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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05.17
2019

Aladdin and the Path to Success

More than a quarter century ago (Yikes!), audiences worldwide were introduced to Disney’s interpretation of the 18th-century story of Aladdin. The somewhat dark, yet still lighthearted (thanks to a slew of catchy tunes and a slapstick-happy Genie) tale is set to once again dazzle the big screen as part of Disney’s recent trend of reimagining its classics, using advanced technology to cast these age-old stories in an entirely new light.

Aladdin is a magical rags-to-riches tale. Most of you know the story: The title character is tasked with the mission of retrieving an enchanted (unbeknownst to him) golden lamp and, in doing so, he inadvertently releases a mystical, powerful genie who is bound to the unassuming treasure. For freeing the genie, he’s rewarded with three wishes.

With his sights set on the Sultan’s stunning, witty, and street-savvy princess, Aladdin’s first wish is to be elevated from his rather humble lifestyle and transformed into a powerful, successful prince. And the story continues on from there.

We all have our reasons to strive for excellence in the world today, whether it’s for love, like Aladdin, or something entirely different. But you don’t need the help of some magical genie to raise yourself up as you trek the path to success. You simply need a solid business idea, a foolproof plan, and the right tools to help you along the road.

Think of Encore as the genie and its suite of tools as the magic that helps your business realize its maximum potential. You’ve already done the hard work. You’ve established the foundation by launching your business, and you’ve already seen success in your field. Our solutions simply give you an easier way to take this success to the next level by helping you to affordably maximize the efficiency of your processes.

If your field workers are still carting around bulky, cumbersome paper forms to fill out at job sites, think of the benefits from making the switch to our Wireless Forms. First, you reduce the burden of keeping track of all those physical sheets, along with eliminating the cost of constantly purchasing more paper. Decision logic speeds up the filling-out process by helping workers skip unnecessary sections, and back-end processing is further sped up because there’s no waiting around for forms to be hand delivered (Poof! It’s at the office.), nor is there holdup due to confusion from illegible handwriting.

We also make it easy to set up a wide range of alerts that help keep you constantly in the loop. For example, in conjunction with Geofences (virtual boundaries that can be established around various geographic sites), you can be informed if workers are preemptively leaving job sites faster than Princess Jasmine when she hightails it out of the Sultan’s palace. This helps keep your team accountable for their whereabouts. And you can be notified should your costly equipment suddenly vacate the premises, helping to reduce instances of theft.

Speaking of theft, should equipment or vehicles go missing, installing our Fleet and Asset Tracking devices can be the simple solution that stands between a quick, full recovery of your property and you having to head to the Cave of Wonders to replace it.

While our solutions may not exactly be as fantastical as a magical genie erupting from an ancient lamp to grant wishes on demand, they do have their own transformative powers. We barely dived into the plethora of offerings we have here. But we’re standing by to help you discover just how these, and the rest of them, can help bring your business the wishes it desires.

Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?

Call (888) 732-6638 or Receive a Live Webinar

04.26
2019

Going Digital for Arbor Day

Did you realize the last Friday of every April is an oft-neglected national holiday? It’s true! While you’re not likely to ever find offices closing up shop in observance, Arbor Day is a reminder to everyone to take a moment and reflect on the important role trees play in our everyday lives, particularly in allowing us the opportunity to even exist on this planet.

Between pumping breathable air into the atmosphere, helping in water conservation efforts, preventing soil erosion, producing food, providing us with shade from the sun on a warm afternoon, and way more benefits than we could even begin to list here, we thought it imperative to take a moment to recognize this important day.

We’re so passionate about the preservation of natural resources, we built an entire business predicated largely on the idea of helping other companies reduce waste, including the unnecessary dependence on costly, environmentally damaging paper goods.

Using our Wireless Forms to replace dated, inefficient paper documents is the perfect way for you to easily play your part in contributing to forest conservation efforts. But the benefits don’t stop there. Making the switch to our digital solution also puts money in your pocket. How?

  • All that paper your crew uses for each job, and the ink used to print on it, costs money. When you eliminate the need for so much paper, you eliminate the cost associated with it.
  • With Wireless Forms, you don’t have to worry about errors due to illegibility. Mistakes can slow down back-end processing or create customer service issues, both of which needlessly chip away at your bottom line.
  • Going digital improves efficiency. Forms can be designed using decision logic, meaning you’re automatically guided along all the necessary fields you need to fill out. Plus, attach audio notes and photos for an extra level of detail, and you’re done faster (and more accurately) than ever before, leaving you more time to earn more by taking on additional work.
  • Take advantage of our Barcode Scanning feature and your forms can be used to proficiently track the arrival and departure of inventory. By significantly reducing the potential for human error, you also minimize the risk of lost or unaccounted-for product, which costs you money to replace.

So as you look for ways to improve your business processes, use this day intended to celebrate all that trees give to us, and make the decision to become a more environmentally conscious company while simultaneously seeing an increase your bottom line.

Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?

Call (888) 732-6638 or Receive a Live Webinar

04.03
2019

April Fools’ Day

Hopefully, no one got you too good this year. The unofficial holiday of pranksters passed with the shift of the calendar from March to April. Sometimes pranks are fun, like in this list Forbes put together to celebrate the day. Other times — not so much.

As fun as the spaghetti incident from that Forbes article may have been, with pranks there is the potential for an Orson Welles–style scaring. We’re sure the percentage of people who were fooled by Welles’ radio hoax didn’t appreciate the ruse then nearly as much as the rest of us who know of it today. Being deceived isn’t always a laughing matter, but that holds even truer when money is on the line.

A company with a fleet of vehicles certainly can’t afford to be deceived by what’s happening in the field. While Orson Welles’ radio performance of “War of the Worlds” may have caused panic among some of his listeners, the ramifications for a business can be much more costly. As we learned from Jeff Boone of Napa Auto Parts in Louisiana, a large fleet can waste as much as $20,000 a year in gas by idling. You can’t let yourself get fooled into wasting that much money.

When it comes to your business, a sure way to guard against being caught off guard is by having clear visibility into your company. With Actsoft, we can offer management the ability to track a fleet of vehicles with precision. It allows companies to plan the optimal routes for drivers and monitor vehicles on a map via GPS. Businesses can receive scheduled reports that let you know if users spend too much time idling, constantly go off route, clock in or out at undesired times, and if drivers are speeding. Knowing these metrics streamlines the efficiency of your business’s fleet.

A little prank here or there isn’t the worst thing in the world; no Martians have landed in New Jersey. However, it’s imperative to know exactly what is happening behind the scenes of your business or else risk being bamboozled by your bottom line, which is no laughing matter. Make sure your company is making the most of each day and running as efficiently as possible.

Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?

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03.26
2019

The Importance of Efficiency

Running a business these days is tough. With employees in and out of the office and resources to keep track of, there are a lot of moving parts in any industry. It’s important to stay on top of what’s going on inside and outside the office.

Being off by just a few facts here or there can snowball on a company. In one of our case studies, Jeff Boone and Paul Headley of Napa Auto Parts in Louisiana shared his experience with “the little things.” Headley said that the gas wasted in two minutes of idling equates to about the amount of gas from a mile of driving for their vehicles. Reducing that amount of wasted gas with Actsoft’s solutions reduced the store’s fuel usage by 10 percent, or about $20,000 a year as Boone estimated.

The numbers for each business will vary by size, how many vehicles there are, and other factors. The key is to eliminate the little things so they don’t balloon into bigger issues. When a car is left running money is sent straight out the exhaust pipe. But idling is not the only issue we’ve seen with companies. Time management is a big issue especially when companies work in collaboration with others, have to accommodate customers, and rely on information exchanged between the office and field.

Championing time management is a huge accomplishment of Actsoft. The Denver Transit Partners (DTP), a collaboration of several construction companies that came together on a mass transit railway system in Denver, had as many as 45 different paper forms to get through the day. Forms were filled out onsite, sent to the proper offices, reviewed, and finally sent back to the field just for a simple order to be executed. The DTP also had to keep track of the hours many different employees worked, which can be problematic in such a large operation. The construction managers of DTP started using Wireless Forms and one of the safety managers, Craig Clairmont, said using these forms saved about three hours of paper processing a day. Gathering all the needed information was streamlined for them and can do the same for many other businesses.

Even if Actsoft’s solutions can only save a business a few dollars here and there, it makes sense to try and take advantage of what you can as a business manager. It’s never an easy decision to make a change, but you can see what others have had to say about Actsoft in our case study library and in our video library. Accuracy matters in running a business, so make sure you know exactly what you need to run your business effectively.

Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?

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03.13
2019

Daylight Savings Time

For most of us, our clocks jumped ahead an hour this past weekend. For anyone who may have been awake in the extremely early hours Sunday morning, they entered the Twilight Zone that comes about when the (digital) clock jumps from 1:59 to 3:00 a second later. Technically we all lost an hour from our weekend, so hopefully the most was made with the 47-hour, two-day break from the work week.

Daylight Savings Time was implemented in the United States in 1918, though it took until the 1970s before the majority of the country, except for Arizona, accepted the practice. One of the initial ideas for DST was to “create” more sunlight after work in the summer when the days are longer here in the Northern Hemisphere. The drawback is there’s less daylight after work during the winter when the amount of sunlight during a day is shorter.

You can’t control the amount of time throughout the course of the day or control how much light a day has. Each day has 24 hours and roughly 12 hours of sunlight. DST, however, has shown us that you can manipulate the time in the day to work for you. In a similar way, with Actsoft, businesses have found ways to save precious hours and take full advantage of the workday.

“Actsoft has trimmed a four-hour process down to an hour,” said Craig Clairmount, construction safety manager of Denver Transit Partners’ Eagle P3 Project. “Before switching to Actsoft, data was unreliable. We were struggling to understand exactly what was coming in.”

In the past data transfer lagged because DTP was collaborating with multiple companies. Meeting the aggressive deadlines the collaborative set was difficult due to how long it took to gather and compile data. DTP had 45 different paper forms floating around in the field, but with Actsoft the procedure was streamlined by combining the forms onto one device using Wireless Forms.

You can’t control the length of the day, but you can take control of how the hours are used. We would like to know: What would your company be able to do with three extra hours per day?

Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?

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02.27
2019

6 Ways to Build a Successful Business

Contrary to popular belief, creating a successful business doesn’t happen overnight; it takes time and effort to build and then maintain success. In today’s business world, having time is a luxury that most people, including owners, don’t have. So how does a growing business thrive, survive, and become successful in a world where there’s so little time? Easy. Success is built over time. It may take a few years, or even a decade, to reach the pinnacle of successfulness, but it’s all worth it in the end. To succeed in business today, you need to be flexible, and have good planning and organizational skills. Many people start a business thinking that they’ll turn on their computers or open their doors and start making money, only to find it is much more difficult than they thought.

Here, six easy ways to help build the successful business that you’ve always wanted.

Understand your Brand
Know your brand more than your logo. By knowing your brand, you will know what you do and how you do it. You’ll even know what your customer interactions are like, and what type of information you should share on your social media channels. The concept of a brand extends far beyond just your company logo. It includes your business’s core values and every interaction you have with customers and suppliers. In effect, your brand creates and maintains your reputation and so reflects your customers’ experiences with your organization.

Stand Out
What makes you stand out from your competition? Standing out means that you have to find a different means to make your product more irresistible than your competitors. Once you figure out what sets your products apart from the competitors, weave your differentiators into your company’s marketing messages.

Marketing
Your marketing material should connect to the needs of your audience. You’ll want to develop and determine your niche, so that you can know who you are marketing to. It is critical that you know who your audience is so you can determine the best way to reach them. Some products and services are geared toward a wide audience, while others target a more specific market. You need to know as much about your audience as possible.

Have Great Products and Service
Word of mouth is often a great lead generator for getting more sales. Having top-notch products and services that people can talk about is a critical part of your brand. Refine your product, test it out, and then refine some more. Be sure to always put developing your product first, not the money.

Respond to Pain Points
Think about the struggles and challenges your customers face. Every successful business has products or services that respond to a customer’s biggest and most important needs. Our suite of solutions, for example, addresses the pain points of companies that manage mobile employees. We provide companies with the ability to send out recurring work orders, email notifications, manage timesheets, execute workflows, and much more. Since we know our customers, we’re able to build products that make it easy for them to manage their mobile employees. Make sure you know what problems your customers face most, so your products will be needed.

Communicating the Brand Values to Employees
Many companies fail to spread their brand’s way of thinking. The soul of the company may be totally clear to the founder, but that doesn’t mean it’s clear to the employees. Remember that your branding isn’t only for management, but everyone who is a part of the company should be able to understand and communicate the branding.

Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?

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02.26
2019

Feature Study: Wireless Forms on Encore

Encore’s Wireless Forms feature is among one of our solution’s most practical tools for companies of any size, and the benefits of implementing it reach far beyond just increased convenience. As a wide-ranging feature that helps businesses like yours save both time and money, Wireless Forms makes mobile workforces more efficient through decision logic, reduced errors, and smarter usage of resources.

Decision logic

With decision logic, you’re able to build custom digital versions of all your organization’s documents, and guide employees through the form completion process with ease. Instead of presenting fields to fill out that are irrelevant, decision logic only displays required fields based on the previous answers of those who are filling out the form. By eliminating irrelevancy from the mix when it comes to submitting documents, this feature of Wireless Forms helps to speed up operations.

Reduce errors

Issues with form data accuracy can prove to be costly, especially when it comes to tasks like taking inventory. Illegible handwriting or miscalculated totals both pose problems to efficiency by requiring extra time to fix, and in digitizing your paper forms, errors like these can be largely reduced. Wireless Forms can also be set up to calculate totals automatically whenever numbers are entered into certain portions of a form, saving time while keeping documents accurate.

Save money

By lowering the amount of paper your company uses, Wireless Forms on Encore can help your organization save revenue in multiple areas. Transportation costs for delivering paper forms back to the office often cause more damage to company budgets than administrators may realize, and a reduction in expenses from storing and using paper also helps to conserve extra revenue for your business.

Wireless Forms is just one of the many business tools that Encore includes in its robust package of features. Start saving your company time and money by going paperless today.

Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?

Call (888) 732-6638 or Receive a Live Webinar

 

02.19
2019

Baseball Spring Training and Vehicle Tracking on Truck Day

What do you associate with spring? Punxsutawney Phil? Daylight Savings Time? Warmer weather? Maybe the thought of spring coming should be associated with fleets of trucks headed south.

Truck Day is the day Major League Baseball teams load up their equipment and other player essentials on trucks to head for spring training. For teams, these spring training homes are in Florida for some and Arizona for others. As you can imagine it’s a long way from Boston to Ft. Myers, Florida, or Cleveland to Goodyear, Arizona.

These drivers have the responsibility of transporting a major league organization’s equipment safely and in a timely manner. Baseball players and managers can have the smallest mishap revert them from a 30-year-old man to a 12-year-old. Seriously. It’s ideal to make the driver’s job as easy as possible to save everyone from a player or manager tirade.

Drivers are familiar with pre-trip inspections for safety, but imagine how much easier his job would be if he could do a pre- and post-trip check of the baseball equipment, too. 300 tubs of sunflower seeds? Check. 100 ash bats and 75 maple bats? Check. Keeping the skipper happy? Check.

Whether checking vehicle equipment for safety or going through a rundown of the baseball equipment, the driver’s checklist is simplified with Actsoft. A list of what drivers need to check before and after the journey can be loaded to a mobile device. These lists can contain fields that require photos of the equipment and driver signature to ensure a thorough inspection.

Wireless Forms is the ideal solution for ensuring the equipment makes it intact. A team would have the ability to make it necessary for drivers to take pictures before and after the trip. This would make it so that it’s known by each team the status of the equipment upon arrival at spring training.

Another way to ensure the equipment gets to the spring training site is with a solution like GPS Tracking that makes it easy to manage everything. Our solutions make tracking the trucks simple, alerts management of poor driving habits, and can improve efficiency to the point that reduces the amount of fuel needed for the journey. The team doesn’t need to wonder if the equipment will get to the park on time or if there will be any surprise costs for the trip. Instead, management knows the status of the truck throughout the entire trip.

Baseball, warmer weather, and sunshine are great indicators of spring. Truck Day is what truly kicks it all off and it’s essential that everything gets to its destination on time and securely.

Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?

Call (888) 732-6638 or Receive a Live Webinar