31.05
2018

Actsoft’s Applications in the Shipping Industry

Two things that constantly hang in the balance of success for a shipping company’s daily operations are the quality of the goods they’re transporting, and the timeliness with which they’re delivered to a destination. Transportation companies today choose to make keeping both of these things optimized a priority, and many leverage them as positive differentiators between their services and those of their competitors to gain advantages in the marketplace. In addition to attracting and retaining business, heightened efforts to ensure that products arrive on time and in excellent condition also save shipping companies time and money by paying significant dividends back into their bottom lines.

To help transportation businesses find these sought-after optimizations, Actsoft’s solutions are there to provide an extra measure of insight for company administrators regarding their business’s daily operations. Key features that we support including Wireless Forms, Electronic Logging Devices (ELD), and GPS Tracking allow shipping companies to fine-tune the various facets of their respective workforces for efficiency, security, and savings.

Wireless Forms

Using Wireless Forms, workers of shipping businesses can digitally transmit back important data from the field to their company’s headquarters nearly instantly. Records of completed orders that are filled out by remote employees via mobile devices eliminate the need for paper forms, and simplify business. As non-digital documents can be easily lost, costly to print from an annual perspective, and lengthier to process, our Wireless Forms tool has monumental influence on increasing virtually any company’s operational efficiency.

ELD

Powered by VisTracks, Actsoft’s ELD solution can provide transportation companies with increased stability by taking much of the guesswork out of their drivers’ jobs. As a capable application that’s fully certified by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA), our ELD solution helps employees verify that they’re staying in compliance with Hours-of-Service (HoS) mandates, as established by the FMCSA through automated driver data recording. Fines resulting from errors in manually-logged information can end up costing shipping businesses thousands of dollars, and when equipped with a powerful tool like ours to help mobile workers attain higher levels of consistency, companies can avoid as many of these fees as possible.

GPS Tracking

GPS Tracking from Actsoft can help shipping companies keep tabs on their mobile drivers in near real-time, and make sure that their transit networks are operating in fashions that are safe, secure, and expedited. Fuel-efficient routes can also be planned out using this feature, which help businesses implement some of the most standardized and budget-conscious methods possible when it comes to moving goods.

Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?

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24.05
2018

5 Must-Visit Theme Parks Perfect for Family Vacations

With Memorial Day weekend upon us, now is the time of year when families begin to pack up their suitcases and take to the road for their annual vacations. And really, this is the ideal time for it. The weather is at its best, the kids are out of school, and most seasonal destinations are finally open and ready for business.

More specifically, it’s during this time that our favorite type of summertime venue opens up nationwide: theme parks. What better way to bond with your family than a trip to some fantastical wonderland replete with thrill-inducing rides, games galore, and all the indulgent food you could dream of?

From a business perspective, with summer getaways comes the issue of coverage, since so many people regularly request to be away from work during this time period. Of course, vacations are extremely important for the betterment of any employee, but you still have a business to run. So how do you manage your workload with just a fraction of your crew?

That’s where our software comes into play. It’s an ideal means of keeping track of who is available at any given time. With the Timekeeping feature, it’s easy to see what workers are clocked in at a glance, so delivering work orders in advance is simple and can be done without question. For last-minute requests that may come in from your customers, simply track which employees are actively on duty at the moment and dispatch assignments according to availability. Or, if you’re at capacity for the day, you can easily manage your customer’s expectations and schedule them at the soonest time possible. And, if your team is responsible for keeping valuable equipment and/or vehicles at home, our asset and fleet tracking capabilities can give you peace of mind while folks are out of town.

Now that you can rest a little easier as vacation season begins, we wanted to share some of our favorite theme parks from across the country. Each one is delivers something different and unique to satisfy any family’s taste.

Cedar Point
Where: Sandusky, Ohio
Who It’s For: Thrill seekers with an affinity for roller coasters
Season: May–October
The self-proclaimed “roller coaster capital of the world,” Cedar Point isn’t just giving lip service with that moniker. The 364-acre theme park is home to a whopping 18 coasters of various intensities, making it a bucket-list destination for any enthusiast.
Don’t Miss: Though it’s over in a flash — 17 seconds to be exact — don’t forgo the high-speed Top Thrill Dragster. The ride launches with instant force, quickly climbing to, and almost immediately dropping from, a height of 420 feet, reaching a speed of 120 mph.

Dollywood Splash Country
Where: Pigeon Forge, Tennessee
Who It’s For: Anyone looking to cool down
Season: May–September
Whether you want to lounge around poolside after a morning of excitement at the adjacent Dollywood (think: more traditional theme park), or want to keep up with the thrills by going on one of the plunging waterslides, this is the place to go for respite from the intense summer heat.
Don’t Miss: Tennessee’s first and only water coaster, RiverRush seats up to four guests on a single float and carries you along nearly 1,200 feet of track, through dark tunnels, hairpin turns, and steep drops.

Santa’s Village
Where: Jefferson, New Hampshire
Who It’s For: Families whose love for Christmas is year round
Season: May–October
Tucked away in a tiny town in northern New Hampshire’s White Mountains, this is a prime theme park for parents with younger children wanting to get a taste of what it’s like to visit Santa’s home at the North Pole.
Don’t Miss: Little ones will love the opportunity to chat with the one and only Rudolph, Santa’s lead reindeer. This furry animatronic has been a staple at the park for more than 25 years and can actually carry on full conversations. (Or, if you’d prefer the real thing, swing by Reindeer Rendezvous and hand feed live animals.)

LEGOLAND
Where: Winter Haven, Florida
Who It’s For: Lovers of the classic build-it-yourself toys
Season: All year
What child — or, let’s be honest, adult — isn’t a fan of LEGO? At this sprawling 150-acre park, the beloved building blocks come to life through a series of LEGO-themed rides, activities, and even larger-than-life characters roaming the grounds.
Don’t Miss: Want to see what can be done with 32 million LEGO bricks? Stroll through Miniland USA to see giant recreations of famous U.S. destinations, like New York City, Las Vegas, and Kennedy Space Center. There’s even an homage to the classic Star Wars film series, including a replica of the Millennium Falcon.

Hersheypark
Where: Hershey, Pennsylvania
Who It’s For: Chocoholics
Season: March–January
What better way to satisfy your sweet tooth than an entire park built around everyone’s favorite childhood candy supplier? Of course, chocolate can be found around every corner but you’ll also find all the staple rides you’d expect at any theme park.
Don’t Miss: Learn all about the company that is the reason this theme park even exists. Hershey’s Chocolate World is right next door and explores all things chocolate, including the process of transferring cocoa beans into the tasty treats we all know and love. You can even create your own candy bar!

Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?

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14.05
2018

How Missed Workflow Steps Affect Your Bottom Line

What happens when a logistical connection between a company’s administrative team and its mobile workforce is broken during the course of a job’s progress?

Usually, smaller instances of communicative disconnect like this between management and employees result in nothing but mere inconveniences to the deadline of a project. However, missed steps in workflows can add up insurmountably over time, and ones that occur at especially non-ideal times can end up wreaking havoc on a job’s timeline and long-term goals.

Actsoft engineers smart solutions designed to help businesses with a mobile workforce alleviate many of the common pain points associated with effectively managing dispersed teams and assets. Our powerful tools aid in fostering intertwined, contemporary workforces that are ultra-connected and communicate well internally.

Jeffrey Gatt, Actsoft’s chief financial officer, knows firsthand the positive impacts that strong communication paths and improved collaboration can have on the success of an organization’s budget and various objectives. The implications of making both of these a business priority can save companies time and money in crucial situations.

“Any time you have efficiencies and standardizations in process, you can’t help but improve a bottom line,” said Gatt. “When you collaborate, you’re bringing in multiple viewpoints, and gaining valuable ideas from different areas.”

The kaleidoscope of applications that Actsoft creates can help businesses achieve these protocols that actively assist in optimizing workforce productivity. Aspects of our solutions like Wireless Forms remove paper from the equation when it comes to the completion and submission of work documents, helping to prevent discrepancies with information flows. Form Workflows is one of the latest enhancements to Wireless Forms, and is a powerful new feature that enables team members to work more closely together on filling out digital documents via seamless wireless handoffs.

Don’t let breaks in communication negatively affect your business’s bottom line and time management. Allow Actsoft to help your company create harmonious internal connectivity, reduce instances of missed workflows, and meet operational objectives today.

Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?

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11.05
2018

Making the Most of Your Ice Cream Truck Business

Summer is almost upon us! For those of you unfortunate souls living up north, we know how trying (and seemingly never-ending) this past winter was, so we can imagine the jubilation you all feel now that you’ve had the opportunity to thaw out, since Mother Nature finally deemed it time to grace you all with a steady stream of beloved warm weather.

As the mercury rises, so returns all the familiar sights and sounds that we look forward to every year after Jack Frost is sent packing. Birdsong greets you everywhere you go. The scent of blossoming flowers is virtually unrelenting. Rolling swaths of greens are filled with sunbathers, eager to soak up some vitamin D. And that persistent chime — you know the one — spills out of slowly roving ice cream trucks, beckoning passersby, urging them to splurge on a refreshingly icy treat.

Running a successful ice cream truck business is a bit different than selling the same product from a brick and mortar location. When faced with a drought in the customer department, you have the luxury of closing up shop and changing locales at the drop of a dime; it’s quite the advantage over immobile spots that must remain fully dependent on a single location.

A school might be a hot spot to stay perched outside of (especially when classes let out), but that same spot is probably not as likely to do so well on the weekends since class is typically out of session. Conversely, a densely populated park may seem like a no-brainer, but for any number of reasons, it’s not; maybe your park pick is actually a major fitness destination, making sugar-filled treats less likely to be enticing to its patrons.

Having the ability to track your sweet-eat fleet’s whereabouts can be a serious advantage, one that empowers you to monetize a business like this as much as possible. Imagine being able to have definitive data detailing exactly where each truck set up shop for the day and then being able to compare it to the number of sales that were made. Using the breadcrumb-trail feature, you can follow these types of patterns, which can lead to better instruction given to your drivers — like vetoing a location that never quite seems to do well.

Additionally, you can make sure the drivers you entrusted with your livelihood are actually worthy of that trust. The same tracking feature that keeps your staff accountable, helping to guarantee that they are always at approved coordinates, also gives you the ability to make sure your mobile freezers aren’t being used for personal business on the side.

Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?

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08.05
2018

International Port Cities and Global Trade

Trade networks across the globe play an instrumental role in the continuous upkeep of the world’s economy.

They’re the superhighways of international exchange, and the collective spinal cord of global commerce. Every single day, millions of goods travel along these networks to provide populations with vital resources. The port cities serving as funnels for the mass distribution of goods take in these extraordinary amounts of supplies via airplane or boat, and then redirect them to specific locations through effective transport via roads and streets. Without all of these parts of world trade seamlessly coalescing, many of the things we constantly have at our disposal wouldn’t be available.

Some of the globe’s most prevalent port cities like Sydney, London, Singapore, and Miami also stimulate continued economic growth of the world’s economy by having become highly developed in terms of service-providing. The advent of digital banking and the internet have allowed for glistening, futuristic skylines to emerge from the ground up at many of these type of port cities, enabling them to serve as global hubs for information storage as well.

Businesses that frequently operate in port cities and shipping alike can use Actsoft’s software to upgrade the potency and efficiency of their daily workflows. Enhanced communication and better teamwork can follow as a result of implementing a smarter answer to fluidize daily operations, and we’re here to help your business find that solution.

Form Workflows and GPS Tracking are two features of our flagship solution Encore that can help facilitate improved communications, greater transparency, and bolstered productivity in workforces, particularly those that operate in transportation. If a shipping company needs to submit an important document back to the office quickly regarding an order, Form Workflows is an Ultimate-tier level feature of Encore that can bring multiple employees into the fold when it comes to completing and submitting the form. This helps the document get completed quicker and with a higher grade of accuracy. Hosted on a digital interface, nearly instant transmissions of the order form between employees keeps operations smooth, and gives back valuable extra time to shipping companies and manufacturers alike.

GPS Tracking keeps company administrators informed of the whereabouts and activities of their mobile employees, including speeds traveled and a variety of different alerts regarding the status of company vehicles. With GPS Tracking on Encore, along with the rest of our solutions’ end-to-end capabilities, businesses in transportation and international trade can embrace a new era of simplified but powerful logistics.

Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?

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30.04
2018

Welding: A Trade That’s Becoming More Valuable Than Ever

Welding is a profession that makes everything from wrought-iron fencing to skyscraper infrastructure possible, and in today’s ever-modernizing world, it couldn’t be more important. The process of transforming raw metals into specialized objects is a fascinating one to watch, and with torches often times reaching temperatures in excess of 5,000 degrees when heating up metals, welding requires a unique skillset of close attention to detail and prolonged stamina.

Within the realm of manufacturing, welding as a trade has grown and developed significantly. The scope of sectors that this valuable profession now has a part in is wide-ranging. Construction, modern art, aviation and aerospace technologies are just a few of the industries that rely on skilled welders for different aspects of their respective operations, making it a trade that’s certainly booming in the 21st century.

Machinery’s rise has given further fuel to the trade of metal-working’s explosive growth, and as mechanical power becomes increasingly commonplace, the demand for skilled welders continues to skyrocket. At Actsoft, we understand the importance of manufacturing and welding jobs to the world’s economy of today. As a result, we’ve taken steps to design cutting-edge applications that can assist in facilitating ideal operations for businesses in these spheres.

Welding can be a dangerous job, with torches heating metal to thousands of degrees and showers of scalding hot sparks frequently peppering the work zones of employees. GPS and Asset Tracking alike let companies in this line of work know exactly where their remote employees are in near real-time, leaving no emergency situation to chance. Any expensive or potentially dangerous work equipment belonging to a company is also able to be closely monitored using Asset Tracking and geofencing within our suite of solutions. Trucks that are stocked with valuable equipment can cost tens of thousands of dollars to replace, and if they’re constantly being monitored for unapproved activities, administrative teams in welding and manufacturing can enjoy true peace of mind when it comes to managing the placement of their business assets.

Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?

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27.04
2018

The Woes of Remote Management & How to Remedy Them

Though it seems a lifetime ago, we really don’t have to look too far back to remember a time when the traditional workweek was considered Monday through Friday, from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. Of course there were always exceptions to the rule, depending on the industry and demands, but that was long held to be the standard. (I mean, c’mon, there was even a song written about it.)

But over the years, that standard workweek (and subsequently the workday itself) has continued to evolve and transform into a more fluid, amorphous entity, so to speak. More flexibility was introduced to accommodate individuals’ personal situations. One of the biggest — and increasingly more popular and rapidly adopted — changes is the concept of remote employment and, by proxy, remote management.

Once upon a time, this type of arrangement was only found sporadically, in special situations; but today, thanks in part to all the advancements in digital communications, it is becoming de rigueur. It’s not unusual for businesses to be almost exclusively staffed by work-from-home employees who may not even live in the same state (or country) as the company headquarters.

There are so many benefits to this type of business model: Employers can cast a wider net when it comes to staffing the best, brightest people for the job; office-space rentals are smaller since they don’t need to be large enough to accommodate everyone; the customer base, for services requiring in-person visits, isn’t restricted to just locals; and so much more!

With those perks, however, come some challenges. How does a business owner, or even a manager, keep a staff in line when they’re never around each other or, quite possibly, they’ve never met in person? Who’s to say a remote worker is doing what they should be doing, for sure? Are they making the most of their time?

That’s where we come into play.

Actsoft’s robust suite of tools was designed for exactly this purpose. Whether all of your employees are local but spend the bulk of their days on the go, or you staff remote workers in distant regions around the country or world, we’ve got your back.

Fleet Tracking One of the bigger industries where remotely working is the norm, naturally, is in the trucking industry. Back in the day, truckers were depended upon to accurately report their hours and distances traveled in paper logs. Today, those paper logs no longer suffice; everything must be digital. We partnered with VisTracks to provide state-of-the-art ELD tracking of hours to make sure your long-haul drivers are keeping compliant with the law and therefore not costing you needless dollars in fines. Couple that with our fleet-tracking devices and, just as easily as if you were sitting in the passenger seat, you can follow your drivers’ routes, safe-driving practices, and vehicle idling, among other things.

GPS Tracking This is particularly helpful when you have employees who are not only remote, but also work in the field. With our service tracking staff members, you can always be certain they’re actually with the right client/at the proper location when they say they are, for how long they say. This keeps your team honest about their schedules, and also comes in handy when dealing with any potential customer service issues down the road.

Wireless Forms Dealing with paper forms is a hassle no matter what, never mind when the forms being filled out are hundreds of miles from the office. Relying on hard copies, especially with remote staff, is the easiest way to introduce unnecessary delays and errors into your everyday work. Going digital, you eliminate that problematic wait period and instead, all of your formerly-paper forms make their way home instantly. Plus, with our latest Form Workflows option, colleagues across the country can seamlessly collaborate on the same project, quickly passing a single document between each other as needed.

Mobile Timekeeping We’d all like to think that every person on our team, remote or otherwise, is completely trustworthy. Unfortunately, that’s not always the case. (Plus, sometimes honest mistakes happen.) Merging GPS tracking with mobile timekeeping capabilities lets you know exactly where your employees are when they punch in; so you know your staff is at a job site, rather than en route, and you’re only paying people for time they actually spend working.

With those four features alone, managing a remote staff of any size or proximity becomes that much easier. And that’s just scratching the surface of what Actsoft and its array of services can do to help your business reach a new, more efficient state.

Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?

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19.04
2018

Coachella: Festival Production and Behind-the-Scenes Prep

Every year, thousands of music fans don their elaborate bespoke flower crowns and haute hippie dresses, fire up their selfie sticks, and flock to the Empire Polo Club in Indio, California, for one of the biggest festivals of its kind: Coachella.

The see-and-be-seen carnival of melodic performances began taking over this once-sleepy town in the Colorado Desert nearly 20 years ago. For two weekends every April, concertgoers are treated to back-to-back concerts spread across a half dozen stages, showcasing everything from pop to hip hop to EDM and beyond.

In 2017, roughly 250,000 people joined in on the spectacle. By the end of the weekend, at least that many will have attended this year’s, thanks to the draw from big names like Beyonce, Eminem, Jamiroquai, and Post Malone, among others.

Pulling off such a lavish festival takes an extraordinary amount of planning leading up to the event, plus a ton of work behind the scenes. And as long as everything goes according to plan, no one in attendance is even aware of, or deigns to think about, any of this production work. And that’s because, with proper procedures carefully laid out and an established flow of tasks lined up to be completed in proper sequence, you stand a much larger chance of executing the job without a hitch. (Or, with as few as possible.)

When it comes to complicated situations that involve the input and support of multiple individuals, a dedicated system for managing your workforce is essential. As a company owner or team leader, it’s impossible to keep your eyes on each member of your staff every step of the way. (And, frankly, it’s beyond inefficient.) But having access to specialized tools, like the ones that Actsoft provides, gives management instant at-a-glance insight into exactly where their staff is physically, what they have done/are doing, and even (with the latest Form Workflows feature) a series of checks and balances to assure that things are done properly before projects are advanced to the next stage.

Fleet Tracking keeps tabs on all your costly vehicles, so you can always see their whereabouts, as well as keep up with regular maintenance needs. And Asset Tracking provides the same tracking capabilities for any equipment that may prove to be an easy target for thieves. As far as functionality, that’s just the tip of the iceberg for what Actsoft can do for your company.

You don’t have to be in charge of coordinating a Coachella-sized event to reap the benefits from Actsoft’s tools. Big or small, particularly when the work is remote, our tools can streamline most of your processes, saving time and money, and relieving an immeasurable amount of stress.

And hey, who knows? Maybe your next project will be the catalyst that brings about the next generation of Coachella-like events. Start small, plan big, right? Using our software could help take you there.

Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?

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