Ultimately, the benefits of web tools are an increase in efficiency and productivity for your business. By combining many business practices into one tool and allowing it to be accessed anywhere, anytime, as long as there is an internet connection, web tools can provide a 360 degree view of your business, customers, clients, staff and resources.
Webtools can improve productivity in many ways:
By saving time
Use web tools to generate invoices on site at the end of a job, rather than returning to the office and emailing or faxing and invoicing from there. This can save time between completing a job and being paid, potentially improving cash flow.
Faster response to customers
Online communication tools such as feedback forms and social media channels, as well as the comment function on a blog or website, can be set up to automatically email your office or nominated account if a customer queries them. This allows you to be notified without logging on to each individual network and also allows you to see any queries instantly.
More effective scheduling
Work flow management software such as simPRO and GeoOp can allow you to more effectively schedule staff, equipment, resources and jobs through their workflow tools. These two job management systems are highly popular in the construction and electrotechnology industries, as they allow businesses to manage staff, resources, inventory and jobs scheduling in one location.
Ensuring accuracy of information
Cloud based document and file storage systems such as Box, DropBox and Google Drive allow businesses to maintain master documents, so everyone has access to the same version, all the time. This has the added benefit of only needing to enter data and documents into your system once, as you no longer require duplicates for different staff members or departments.
Reporting and accessing reports
Web tools such as Customer Relationship Management (CRM) systems can generate reports for a customer’s marketing, financial or other movements, giving you a 360 degree view of each and every customer. They can also pull reports for outstanding invoices or work, and be customised with forms unique to your business.
Working from anywhere
One of the major reasons web tools can increase efficiency is by allowing staff to work from anywhere. Without the need to download software on individual computers or devices, you simply need to give your staff a login where they can access all program files via the cloud. Instant messaging programs even allow you to check in with staff online while they are on a job site. As long as an internet source is available, your staff and yourself will be able to work from any location, with remote logins.
The following benefits can apply across all aspects of business activity:
- Estimating – generate fast, accurate quotes and estimates on the job
- Invoicing – automate invoicing, for faster payments and cash flow management
- Scheduling – having the right people in the right place at the right time
- Project management – keep projects on track from start to finish
- Purchasing and stock management – stores inventory lists that can be automatically updated in the office
- Asset maintenance
- Account integration
- Service management.