“The cloud” is a term that we are hearing more and more of now days. I’ve used it in the title of this article because it’s a phrase that grabs attention. I wonder how many people actually know what is meant by “the cloud”. So before I go any further let’s clear this one up. “The cloud” is actually just another name for the internet. So now that we’re all clear on what “the cloud” is, we could change the title of this article to “How to use the internet to improve your business”.
Recent advances in technology have dramatically changed the way that we live our lives. Think about all of the things that you can do now using the internet. Watch tv, talk to people on the other side of the world, do your banking, book concert tickets, book a flight. There are some really fantastic things that we can do with the cloud that improve our personal lives, but what about business. How can we use the cloud to improve our business life.
One area that we can look at is our use of paper in our business. Now don’t get me wrong I’m not against books or trying to ban paper but there are some problems that can arise when using paper to run your business.
When I first came across this cartoon I thought it was pretty funny and it does a great job of illustrating how out of control things can get when using paper to run a business. But when you stop and think, it’s not that funny because for a lot of businesses this is a reality. The problems caused when a business isn’t on top of paperwork are numerous.
I come across trade businesses with these problems all of the time. Duplication is a big issue because most of the information written on a piece of paper needs to be entered somewhere else like your accounting or payroll systems. Slow invoicing is another common problem which I see a lot of as a result of using paper based systems which of course affects cash flow too. So how can we use the cloud to address these “paper problems” in our business.
SmartJobs is a cloud based job management program for tradies that replaces paper and enables a business to work completely electronically. Paper job cards are replaced with an electronic version via a mobile app. Your paper diary is replaced with an Outlook style calendar for booking and scheduling jobs. Invoicing and quoting is greatly simplified because of direct access to supplier price books and timesheets. Your map book is replaced with Google maps so that you always know how to get to the next job. All of these operational processes which have traditionally been managed with paper can be replaced with an electronic version.
The benefit you’ll see from using the cloud and a system like SmartJobs to replace your paper based processes is that you remove the bottleneck in your business. That bottleneck being paperwork. Once you do this the business will start to work more efficiently, which generates more profit and enables the business to grow.
So to summarize, advances in technology and the cloud have changed the way that we live our lives. Whether you look at using SmartJobs or another electronic system is your choice, but I encourage you to have a look around at the technology that’s available and use it to improve your business!
You can find out more about SmartJobs and replacing paper in your business by visiting www.smartjobsapp.com
Curtis Bailey - CEO and founder of SmartJobs