Paperwork is fraught with hidden costs. We don’t think much about it. With everything else you deal with on a daily basis, who in their right mind would? But the costs are real.
A study by a technology firm in the Midwest found that a typical landscaping business loses $17,000 per year, per employee – from not completing their work orders thoroughly. How does this loss happen? Every business knows that paperwork sometimes comes back incomplete, illegible or not at all. Then, some poor soul at the office has to interpret that paperwork and enter it into a computer. This second layer of data entry adds more risk with transposed numbers, missed data, etc.
Monsters plaguing your business aren't always so obvious (source)*
So where’s the silver lining? Mobile business apps are one way to start addressing these costs.
Compliance with paperwork poses a huge risk – think safety checks at the nuclear reactor, or before your worker cleans the windows on a 50 story building. What’s easier to do thoroughly: Filling out pages of a safety inspection by hand or pulling out a mobile device and quickly reviewing that checklist?
Worse, what happens when you can’t find those old safety inspections? Perhaps you have a yearly review of your inspections. You go through your files, only to find two or three inspections missing. They could be in the wrong file. Perhaps they never came back to the office. You have no idea, and worse, have no other copy of that information. You then have to spend hours looking for that document, costing you hours of work. This isn’t just a headache for your business, but could also hurt your reputation.
Paper forms also put your revenue at risk. We all know the contractor who comes to fix the thermostat on the A/C when it’s 90 degrees outside. Just as you begin to feel cool air, they mention the condenser is leaking.
You roll your eyes: the guy is looking to make a quick buck. Is he? If he has his smart phone, he can show you pictures of that leaking condenser. Now not only do you have his word, but visual proof to help you make an informed decision. Mobile apps allow you to capture a wider range information that help your clients with their decision making, helping drive more revenue for your business.
You hate to give away your labor and materials for free, but you do all the time. You quickly fill out a handwritten invoice, and round up time on a project, short-cut detailing the materials used on a project, etc. It doesn’t seem like much at the time. Still, it quickly adds up over several jobs and you wonder why your expenses are creeping closer to your revenues.
Mobile business apps can dramatically improve invoice detailing with menus of materials at your fingertips, labor types handy and all the calculations automatically tallied. Mobile business apps can make sure you bill for every last nail, bottle of nail polish and begonia.
See our article on 5 Reasons Why You Should Embrace Business Apps
*Attribution: This photo was created by epSos.de Attribution here