QuickBooks is killing your Construction business!

Jun 26, 2019 Author:Dwain Browne

Ok, that title might be a bit dramatic but hear me out! If you're currently running a construction company, chances are you are using QuickBooks. QuickBooks controls over 70% of the small business accounting space across North America, this is huge! So what's the problem? Well, for one, the world has changed a lot since QuickBooks was first developed. A quick history lesson on QuickBooks When QuickBooks started way back in the 1980s the world was very different. Desktop software was a new thing. In fact, having/using computers at all was still a new thing. After the birth of the personal

April Update Includes Drag and Drop Feature for Adding Images!

Apr 03, 2019 Author:Rebecca Kent
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Based on customer feedback, we recently launched some changes to our website platform that improve the user experience.The biggest change is to our text editor. Visually, it is more appealing, and easier to navigate. You now have more options for text editing, and adding images is now easier than ever.You are now able to drag-and-drop images into the text area, easily resize an image with a click and drag method, and it is much easier to align images.We have also enabled the user to insert videos simply by including the YouTube link.There is now a preview screen so you can view

How to Improve Efficiency in Your Skilled Trade or Construction Business

Apr 25, 2019
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What does “improving efficiency” mean? You are sitting in your office thinking “this isn’t working” or “there has to be an easier way”. You can see the gaps or bottlenecks in your business process and you recognize there is an issue, but you are struggling to find a solution. You aren’t alone. While every business owner knows what improving efficiency means, not many know how to adapt their process to actually improve their efficiency. How will improving Efficiency help my Construction business? Let’s look at what the main goals of improved efficiency are: 1. Cut costs - Lower expenses so the

Choosing the Right Software for Your Construction Company

Apr 03, 2019
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The construction industry has been a bit behind when it comes to adapting to innovative technologies. Studies show that 80% of skilled trades and construction companies are still operating their businesses using primarily manual methods. At least a part of the reluctance to update existing processes is due to a lack of knowledge; not knowing what is available, and what is right for your business. With so many types of software available, it can be overwhelming. What to look for in a software system To clarify, we are discussing software systems that are used to help with business management and processes.

Why Your Construction Business Needs to Update Its Dispatching Process

Mar 27, 2019 Author:Dwain Browne
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What is dispatching? “Dispatching” is a term used to describe the procedure of sending a technician to a job site. Every company has their own dispatching procedure, but traditionally dispatching by phone or email are the most common. On the surface this seems fine, but there are lots of issues and challenges with this process, that can create bottle necks in your business process. To better understand some of the challenges involved, let’s look at the steps involved in dispatching a tech using traditional methods. Traditional Dispatching Process What are some of the inefficiencies of traditional dispatching? Step 1: Call comes

The Challenges of Manual Scheduling in the Construction Industry

Mar 13, 2019 Author:Dwain Browne
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All through the skilled trades industry, organizations are still using manual scheduling for their employees. It might be a whiteboard, or a master appointment book, or occasionally something as advanced as a shared Google calendar or even excel, but for most skilled trades businesses, there's still someone manually tracking jobs and hours worked. Such a system is, of course, prone to errors, particularly when schedules have to change on short notice, and often require work to maintain.Error-Prone At Crucial Moments The main reason you need a schedule is to keep track of where your workers should be, and when in order

Technology Adoption is the Most Efficient Resolution to the Labour Shortages in Construction

Nov 22, 2018 Author:Dwain Browne
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I was recently thinking about the labour shortage in the skilled trades industry. (I mean, I’ve been thinking about it for a while, but I was thinking about it recently, too.)The effects of the shortage of workers are rippling through the skilled trades industry.Older, more experienced workers are retiring, and younger, more technologically savvy workers are coming in to replace them. That’s going to reshape an industry that has, traditionally, been resilient to technological innovation.Millennials are drawn to jobs that allow them to use their inherent comfort, familiarity and adeptness with technology. This is the generation that grew up during the

6 Ways to Battle the Skilled Trades Workforce Shortage

Oct 10, 2018 Author:Rebecca Kent

Canada and the United States have pulled out of the building recession and are rapidly making their way towards a building boom. Most construction firms find they're optimistic about near-term prospects, but far-thinking employers have a growing concern.A report from The Associated General Contractors of America indicates that most firms are looking to increase their payroll for the first time in a decade. However, fewer young people are choosing careers in the skilled trades, and more construction employees are opting to retire; all the warning signs are there for a looming shortage in the skilled trades industry.To a wise man, the

How Contractors can Turn Manual Business Procedures into Tech-Savy Business Processes

Oct 03, 2018 Author:Dwain Browne

Contracting companies can vary dramatically in terms of their comfort level with technology - and their use of technology in their work. Where one business uses hand-written notes & invoices, another may co-ordinate between work sites on tablets used by every employee. For many contractors, this technological advancement is a progression, that takes them from limited technology through to more sophisticated methods. This progress typically informed by the age of the business, the volume and size of projects and their employees comfort around the use of technology. Many contracting companies see this progression as an unnecessary increase in expenses, without realizing

3 Types of Scheduling Used by Contractors, Skilled Trades and Construction & What They Are Best At

Sep 27, 2018 Author:Dwain Browne
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When we talk about scheduling in the skilled trades industry, we're actually talking about several types of schedules.There's:Worker schedulingJob or project schedulingTask schedulingWhen you're looking into scheduling options, it's worth considering how it handles each of these elements.Worker SchedulingA reliable system of worker scheduling is going to need to incorporate keeping track of which workers have which skill sets, their availability, and their proximity to the job sites.In many skilled trades companies, this sort of information is tracked semi-informally by office staff, maybe with a list somewhere of people's schedules for availability. Obviously, this system can work "well enough", but it's

SnapSuite now has Chat Support!

Sep 27, 2018 Author:Rebecca Kent
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UPDATE - September 26, 2018 With the newest update, SnapSuite now offers Chat support from within the application, during regular business hours of 8am – 6pm EST.Chat support let’s our clients get fast, easy access to a member of our support team. Whatever the question and no matter the issue, we strive to provide personal, one-on-one support to SnapSuite users.Because users are logged into our platform, our support team already knows who they are and what their role in the company is, so we are able to optimize the support experience.If our agents are busy, your inquiry will be queued and

5 Ways to Keep Your Skilled Workers Without Increasing Your Payroll

Sep 19, 2018 Author:Rebecca Kent
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The current workforce shortage in the construction industry is making it more and more difficult to fill vacant positions (read more about attracting new talent here) But what about the workers you already have? We’re in a world now where the average person changes jobs ten to fifteen times during their career. The day of employees working for 1 company for forty years have passed. When this kind of frequent job transition is normal, is it possible to retain skilled workers for longer than just a few years? It’s certainly possible, so long as you give them what they’re looking for!

4 Ways to Attract Skilled Trade & Construction Workers to Your Business

Sep 19, 2018 Author:Rebecca Kent
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One part of how to fill your company's staffing needs is making sure you attract the right talent!Skilled trades are the most difficult jobs to fill in the market today. 70% of construction companies are having difficulty finding workers for their jobs. You can learn more about the current workforce shortage by downloading our whitepaper HERE. Because quality, fully trained workers are getting harder to find, It's important to use all the tools you can when you're trying to hire top talent for your business. Here are some expert tips on how to fill skilled trade jobs without expending all your

Part Two: Field Service Management Software vs Accounting Software

Jun 22, 2018 Author:Rebecca Kent
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This is a two-part article on Field Service Management (FMS) Software and Accounting Software. Read the first part that discusses Accounting Software here. In this article, we continue to discover some business solutions that can be helpful for your skilled trades business. In part 1, we reviewed Accounting Software, its features, strengths, weaknesses and limitations. Now, we will explore Field Service Management (FSM) Software. What is a Field Service Management Software? In simple terms, Field Service Management Software helps business owners manage vehicles and employees who do not work on company property. It is mostly used for service, installation, construction or

Part One: Field Service Management Software vs Accounting Software

Jun 22, 2018 Author:Rebecca Kent
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You have been running your own successful skilled trades business for years. Your processes are simple, you keep your operations small, and you can handle every aspect of the business almost single-handedly. You have procedures and systems in place that make your day-to-day operations run smoothly, as planned. Your hard work is paying off - your business is growing. But lately you have noticed something seems to be different. Your once efficient ways seem to falter and the things that were once running smoothly, don’t seem as smooth anymore. So what is happening to your previously perfect day-to-day operations? Simple: They

3 Ways to Automate your Business

Jun 21, 2018 Author:Rebecca Kent
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Anyone with a small business understands the value of time. Automation is a great way to eliminate time wasted on mundane manual tasks. The software solutions that are available in today's market can aid in automating any repeatable task, giving you more time to manage your business. Dispatching via SMS Manual dispatching usually involves multiple steps using multiple programs (CRM, Excel, Word, Outlook). This can create a very disconnected process, making it difficult to track jobs. Information is often double, or sometimes triple entered, which is not only inefficient but can lead to data entry errors. Implementing a SMS dispatching system

3 Reasons to Automate Your AR

Jun 21, 2018 Author:Rebecca Kent
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Invoicing is a critical part of your business. The process of manually creating invoices from work orders, manually sending payment reminders and tracking payments, is monotonous and time consuming.? Automation can be helpful by not only saving you time, but also reducing errors, and providing consistency.Reduce Errors in data entry Any time data is manually entered or copied, there is a greater risk of error. Depending on what system you are using for your invoicing, data can in some cases be entered 2 or 3 times increasing the likelihood of a mistake or typo. A simple typo can lead to delays

Part Two: Client Relationship Management Tools Vs. Field Service Management Software: Part Two of a Two-Part Comparison.

May 31, 2018 Author:Rebecca Kent
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This is the 2nd part of a two-part article on Field Service Management (FMS) Software and Customer Relationship Management Systems. To read the 1st part, that discusses CRM, click here. When it comes to CRM systems and Field Service Management software, it could be said that one’s weakness is the other’s strength. As discussed previously, CRM systems are capable of boosting sales thru strong customer service and relations, but a CRM's weak after-sale performance is a great concern. This is where Field Service Management Software (FSM) excels. FSM software is a business management solution that encompasses customer service, job and

Part One: Client Relationship Management Tools Vs. Field Service Management Software: Part One of a Two-Part Comparison

May 30, 2018 Author:Rebecca Kent
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Sales are the driving force behind every skilled trade business. No matter what service you offer, you need steadily increasing sales in order for your business to grow and prosper. With this in mind, you could say that a business’s success lies in the hands of the clients; without clients, there wouldn’t be any sales, and a business would not succeed. This is why companies exert tremendous effort building and maintaining client relations. Satisfying customers’ needs and creating good relationships are a top priority in hopes that it will translate to greater trust, more credibility, loyal clients and most importantly, increased

4 Ways to Manage Technicians

May 30, 2018 Author:Rebecca Kent
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Workplace productivity has been an overly used term in the corporate setting to denote the ability of an organization to accomplish work goals and deliver the desired results. It involves the people working in the company from the management to the assistants, as well as the tools, strategies, and processes to achieve productivity. The more tedious and physical work happens in the operation, where mostly field service workers and technicians are at the forefront. This is true most especially in the field service sector and skilled trade business, where productivity, is of utmost importance. Improving field technicians’ productivity can be

Growing Shortage of Skilled Workers in the Construction Industry

May 29, 2018 Author:Dwain Browne
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In a 2017 report, the Washington State Auditor found that employers in the skilled trades are having difficulty finding enough workers. According to the Associated General Contractors of America, 70% of construction companies are having difficulty finding workers for their jobs. And the US Department of Education reports that there will be 68% more job openings in infrastructure-related fields than there are people training to fill them. This lack of skilled workers in the trades already has a long history, and it's unlikely to change anytime soon. In fact, the situation is probably going to get worse, as more of the

3 Steps to a Faster Sales Process

Apr 12, 2018 Author:Rebecca Kent
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As a business, your main goal is to turn a profit. In order to do that, you must sell the product or service that you offer. Selling is what keeps your business alive. And the faster you can sell, the better it is for your business. But how do you create a faster turn-around in sales?Process is the key! Not just the ‘having a process’ but figuring out the ‘right process’; the process that is best for YOUR particular business. The right process will help increase the speed of making a sale, which, in turn, will help you reach your business

Why Chose the Cloud Over Traditional Boxed Software Solutions

Nov 01, 2017 Author:Dwain Browne
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In recent years Software as a Service (SAAS) has exploded into the mainstream. More and more companies are opting to offer their software solutions as a SAAS based model instead of traditional boxed software and licenses. Even big players in the software industry, like Adobe and QuickBooks are making the transition to the cloud. But what are the benefits for the average small to mid-sized business in opting for SAAS? Lower up-front InvestmentOften the initial licensing fee and set-up expenses for boxed software can be a huge investment, with some CRM software costing in the 10’s of thousands, sometimes even over

Save Time Dispatching by Text

Oct 25, 2017 Author:Dwain Browne
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We know that most small business owners are still using manual processes to operate and manage their business. Dispatching jobs is no exception. If you're like many small business owners, your process probably goes something like this:Sales/service call comes in and sales or admin staff answer and record the details on a piece of paper.The information is then transferred to some form of digital tool that can help you keep track of your jobs. That might be Saleforce, Accpac, QuickBooks, Sage 300 or even Excel. Once the call data is entered, it needs to be discussed or reviewed by with the

How a Quotation Tool Can Improve Consistency

Oct 25, 2017 Author:Rebecca Kent
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Part of the problem with creating quotations is the lack of consistency; Every sales rep does things a little bit differently. It can be a challenge to make sure every rep has the most up to date price list and product knowledge. Automation brings unparalleled consistency to quotation generation, which is important for a number of reasons. Reduces ErrorsYou will see a huge reduction in errors when you switch to automated document generation. Because the majority of the document is produced automatically, there is a smaller likelihood of data entry error. No more out of date pricelists as pricing information will

4 Ways a Quotation Tool Can Help Your Business

Oct 25, 2017 Author:Rebecca Kent
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Creating quotes can be a real headache. They are a monotonous, tedious, time-consuming activity that all sales staff loathe. While there are several great arguments for switching to an automated quotation tool, time is the most relevant. Here are 4 ways a quotation tool will save you time:1. Automated quotes are faster to produceYour sales staff are too valuable as customer service agents to spend time on manual quotes. Their time is better spent building and nurturing customer relationships than performing mundane data entry. Using a quotation tool means your sales staff have more time to spend selling. 2. Faster turnaround

The secret to managing your business without being in the office

Aug 25, 2017 Author:Rebecca Kent
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As a business owner, oversight and management of your company is your paramount concern. When you're out of the office, relying on email updates and phone calls doesn't provide the perspective needed to effectively manage your business. Access to real time updates, reports, and status is required to make informed decisions.That’s where business management software can help. With mobile versions available, business management software can give you hands on access to your company from home, the cottage or on the road. Realtime Job Status Using cloud based software to track ongoing jobs gives you access to job status reporting from anywhere.

Privacy Policy

Aug 25, 2017 Author:Kim Barnsdale

This privacy policy has been compiled to better serve those who are concerned with how their 'Personally Identifiable Information' (PII) is being used online. PII, as described in US privacy law and information security, is information that can be used on its own or with other information to identify, contact, or locate a single person, or to identify an individual in context. Please read our privacy policy carefully to get a clear understanding of how we collect, use, protect or otherwise handle your Personally Identifiable Information in accordance with our website. What personal information do we collect from the people

Why Your CRM is NOT Working For You

Aug 25, 2017 Author:Dwain Browne
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Your CRM is not helping you manage your business. A CRM helps you keep track of deals and leads but what about everything that comes after? Your CRM is not helping you manage your entire business. Solutions like Salesforce, Zoho and Sugar are all great at helping your sales team manage leads, communicate with clients, and even market to prospects. According to statistics, a CRM can even help you close more sales. That’s great! But what happens after the sale? Nothing, because CRM software is NOT business management software. What Your CRM Software Isn't DoingObviously, sales are an integral part of

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