courter believes in the power of what Actsoft solutions can do for organizations of any size. Through systems integration that provides adaptability to workforces, as well as a suite of features to streamline communication, our products bring dispersed staff closer together and reduce gaps in their teams’ productivity, efficiency, and transparency.

“Implementing technology that connects the office to the field not only saves our customers money,” Courter said. “It also continues to help them truly provide better service in order to gain and retain more of their own customer base.”

Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?

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11.01
2019

Professional Services Spotlight: QuickBooks Integration

Last week, we introduced you to the world of our Professional Services team, a group of talented individuals who are responsible for spearheading the more labor-intensive integration projects that some of our customers don’t have the resources to execute for themselves.

While we continue to explore the various projects that our Professional Services team takes on, you’ll quickly see that their capabilities are quite extensive. Last time, we showed you how they were able to save one company a lot of time and money by creating a custom business intelligence dashboard. This week, we’re going to take a look at how they handled QuickBooks integration with another of our customers.

Order Integration with QuickBooks

The Challenge: This delivery service was using QuickBooks Online (QBO) as their invoicing tool to keep track of orders that needed to be delivered. Historically, they would print out the invoices for their drivers at the beginning of each workday, which drivers used to appropriately load their vehicles and then refer to at each delivery site.

Rather than continue to rely on this tedious process, the customer wanted to have invoice information automatically feed into Encore via the Dispatching tool. This would allow the back office to save time and resources by cutting back on so much printing. Plus, drivers wouldn’t have to haul piles of paperwork around every day.

The Solution: Our Professional Services team was able to create a workflow that synced the customer’s QuickBooks Online account with our Encore solution. So now, whenever the customer creates an invoice using QBO, the integration our team put together — using Microsoft Flow — automatically generates an order in Encore.

Taking it a step further, they also added a feature that would create a PDF of each QBO invoice. These invoices can be uploaded to a Dropbox account, with a sharable URL included on each order form, allowing drivers to easily view the full invoice, as the customer would receive it, right on their phones.

The solution that Professional Services came up with for this customer greatly sped up their processes and ultimately saved them both time and money. It’s just another example of the innovative thinking this team puts forward and demonstrates the potential return for your business if you were to take advantage of their expertise.

Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?

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10.28
2019

Why Telematics Is More Than a Buzzword

Now that we have all this information at our fingertips — from GPS positioning and driver behavior, to consumer trends and asset locations, what do we do with it? For the last few decades, we’ve gotten ever more sophisticated at collecting and tracking data, but the latest goal is developing systems to act on that information in a meaningful and valuable way.

This is precisely why the notion of telematics is not just a passing blip in the Twittersphere or in techy magazines. Telematics, which integrates information with telecommunications, is now ubiquitous in the M2M industry, including GPS technology and even satellite radio.

In the past, one of the major concerns for many companies was not only having all this information, but also multiple platforms from which to assimilate and act upon it. In short, it seemed less of an advantage and more of a headache, so there’s been a huge push for single-management platforms for multiple tasks, such as dispatching and route optimization — a single control panel to rule them all.

So companies, like Actsoft, are at the forefront of this industry by offering a wide range of telematics services to solve multiple problems through a single interface. By consolidating data from multiple touch points into a single stream, information has the potential to become richer, and patterns even more apparent. Once you have this piece of the puzzle in place, the fun begins: What do you do with all this information?

Because the impressive ROI of telematics-enabled services has been proven for years, more companies who depend on a wide variety of M2M operations – from asset locating devices to cloud-based wireless forms — want to know how they can add even more value to existing software. We offer an effective and full-scope suite of M2M, integrated mobile solutions that work in tandem with third-party clients, creating specialized, unique uses. This type of customization is becoming more popular in the telematics world as the data that’s meaningful to one company may not be to another. An example would be adapting an asset-protection device, meant to prevent theft of heavy machinery, by sending alerts to a marketing research situation where two items are being A/B tested. The researcher would know which item is picked up more, moved, and inspected. This stream of data could also be integrated with information from other telematics solutions such as wireless forms in understanding how many forms are filled out in relation to how often a product was moved and so on.

The data insights are limitless and as technology advances more rapidly, these solutions become surprisingly affordable — so much so that it becomes costly not to have them.

Whatever the trends are in today’s more complex world of systems and analysis, one thing is for certain: Having even a base level telematics-meets-big-data software solution will be the norm from which every competitive business will be operating. What you do with the information is another system altogether.

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10.25
2019

Professional Services Spotlight: Business Intelligence Dashboard

Here at Actsoft, we pride ourselves not only on our ability to provide companies with affordable, easy-to-implement solutions that help them reshape the way they do business every day, but also in being able to offer additional services that go one step further and help implement our software in ways that companies may never have realized was possible, nor would have had the ability to execute themselves.

For these types of projects, our Professional Services team is available to take on the intricate back-end work on your behalf, handling all the development work necessary to get you up and running as fast as possible with a more powerful, time- and money-saving system in place, to help make your company realize its true potential.

So what types of projects can our Professional Services team handle? Glad you asked. We’re going to start sharing a selection of use cases — all from real Actsoft customers — to give you a better understanding of just what our talented team can do.

Creating a Custom Business Intelligence Dashboard

The Challenge: This customer, who operates a refrigeration service business, needed an easy way for their technicians to quickly review customer history and know what tasks had previously been performed. Historically, their method was inefficient and required techs to call the office, relay equipment serial numbers, request that an on-the-spot report be pulled, and then have the service history relayed.

Making matters worse, there was no way for the office to pull reports based on serial numbers. They could only search by user and date range and since there was no way to know when the equipment was last serviced and by whom, they had to pull a much broader report and scour through significantly more results for the serial number in question in order to find the needed information.

To say the least, it was not efficient.

The Solution: Our Professional Services team was able to create an integration that automatically saved all of the company’s equipment history forms, which then fed into a business intelligence dashboard that displays all submissions. They built a search filter that allows users to search specifically for the serial number. From there, they could review the history specifically for that unit.

To make it even easier, our team generated a URL for the dashboard, meaning that technicians can easily access the database from the field (as long as they have mobile service) and search for the equipment history themselves … without having to call the office.

Just imagine all the time this company is now saving from this easy-to-use feature. That’s the kind of game-changing solution our Professional Services team excels at delivering to our customers. Think about what they could do for your business.

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