07.12
2019

That Busy CEO Life and How Actsoft Can Help

Recently, while perusing the latest tech headlines, as I’m wont to do, I came across a headline that stood out to me for two reasons. One: Even though it was clearly labeled a sponsored post, I actually felt compelled enough by the headline to click through, which is a rarity for me. (Kudos, Mashable, you clever monkey.) Two: It promised to show the day of one New York City–based CEO in 60 seconds … a New York minute, if you will. Given the nature of the company I worked for, I thought it would be both interesting and insightful to get a little glimpse of what that life can be like.

If you’re a business owner, you’re more than familiar with the concept of nonstop busy days. Days where, between your personal responsibilities and your work obligations, your waking hours are pretty much spoken for. But as we’ve mentioned in the past, as important as it is to give your all in making sure your company is a thriving success, it’s just as vital that you carve out time to maintain some semblance of a work-life balance.That’s why it’s essential to find and implement the right tools that serve to streamline processes, cut out unnecessary steps, and improve efficiency in your day-to-day activities. That’s exactly where we come into the picture.

Using our suite of tools, business owners are given the ability to simplify many of the daily tasks they and their team undertake. Timely procedures are sped up, leaving your workers with more time during the day during which they can take on more work orders, increasing your company’s bottom line.

As a business owner, you can rely more on your management team to mold your field workers into a synergetic efficiency machine using these day-to-day tools. This lets you focus on the bigger picture, which our tools also help with while removing the necessity of being on-site as frequently as you would need to be otherwise.

Using our system, you can pull up top-level overviews of the goings on at your business, running reports on everything from timekeeping (to make sure employees aren’t clocking egregious amounts of overtime due to early/offsite punching in/out) to vehicle paths (to curb inefficiently long routes driven between job sites, as well as excessively wasteful idling times). Forms that require your signature, such as expense reports, can all be digitized and sent to your phone, letting you quickly sign off and pass them along to your accounting team for faster processing.

All of this — and so much more — can be done using our tools. Not to mention, our recently released Manager App gives you all of this functionality from your mobile device, so you don’t even have to be at a desktop anymore, giving you so much more flexibility to run your business without giving up your social life.

Our job is to make your job easier. Because part of owning a successful business is being able to make the time to enjoy the fruits of your labor.

Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?

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07.10
2019

Talent Is Not the Key to Success

You might be surprised by what is. In a word: organization. The ability to assemble a variety of moving parts in such a way that they work efficiently is the key to any company’s success — whether you own an accounting firm or doughnut shop. Understanding and managing the flow of daily operations can save businesses hundreds of thousands of dollars. And with today’s user-friendly technology, more and more people are adopting software solutions to help them streamline their processes and manage employee activities, meetings, appointments, and projects.

“Time management isn’t just a personal productivity issue over which companies have no control. It has increasingly become an organizational issue whose root causes are deeply embedded in corporate structures and cultures,” says Aaron De Smet in McKinsey Quarterly, speaking on the necessity of sound time management throughout a company’s internal structure.

From Forbes to the Wall Street Journal to week-long trainings and seminars, there are countless articles citing top organizational applications while managers across the country attend high-ticket conferences on, you got it: How to get organized.

Actosft’s suite of solutions helps to optimize daily performance through a wide range of functions designed to make each minute count. They were also designed to help employees reduce the amount of busy work they do so that areas like innovation, customer service, and critical thinking–oriented issues can take precedence.

Features of these two solutions include meaningful ways to tackle some of the most common communication and administrative tasks of most companies and organizations, such as:

  • Instant Visibility View your entire workload and status updates for each job, assignment, stop, or project.
  • Drag-and-Drop Dispatching Assign work simply with a drag-and-drop interface and workers will be notified with each update.
  • No Lost Paperwork Attach Wireless Forms to orders and collect job updates, inventory utilized, before and after pictures, and signatures.
  • Calendars and Scheduling Sync workforce availability with customer schedules.
  • Detailed Profiles Create detailed profiles of your customers and employees while having complete access to current workload and job history.

Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?

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06.28
2019

Summer Vacation Season and Workforce Management

Believe it or not, 2019 is already halfway over. That means business owners everywhere are beginning the processes of reviewing all the important numbers as we approach the end of Q2. As they do this, they’re also making any adjustments needed so they’re able to hit the ground running the second Q3 starts.

Kicking off Q3 with a bang can seem like a daunting task, because not only might there be huge expectations from a business point of view, but there’s also another major event taking place at the same time: the unofficial launch of the vacation season.

Just in time for schools across the country to wrap up classes, summer this year officially kicked off on June 21. With mercury levels rising, kids out of the classrooms, and parents itching to get away for some quality time with the family — not to mention vacation deals galore — this is when businesses everywhere tend to notice their teams may not be running at maximum capacity.

But running with a less-than-full staff doesn’t mean your numbers have to suffer. Vacations go hand-in-hand with operating a business. This time of year just happens to be when more people are out more frequently. So how do you go about making sure it’s business as normal all through the summer?

That’s when our software comes into play. With a proper workforce management software in place, like our flagship Encore solution, you’re able to maintain a bird’s-eye view of all the goings on at your business, no matter where you are or how many people are actively working.

Job Dispatching helps to make sure all of your work orders are being addressed in as efficient a manner as possible. Have projects mapped out well in advance and then in comes a vacation request? No problem! Reassign the work orders to team members who have the availability.

Wireless Forms helps to speed up processes whether you’re fully staffed or down to one person. Eliminating guesswork due to chicken-scratch handwriting is a huge timesaver. Decision logic helps workers zip through forms quicker than ever since the system automatically skips over sections deemed irrelevant to the job at hand. And with no need to drop off forms back at the office, “paperwork” can begin processing almost immediately.

Now, with fewer people helping to produce the same amount of work, it may be inevitable that some overtime comes into play. But with our easy-to-use Timekeeping feature, you can help to minimize the amount you’ll have to pay out. First, with GPS-based punch ins, you can make sure you aren’t paying your workers until they actually show up at a job site. Second, with on-call reporting, you can quickly review the number of hours each person has worked and assign new orders accordingly. Finally, if you do have to rely on some overtime, you can keep the peace by dispersing the work evenly.

Vacation is a necessary part of every business. Your workers do their best work when they are rested, both physically and mentally. And you’ll able to run a successful operation knowing that, thanks in part to our streamlining solution, while your hard-working team is off enjoying the fruits of their labor, it’s still business as usual on the work front.

Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?

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06.26
2019

How Small Business Is Helping the Environment

It’s easier than ever for entrepreneurs to start a business. With the low cost of setting up an LLC, creating websites, and other tools needed to market and do business, there are virtually no barriers to a new enterprise.

The one thing many of these businesspeople are doing right is cutting expenses and overhead in all the right places. Today, savvy entrepreneurs are using tools they already have to conduct business efficiently and affordably.

While larger enterprises with deeper pockets often waste money on unnecessary expenses, small businesses can’t afford to waste a penny on things like paper — especially when there are tools, like Actsoft’s Wireless Forms, that are more cost-effective and work better.

Along with eliminating paper waste, we’re seeing the small biz folks also eliminating employee waste by getting their remote workers to clock in and out from their phones and work from home. While many start-ups don’t have the budget for big offices, electric bills, and insurance, they’re employing freelance staff to work remotely — while using innovative tools to track time. This way they can keep track of hours without wasting a lot of time and money filling out paper forms.

Our software allows remote employees the ability to clock in from anywhere. All this adds up to a more environmentally friendly company that uses resources wisely and mitigates risk.

If you want to know how much you can save by cutting down on inefficient processes, call Actsoft today and we’ll do a free evaluation.

Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?

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06.14
2019

Uber Elevate and Business Innovation

Uber unveiled this week that the third test city to be added to the list of its long-anticipated “flying taxi” service will be on the other side of the globe, in Melbourne, Australia. (The first two being stateside, in Los Angeles and Dallas.) If you haven’t been following the story, the hugely popular ride-sharing company — which revolutionized the way we all think about taxi services — has long been touting its plans to take to the skies, offering users a virtually traffic-free ride experience. (As it stands, Uber is already set to whisk people to and from JFK Airport.)

The designs for the taxi, recently unveiled at the company’s annual Elevate conference, reveal what can only be described as an airplane-helicopter hybrid, with a sleek, futuristic vibe that channels everyone’s favorite space toon: the Jetsons. It’ll be at least four years before we even see this innovative new option take flight, according to Uber, but it’s still exciting to know changes like this are on the horizon.

This type of thinking — never being satisfied with the status quo — is what catapulted Uber from a “nobody” startup to a major tech leader. The company developed a genius way to completely change an industry that was virtually untouched for decades and its popularity sparked like wildfire. Where other companies may be satisfied at the rapid success, the powers that be at Uber know that real success comes from constant innovation, from always looking for ways to push their business in new directions.

In that same line of thought, our software serves as a means to help push already successful businesses forward. With our suite of solutions, we don’t purport to provide expertise in every single industry. Rather, what we do is give businesses in virtually every industry imaginable the means to vastly improve their processes. We give you a way to maximize your efficiency — through use of features such as Wireless Forms, Job Dispatching, Timekeeping, and others — in order to make the most of what you’ve already built on your own.

One of the great benefits from our solutions is their ability to help you shave precious time off each of your tasks. This saved time creates the opportunity for you to take on even more business, which helps to boost your bottom line. But in addition, some of that saved time can be devoted to ideating, crafting new ways to take your business to an entirely new level, much in the same way the folks at Uber continue to do.

We never stop working on ways to improve our software and roll out even more features that exist to help you make more money. We hope that our role in helping you simplify everyday tasks can also play a part in the greater evolution of your business.

Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?

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06.12
2019

Top Reasons to Go Paper-Free

Saving money by going paper-free can mean saving the environment.

Most companies with any kind of foot in today’s world — even if it’s a dial-up foot wearing a 10-year-old computer — knows that paper is no longer necessary. Or, at least, not as necessary as it once was. In fact, if you look at it from Earth’s point of view, it may be the opposite of necessary; it might be downright destructive.

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) states that the primary greenhouse gases (GHG) emitted by the pulp and paper manufacturing industry include carbon dioxide (CO2), methane (CH4), and nitrous oxide (N2O), all contributing factors in climate change. Basically, these GHG emissions accumulate in the air eventually warm up the climate and affect the atmosphere — in the air and on the ground — all around the world.

Because these emissions are preventable, scientists and environmental organizations are working hard to reduce emissions and educate consumers and companies. The Association for Information and Image Management (AIIM) is one of those organizations. They’re working diligently to get the word out about what a mess paper is making in our modern world. In fact, it’s estimated that approximately 300 million tons of paper produced each year, resulting in almost four billion trees cut down annually.

John Mancini, president of the Silver Spring, Maryland-based AIIM estimates that if people around the world act then 821,918 tons of paper and 10,958,904 trees could be saved. “That’s got to be worth thinking about,” says Mancini.

Going paper-free is one of the easiest and most effective ways for companies of all sizes to impact the environment in a positive way. And the benefits for your bottom line are pretty good too — many of Actsoft’s Wireless Forms users report savings of hundreds and sometimes thousands each month. From paper costs and storage to streamlining operations and ensuring paperwork is accurate and on time, these savings really add up.

So what’s in it for Mother Earth? Let’s look at some facts:

  • Major greenhouse gases can remain in the atmosphere for tens to hundreds of years after being released. They become globally mixed in the lower atmosphere, reflecting contributions from emissions sources worldwide.
  • Each year more than 20 million trees are consumed for the production of book papers and about 95 million trees are consumed for newsprint.
  • Deforestation is the source of 25 percent of human-caused greenhouse gas emissions.
  • Over 40 percent of the global industrial wood harvest is used to make paper.
  • Forests that have been cleared and allowed to regrow do not store as much carbon as an undisturbed forest. In one study in Ohio, a forest that was cleared and allowed to regrow for 70 years stored only half as much carbon as a nearby forest that had never been disturbed.

To learn more about how you can replace your paper forms with easy-to-use electronic versions that can be deployed on your smart phone or tablet, call Actsoft today. We’ve helped countless companies make the transition. Let’s get together and create a smarter planet!

Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?

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06.07
2019

Dark Phoenix and Rapid Business Growth

This weekend, comic book fans everywhere will flock to theaters to see the big-screen interpretation of beloved X-Men character Jean Grey as she descends into the chaotic, out-of-control Dark Phoenix. In the movie, the good-natured Grey finds herself unexpectedly wielding immense amounts of psychic powers that quickly compound exponentially, causing her to rapidly spiral out of control.

By now, you may be asking yourself: What the heck does any of this have to do with managing my remote workforce?

Work with me here. In the movie, Jean Grey struggles to maintain control of her powers as they expand way beyond her wildest expectations. While she always knew she was capable of great things, never before did she think her mutant abilities would grow to such levels. Because she hadn’t expected it, she never prepared for it, and so she was ill-equipped to manage it.

Similarly, when you’re running a business and you experience a burst in growth, you may find yourself struggling to keep up. The trick, of course, is to prepare yourself ahead of time. Implement the proper tools that give you the right kind of control over your business’s processes so that, if you do experience that sudden boost from out of the blue, you’re already in a good position to field the influx of necessary work to keep everything running smoothly.

That’s where our solution comes into play.

Implementing Encore into your company’s day-to-day operations gives you an additional level of control and organization, making the process of expansion — even if it comes from out of nowhere — much more manageable than if you were on your own.

Take our Job Dispatching feature. Using our software, you’re able to see the status of every available worker, including the number of work orders on their plates, as well as their current locations, whether they’re at a job site or on the road. Having access to this information, it’s much easier to make an educated decision when new work orders come in and you have to determine who to assign them to.  You can do so right in the application, without ever having to pick up the phone or require the worker to come back to the office to retrieve new assignments.

Once those work orders are disseminated to the crew, they can power through on-site paperwork faster than ever, thanks to our Wireless Forms. With such time-saving features as calculations (with no risk of math errors from trying to add things up in their heads) and decision logic (which skips over unnecessary sections or shows relevant ones based on previous responses), workers can fill these out quickly, freeing up more time to take on additional jobs. Plus, when your forms are digitized, you don’t have to worry about back-office mistakes made from misinterpreting chicken scratch handwriting or forms being lost in transit.

If your sudden business boom means you’ll be dealing with the production and/or distribution of a lot of inventory, you’ll really love Barcode Scanning. This is used in conjunction with our Wireless Forms feature and can really speed up the act of checking products in or out of the warehouse. Rather than manually count each box that comes or goes, simply scan barcodes as they are loaded or offloaded from the delivery truck. You’ll greatly reduce the risk of human error and have a much more accurate accounting of your inventory.

And of course, as you grow, so will your team. It’s inevitable. That’s when our Messaging feature comes into play. With it, you can quickly and easily send group (or individual, if need be) messages in order to make sure important updates are received by all, regardless of whether or not they’re in the office or out in the field. This helps keep everyone on the same page and, depending on the update, can also keep your workers safe.

We’ve barely begun to scratch the surface here, but one thing is for certain: Bringing Encore into your life is a surefire way to streamline your day-to-day operations so that, when the unexpected arises, you don’t spiral out of control like Jean Grey.

Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?

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05.31
2019

Form Workflows: Nailed It!

For anyone as obsessed with food and calamity as I am, there’s arguably no better way to simultaneously satiate your appetite for the duo than by watching the train wreck of a show that is “Nailed It.” If you’re unfamiliar with the premise, allow me to explain: Aspiring bakers — and I can’t stress the word “aspiring” enough here — compete against each other to recreate baked works of art that would be feats of effort for even the most skilled pâtissier.

Of course, under a time crunch, the incessant commentary and pestering from comedienne host Nicole Byer (a true gem), and a general lack of skills on the part of the contestants, there are gaffes galore. Recipes are provided, but under the pressure to finish, steps are often skipped or bakers take it upon themselves to improvise workarounds in an attempt to reach their goal within the allotted time.

The result? Cringe-worthy, gut-bustingly hilarious attempts that more often than not bear little resemblance to the original masterpiece.

While the haphazard attempts to craft these creative confections make for good TV watching, in the real-life business world, such an approach is, shall we say … ill-advised. As far as your workforce goes, it’s up to you to properly vet your talent and make sure the people on your team are experts in the things they do. Even then, mistakes can happen. But when you’re working on, say, a construction site, skipping steps can result in much more serious repercussions than can happen when you accidentally use salt instead of sugar. (Yes, that actually happened on one challenge.)

Our Form Workflows feature can be used to help make sure that your team is precisely following the steps in their tasks. Workers can fill out portions of custom-built Wireless Forms that can then be digitally forwarded to administrators for review. If not satisfied for any reason, the forms can be rejected and sent back to the worker(s) to revisit or, if everything was completed to satisfaction, they can be approved, giving the okay to advance to the next steps.

Implementing something like this improves the accountability of your team since they shouldn’t be moving on to later steps in a project without the approval of a senior, designated staff member. These types of check-ins also help to keep everyone on the team up to date with the most current status of an ongoing project. This simple process can amount to a whole lot of money saved since ostensibly you won’t find yourself forced to replicate efforts down the road when it’s discovered (too late) that a crucial step was mistakenly overlooked.

No matter your industry, there are myriad ways in which this feature can be implemented in order to help make your everyday processes flow a lot smoother. And when you increase your efficiency, you inevitably end up with more money in your pocket.

Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?

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05.29
2019

How Construction Companies Can Step Up Their Game

From contractors to field employees to the office staff, there are so many moving parts in building new homes, keeping everything straight — especially important paperwork and documents — can be a grueling and expensive task.

We’ve all been around that colleague who’s mired in stacks of papers and can never seem to find the document he or she needs. The hours spent searching for an important contract or form are valuable — so imagine doing this every day. After a month the time and money definitely add up. But even worse, what if that important contract is never found? Imagine having to ask a client to re-sign and redeliver something they already turned in. Not only is this behavior unprofessional but it can cost you big money in the future if it’s not taken care of today.

A tool like our Wireless Forms can help transform a day’s work from a total failure to an easy process that helps eliminate human error. Instead of relying on paper — which can get lost or ruined,  these digital documents allow you to send and receive your paperwork via your smartphone, tablet, or computer. You can even have your clients sign the forms electronically. It’s clear to see how much easier life is without messy, inconvenient paper.

According to Denver Transit Partners (DTP), a collaboration of several construction companies that are worked on a mass transit railway system in Denver, Wireless Forms increased efficiency exponentially. “Actsoft has trimmed a four-hour process down to an hour,” said Craig Clairmont, DTP’s construction safety manage. To see the full case study, go here.

With the construction boom on the horizon, we highly recommend using Wireless Forms to get faster, easier results all around.

To learn more about Actsoft’s Wireless Forms, call today.

(888) 732-6638 or Receive a Live Webinar

 

05.24
2019

Game of Thrones and Business Strategy

Unless you’ve been living under a rock for the last eight years, you’re at least somewhat familiar with the HBO series “Game of Thrones.” Regardless of whether you watched the medieval fantasy, it was —and continues to be — virtually impossible to avoid the seemingly constant chatter that infiltrated every form of media through the years. It almost always centered around fan theories: What was going to happen next? Who would ultimately lay claim to the prized Iron Throne? As of late, however, the conversation has taken a sharp turn as fans discussed what they liked or absolutely hated about this week’s finale.

Regardless of how you felt about the finale, if you were watching, then you undoubtedly spent the last eight years traversing the peaks and valleys of this epic adventure. You were there for the highs and the lows, the wins and the losses, and the deaths. The many, many deaths. Along the course of this journey, you may have noticed a couple of themes that went hand-in-hand with victory. While we can pretty confidently say — and we hope we’re right — that your business practices are nothing like the events that transpired in the fantastical world of Westeros, there are some takeaways from their strategies that you can carry over into your day-to-day practices … with our help and modern updates, of course.

First, the people leading the pack were always in the know. They knew where their people were. They knew where the most important landmarks were. And they knew the best routes to travel. Having this information, more often than not, was key to helping them come out on top.

With our GPS Tracking feature, we give you the insight to always be on top of the same type of information. Knowing the positions of the workers that are manning your “front lines” puts you in a much better position to win at the game of business. Having the near real-time locations of everyone in the field, plotted on a live map, gives you high ground against your competition, allowing you to quickly and easily identify the person best positioned to fall out and take on a new work order. This gives customers more incentive to give you their business since they’ll have a better idea of when they can expect service to arrive.

Second, they were able to relay messages to necessary parties much faster than anyone else. This gave them a leg up in terms of changing strategies based on evolving conditions, rather than taking the risk of entering a situation that became potentially more dangerous than they previously thought.

Now, in Westeros, this was accomplished rather precariously with ravens. We use Intra-Company Messaging, which lets you instantly send important messages to one person, or a group of people, through a secure network. So, when major changes arise that could affect schedules, priorities, or even worker safety, all necessary parties are informed at once, assuring that the whole team is on the same page. And with our method, you never have to worry about an arrow strike getting in the way of your message.

With the help of our suite of solutions — and the absence of dragons, direwolves, the Dothraki, and feudal sabotage — you’ll find yourself in a much better position to lead the charge to reign supreme in your field.

Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?

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