30.11
2018

Holiday Travel and Fleet Tracking

As we discussed recently, Thanksgiving is the holiday that ushers in the unofficial start to the end-of-year holiday travel season. And it’s no secret that, particularly during this exceptionally busy travel season, you can expect to pay a premium when it comes to air transportation. This year, travelers can expect to pay nearly $400 for domestic round-trip airfare, a pretty steep price to pay (especially this time of year) when budgets are stretched thin by the spirit of giving.

So it should come as no surprise that many travelers choose to seek out alternative modes of travel during the winter months, all in the name of saving money. (Not to mention, for relatively local travel, it can be a time-saver and it alleviates you of the added stress of dealing with airports when crowds are at their worst.)

Because of this, bus travel has seen a resurgence in popularity in recent years. With new, growing numbers of passengers taking to the road instead of the air, the industry quickly realized it had to adapt to a wide variety of travel preferences. This resulted in a whole slew of enhancements being made, including the addition of amenities like Wi-Fi, on-screen entertainment, satellite radio, and even meals served. Travelers can now even choose between ultra-affordable, middle-of-the-road, and luxury buses.

What does all of this mean for you, as a transportation provider? Passengers have come to expect a lot more, and they want you to deliver. Just like the airlines some now use as a backup plan, they want to know that their bus will pick them up, depart, and arrive at the intended destination on time.

Our solution means that you can keep track of every bus in your fleet, so you know exactly where each vehicle is, in near real-time. Because of the flexibility of our software and its ability to integrate with other programs, you can feed this information into tools that then relay it to your customers, keeping them as up-to-date as possible.

Additionally, during a time when congestion on the roads (particularly highways) can be at peak levels, we can help you relay alternative route suggestions to drivers that can allow them to bypass as much as possible. You’ll save on the expense from gas wasted while needlessly idling in potentially avoidable traffic and keep all those eager travelers appeased. (Trust us. Even as passengers, anxiety while stuck in bumper-to-bumper traffic is a real thing.)

Driver safety is another factor that directly impacts both your bottom line and customer satisfaction. With our tracking devices, you can keep a record of your driver’s behavior, including speeding, hard accelerating, and hard braking. Speeding puts your driver, your fleet, and your customers at risk, which can then lead to major expenses, whether from a damaged reputation or (worse) actual injuries suffered. Hard acceleration is a great way to waste gas. And hard braking is dangerous and makes your passengers uncomfortable.

If you haven’t implemented any vehicle tracking into your fleet before now, you’re doing yourself, your company, and your customers a great disservice. We can help you deliver a tremendous experience while also putting money back into your pocket. And there’s no better time to take your company to the next level than right now, as we approach one of the biggest travel times of the year.

You’ll thank us. And then your customers will thank you.

Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?

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16.11
2018

Thanksgiving, the Holidays, and Managing Your Business

It’s hard to believe, but Thanksgiving is just around the corner. With it marks the unofficial start of the holiday season. It’s a time when we all — even those of us down here in the Sunshine State — start to break out the warmer clothes as the mercury levels perpetually drop. It’s when you and your family come together to celebrate, catch up, and enjoy a plethora of hearty home-cooked meals (while dodging the uncomfortable questions about your life choices that inevitably come your way from that one distant relative you only see this time of year).

Beyond the gathering of friends and family, the roasted turkeys and hams, the piles of sugar cookies, and the exchange of gifts, there are still businesses to be run. And as a business owner, you know by now that, similar to the slew of vacation requests that come in each and every summer, this is another time when work crews tend to be working at half capacity due to all the time off requests.

What does this mean for you? Simply that, during the holiday season, you need to make some adjustments in order to allow your staff the time off they’ve earned, while keeping up with business as normal. (Not to mention, you may actually be even busier than usual, so slowing down is not an option.)

That’s where our software comes in. When you have our solutions in place, the level of efficiency you’re able to run your business at increases exponentially. How? Here are a few examples.

Wireless Forms
Ditching those cumbersome paper forms is the easiest way to save time on the job. All the information your workers need to collect from customers, including signatures and photographs, is done and sent back to the home office in near real-time, directly from the field. With only pertinent information included on the forms and no illegible handwriting to decipher, this is processed much quicker. Plus, since workers no longer have to go back to the office to turn in stacks of paper, they can easily fit more customers into their daily schedules.

Dispatching
It’s one thing to have a carefully orchestrated schedule set up ahead of time, so you can prepare your team to tackle each days’ work in a way that makes the most sense. But as we all know, the unexpected is almost always bound to pop up. Customers cancel. New customer requests come in. People call out sick. Using our dispatching feature, you can see a top-level overview of each person’s schedules, availabilities, and current locations. So when new orders need to be assigned, you’re able to send it to the right people, fitting in as many as possible.

Timekeeping
With decreased staff numbers come increased hours for the ones holding the fort. Our mobile timekeeping solution not only lets staffers make the most of their workdays by eliminating the need to stop by the office before heading to the first job site, but also by letting management review hours worked no matter where they are. This helps administrators make smarter decisions when distributing tasks so that unnecessary overtime is avoided when possible, or at least minimized when unavoidable.

These are just three of the many tools in our suite of solutions. As you can see, there’s already so much they can do to help you run a more efficient business and, in doing so, increase your bottom line. Whether your business is in peak vacation season, or it’s just another normal workweek, you’re going to get the most out of your workers the minute our software becomes a part of your daily procedure. It will allow you to approach the holiday season — and every other time of the year — with far less stress, and more confidence that it will be business as usual … always.

Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?

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07.11
2018

Where’s Waldo? Four Reasons Why Tracking Time Is Important

Most of us are familiar with the children’s book series “Where’s Waldo?” wherein the object of the game is to find the titular character hidden among a vibrant backdrop. Now, assuming Waldo is a working member of society, his penchant for getting lost begs the question, “How does that affect his employer?” If Waldo is on the clock every time he gets lost, it goes without question that he is hurting his employer’s bottom line. What are some reasons Waldo’s employer should actively track his time?

Understanding Employee Utilization and Capacity
While Waldo remains lost while clocked in at work, he is accomplishing none of his workload for that day. Without accomplishing any jobs, Waldo’s maximum capacity for work remains unable to be determined. The absence of these measurements creates difficulty for Waldo’s employers as they try to measure where their company is and if there is room for growth.

Accurately Forecasting and Benchmarking
Companies need to be able to estimate how long it will take an employee to complete a single job. With Waldo always missing on the clock, his employer cannot determine how much time he needs to complete a task. Without this estimate, Waldo’s employer is unable to establish an accurate forecast or estimate that ensures they are achieving the maximum profitability for the job.

Can I Hire?
Waldo’s shenanigans prevent his employer from knowing whether they can hire additional employees or not. If Waldo accomplishes one job during his eight-hour workday and then gets lost on the clock, his employer will maintain that he can only get one work order done a day. This may not allow the level of productivity necessary for his employer to bring on a new hire.

Reviewing Performance
With the data from Waldo’s cost as an employee, his employer can conduct an objective performance review. Without sufficient data, Waldo’s employer cannot properly navigate the waters concerning Waldo’s performance, unable to decide whether to terminate Waldo or hire an additional employee to mitigate the workload.

While Waldo’s disregard for following cardinal directions can indeed hamper a business, there exist solutions to this problem. Actsoft provides a platform that ensures Waldo’s time is effectively utilized in completing the tasks he is assigned. Timekeeping becomes simple for Waldo as it becomes available while he is operating remotely, clearing up confusion on whether or not he is at a job site while he is on the clock. Combined with a location stamp taken at the time of each time punch, Waldo’s employers are granted incredible visibility of their employee. The question, “Where’s Waldo?” is given an answer when using our solution and it is, “He’s at work.”

Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?

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17.10
2018

Encore’s New Barcode Scanning Feature is Here!

We’re proud to announce that our premier solution, Encore, has received a powerful new enhancement to its Wireless Forms feature! With barcode scanning, you can now use the cameras of your workforces’ mobile devices to scan QR codes and barcodes.

The applications of this feature are practical for virtually any company that regularly needs to fulfill checklists, manage inventory, and accurately track employee hours. By simplifying processes and eliminating the need to purchase separate barcode scanning devices, Actsoft has made it possible for your business to consolidate, and save even more resources.

Inventory Management

Experience improved efficiency when it comes to keeping track of inventory. Barcode scanning lets you scan codes to input data into a wireless form, making it easier for your team to take note of any tools that were used and successfully returned throughout the course of a workday. Standardizing the process of inventory management can help to prevent equipment loss, and it also gives your staff a unique advantage by helping them easily identify what parts need to be ordered for a job’s completion.

Timekeeping

Barcode scanning can be used in tandem with Timekeeping, and in doing so, you’re able to verify that your employees are remaining accountable whenever they clock in or out. As long as a wireless form is attached, registered time punches can be accompanied by ID code scans, helping you preserve the integrity of your staff’s timesheet data.

Proof of Work Completion

Companies in multiple different verticals can efficiently document the completion of work and daily work orders with Encore’s barcode scanning enhancement. If your organization must conduct routine inspections at close of business, barcode stickers placed at specific locations can help you verify that workers went to those positions and successfully checked them at the end of the day.

Encore’s barcode scanning tool is yet another example of how we’re constantly looking to make our solution even more practical for the everyday needs of your business. Leave behind expensive barcode scanners, timecard uncertainties, and any inefficiencies surrounding task documentation with our newest update.

Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?

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04.10
2018

Industry Spotlight: Actsoft Solutions in Professional Service

Conveying a brand of expertise is vital in the professional service industry. Professionalism must be marketed as an essential ingredient of business, particularly for companies that deal in realty, security, or insurance, as it fortifies trust, something that inevitably leads to customer loyalty.

Actsoft takes pride in developing solutions that help businesses enhance the efficiency and positive image of companies to consumers. Using our digital tools, send a message of professionalism every single time your organization interacts with clients, and organize your team’s processes with ease.

Enhancing your organization with Encore

Branding matters, regardless of what type of service your company provides. With Actsoft’s Encore solution, your professional service business can create a customized management application of its own, complete with personalized logos and hand-selected color combinations to match your company’s aesthetic. On the functionality side, Encore bridges the gaps between your remote employees’ mobile devices and your office’s desktop computers, connecting the field to headquarters seamlessly. Select only the features and modules that specifically fit your business’s needs, and direct your mobile workforce effortlessly.

Wireless Forms

With Wireless Forms, you can create custom digital versions of all of your company’s documents, and have remote employees fill them out using mobile devices. This feature simplifies the process of form completion through decision logic, which only presents relevant fields of the document to fill out, based on an employee’s previous answers. Form Workflows, a new addition to Wireless Forms also empowers your team to work together by letting specific users complete portions of a wireless form, and then send it electronically from one person to another until it’s finished. Save time, money, and resources using the power of this tool, while fostering the consistency of your brand as well.

Mobile Timekeeping

Fulfilling the needs of customers remains a high priority for any service-providing company. Mobile Timekeeping helps your remote staff reach clients quicker than ever, by allowing them to clock in directly from the field using a smartphone or tablet. Through accurate timesheets and shortened response times to customers, you can further standardize your company’s operations, help your team buy in even more to a culture of professionalism, and save money by reducing unnecessary overtime hours.

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

 

02.10
2018

Industry Spotlight: Actsoft Solutions in Field Service

Whether your field service business deals in machinery installation, commercial repair work, landscaping, or industrial servicing, the need for efficiency persists. And as employees of field service-based companies are typically supplied with tasks located away from the office, transparency between company headquarters and remote work zones is key to a job well done.

At Actsoft, we know the inconveniences that can be posed from the burden of having to manage a mobile workforce, and the diversity of the field service industry makes it a perfect fit with the power of our versatile solutions. Here’s a few of the ways that our software is able to bring extra efficiency, sharpened communication, and greater modernity to your workforce’s operations.

Staying connected

Directing in near real-time is simpler than ever with Actsoft’s solutions. Your field technicians can remain connected to headquartered administrators by using GPS Tracking, Messaging, and Job Dispatching to facilitate better communications channels, and make adjustments on the fly. Quickly disseminating directives out to your team’s various components also becomes a much easier process, once the power of mobile technology has been tapped into. Our solutions excel at integrating smartphones and tablets with the desktop computers at your home office, tying everything together digitally.

Increasing efficiency

If your field service company was given a tool for reducing wasted time, improving productivity, and holding employees more accountable all in one, what more could it accomplish? Using the features of our software packages, feel free to save your business more money and resources. Unnecessary trips to the office can be trimmed down with Timekeeping, as staff can clock in and out remotely via mobile devices. Give back more time for your employees to tend to the needs of customers in the field, and make the most out of every work day by enhancing your team’s productivity.

Powering workforces

The future landscape for mobile workforces includes an increasing reliance on technology to streamline operations. Teams that are managed using the latest in business-enhancing solutions are poised for success, savings, and tighter coordination. Let’s get to work on making your business thrive, with the capabilities of our unparalleled solutions supporting it the entire way forward.

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

 

17.08
2018

Useful Tips for Avoiding Traffic

As a regular factor for many commuters, heavy traffic can put a strain on mental health, car lifespans, and time management abilities. It can also end up costing drivers significantly more on fuel over time.

At Actsoft, we’ve realized that these negative factors of roadway congestion can hinder operations for companies with mobile workforces in particular. And while dealing with traffic is inevitable at times, there’s plenty of cases where it could’ve been avoided entirely by simply taking a better route, or getting equipped with smarter tools for planning ahead. Here’s three ways that our solutions can help businesses like yours circumvent the hassles of packed streets on a daily basis.

GPS tracking in near real-time

While traffic may be worsening in some developing areas and urban centers due to increasing amounts of cars on the road, the power of technology continues to advance. GPS tracking solutions like the ones we engineer now allow you to analyze, strategize, and optimize the daily processes of your workforce on the fly. With our GPS Tracking feature, you can see the locations of your dispersed workers, and find the most efficient ways to direct certain employees to new job sites in the field digitally. Traffic can certainly play a factor in how quickly an employee can get to a new job assignment, regardless of how far away they are. Use our applications to accurately monitor the positions of your mobile team members, and manage roadway congestion with ease.

Traffic Overlay

The toll of heavy traffic can cause your business to lose money in more ways than one. Prolonged instances of idle time accelerate vehicle wear-and-tear, stall productivity, and unnecessarily burn gasoline, making them something to consider reducing. Now, we’ve made it simpler than ever to keep vehicle idling at a minimum using our new Traffic Overlay feature.

As one of our latest enhancements to Encore, our flagship solution, Traffic Overlay gives you the ability to see near real-time traffic patterns on top of your dashboard’s live view maps. Look at which intersections or interstates have the heaviest amounts of traffic prior to sending out employees to work zones, and make smarter route decisions that will conserve more resources.

Optimize schedules

Rush hour remains one of the most constricted times of the day for traffic patterns, as commuters depart from their jobs all at once. Thankfully, our Timekeeping feature enables your remote employees to clock in and out directly from their mobile devices, eliminating any need for them to drive to the office and register time punches before starting or ending work. Get your staff to job assignments quicker, and allow them to get a head start on common rush hour traffic times using our powerful solutions.

Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?

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05.06
2018

Three Essential Tips for Improving Time Management

Time is the one of the few resources that can’t ever be gained back once it’s been spent.

This statement particularly resonates in the workplace setting, where optimized productivity and the acquisition of true efficiency are essential to success. Because abundant surpluses of wasted time can be detrimental to high motivation, ensuring that your company’s time management skills are adept is vital.

Every single second that passes by is a moment that’s filled with opportunity, and by making the most out of the time you spend in the workplace, you can even gain more out of your leisure time away from the office. It’s a reciprocal relationship, as coming back to work from a vacation recharged and refocused also can assist you with sustaining long-term productivity at work. Here’s three tips that may help you enhance the effectiveness of your time management skills.

Work smarter, not harder.

There’s a fine line between cutting corners and working efficiently. When completing daily tasks during the workday, finding ways to consolidate and multi-task, while also ensuring that each job is being done to a satisfactory level is key. Accessing the right resources from the get-go before completing a project is a surefire way to make sure that your productivity won’t suffer later on, and that your workforce will remain firing on all cylinders. If there’s a way to simplify a task without compromising on the quality of work being done, it’s usually a smart idea to do so.

Schedule accordingly.

While too much rigidity in scheduling can actually become a deterrent to improved time management, crafting a flexible outline of weekly tasks, deadlines, and meetings can help you sharpen your punctuality. This extends beyond the scope of the workplace as well. When planning a vacation, it’s wise to have some concrete, scheduled events on the itinerary, but make sure you don’t overbook. The whole point of a getaway is to relax, and stressing over getting to certain events at every hour of every day can wear thin quick. In short, plan as much as you can ahead of time, but leave some room for the unexpected.

Use tools to help you manage time and improvise better.

Technology has always been centered on making life easier, and as time progresses, our reliance on it continues to increase. With Actsoft’s solutions, your company can truly optimize its productivity, helping you save time, money, and resources. Some of our digital tools like Mobile Timekeeping and Job Dispatching can help you ensure that your mobile employees are maximizing their time while in the field. This tandem of features allows them to clock-in directly from mobile devices and receive updates about new work orders in near real-time. GPS Tracking from Actsoft also provides the ability to monitor remote employees, so you can verify your workers’ respective locations while they’re dispersed at different job sites.

Improved time management is key to optimized margins, a healthy bottom line, and ultimate customer satisfaction. With Actsoft, your workforce can enhance its productivity on an hourly basis, helping you gain the most out of each and every minute that your business is operating.

Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?

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28.08
2017

Mental Wellness in the Workplace

It’s a pretty safe bet to say that we spend a lot of time at work. Many professionals spend 40 hours a week working (some much more than that). Regardless of the amount of time you spend on the clock, stress and mental strain can be expected on the job. If that stress goes unchecked for too long, it can create serious problems for employees and organizations alike.

Deteriorating mental health isn’t a closed off issue unique to one person at a time; it affects everyone. It influences the way we work in teams, our consistency, and even our professionalism as we attempt to process the world around us. Negative mental health issues can create disastrous results for employees and the companies they work with.

In 2016, a Work and Wellbeing survey by the American Psychological Association (APA) reported that less than half of the 1501 workers surveyed felt their organization supported employee well-being and one in three reported chronic stress on the job.

Discussing matters involving what’s going on in your head is tough, it’s personal and it can be awkward. Many of your co-workers might not share the same worldviews, or deal with the same stressors you routinely encounter, so it’s no wonder why these issues are taboo in the workplace.

Some people are making strides to shed light on mental health issues on the job such as stress, depression, and feelings of isolation to help show that we all deal with them in one form or another. Madalyn Parker (a web developer from Olark Live Chat) sent shockwaves around every corner of the internet when her request for a day off for mental health went viral.

One of Madalyn’s teammates adds, “It is incredibly hard to be honest about mental health in the typical workplace. In situations like this, it is so easy to tell your teammates you are ‘not feeling well.’ Even in the safest environment, it is still uncommon to be direct about mental health issues.”

Progress aside, discussing mental health at work remains a precarious road to travel. Many employees don’t want to discuss their issues with their co-workers or their supervisors because they don’t want it used against them later. No one wants to risk damaging a relationship or compromise their standing with future employers because they are perceived a certain way due to the stigma associated with mental illness. So, people stay silent.

The thing is, even though these issues are hard to diagram at times, they have very real implications for businesses. Mental health conditions and the effects of them cost employers more than $100 billion and a staggering 217 million lost workdays every year according to findings by Harvard University Medical School.

The issues are real, whether employees are talking about them or not.

The brain is just like any other part of the body. When it deals with trauma, it, like any other muscle we have needs time to recover. Without the proper treatment, more problems will arise, sooner or later.

When it comes to stress in the workplace, it’s critically important that employees have the proper amount of time to decompress. Whether examining the duration of breaks or lunches, or running reports on an employee’s hourly work week, Actsoft provides Timekeeping functionalities that make it possible to ensure your employees don’t spend more time working than they should. Everyone needs time away from the job to get their thoughts in order and to clear their heads. With Actsoft software, you can be sure your workforce is taking the time needed to help reduce stress and keep people level headed.

Just to be clear, breaks and lunches aren’t the solutions to mental health issues. Not by a longshot. However, ensuring employees feel like it’s ok to step away from the job is a major step in the right direction. Professionals (regardless of title) need to know and understand that the job is important, but so is their mental well-being. It’s beneficial to take some time to compose yourself, and it should be encouraged to foster a healthy, productive and efficient workforce.

Have any questions on how Actsoft can help you?

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