Business has changed in a multitude of ways over the last 20 years. Unfortunately, a lot of offices haven’t changed their workflows in that same span of time. If you describe your business processes as “a ton of paperwork,” then you are working too hard. The modern company or small business depends on accuracy, speed, and flexibility when it comes to getting the job done. Part of that comes from streamlining work processes, which can save time over the course of an average work week. Look at it this way: if you saved one minute out of every hour in a work year, at the end of the year you’d have an extra 34 hours and 45 minutes. That’s like a one-week vacation! Our custom software development services help municipalities, schools, factories, and more by reducing the time it takes for repetitive processes. Here are a few solutions you should consider if you are looking for more time in your year:
1. Get Rid of Hand-Written Paper Forms with Custom Software
If your business uses handwritten forms, you are already wasting time. Handwriting forms and turning them in for data entry is inefficient at best, and an avenue for errors at worst.
But what happens to a handwritten form on its journey into computer input? Depending on your system, it could be handled by more than one employee. Each one will likely have to contend with other job duties while handling that form. There is an increased margin of error every time someone has to decipher handwriting, answer the phone, or contend with an interruption while inputting information into a computer.
Every time you have a handwritten form, you introduce a level of error. The more times you have to type the information in from the form to a system, you are multiplying that error potential times two. We have helped some companies that had to do data entry as often as three times from a single hand-written form. If you only put in wrong information 5% of the time, by the time you get to the end of that chain, you have multiplied your potential for error up to 20%.
If the accuracy, collection, and retention of your data is important, you need to eliminate as much risk for error as possible. Use an iPad or a cheap Android tablet to take in customer information. Even better, put the form on a secure website so they can fill it all out before they come in.
2. Don’t Repeat Yourself to Shorten Your Work Week
Some companies have great software and data input processes but have to enter it into three or more different systems. Repeated entry of data into separate systems can result in inaccuracies that can slow or even stop the flow of work. We can write middleware that will connect information across all of your systems. Imagine how much time it would save if every time you typed in a specific product number it would appear correctly across your whole system?
Making different systems talk to one another can speed up production, eliminate errors, and give your workers more time during the day to do more important things.
3. Migrate Out-Dated Software to the Cloud
Sometimes a company has outdated software running on an outdated machine. Consider the wait time on a slow machine when you are looking to save time in your office. Computers running outdated software are vulnerable to malware and viruses, making it doubly dangerous to your data. In the mid-to-late 90s, a lot of office automation used Microsoft Access applications. These required installing software on a specific machine which was often networked with other machines to share data.
Now those machines and programs are becoming obsolete and open to attacks from many vectors. We can re-write old Access database applications into web-based programs that are accessible from anywhere on the internet. You no longer have to keep the old machine that (cross your fingers) runs the program. We can build your Access database program as a web app that is secure, backed up daily, and completely future-proof. We can even add more features while we are at it since your business has surely changed since 1994.
Turning Minutes into Hours and Profits with Automation
What would happen if your employees were free to be creative and productive? The ultimate goal of this kind of automation isn’t to put anyone out of a job. Instead, it can free your staff from doing menial tasks, like checking for typos multiple times. You can give them the freedom to provide excellent customer service or develop the next big idea. Like a good investment should, productive automation will earn returns year after year. If you think any of these solutions may streamline the work for your company, give us a call. Lieberman Technologies can visit you to discuss your business needs and give you some free insight into where you can trim some fat and turn it into profits.