Smartphones, their cameras and clever phone apps are propelling small business owners into a new world of opportunity, challenge and change.
Smartphone cameras are fast becoming a must have tool for small business. Especially when linked to field service apps. These cameras are providing invaluable proof of service evidence as well as supporting field diagnostics and troubleshooting.
ServiceM8 CEO Kim Ford said “A year ago our clients were taking less than one photo for every two jobs. Our clients are now averaging two photos for every job and the trend is to take even more.”
“Small businesses are becoming very innovative at using camera phones and smart job management apps to streamline their business processes. ” he said
For example one client uses photos as verifiable completion certificates. The photo is remarkable because the smartphone app embeds the latitude, longitude, job details and purchase order number onto the photo when it is taken. This visual representation of the completed job is then stored and emailed to the customer. The benefits of such a system are enormous to small business in terms of process, professionalism and risk mitigation.
Others are using job embedded photos to share field issues amongst all employees. This is proving invaluable for complex issues that surround an otherwise routine job. The business expert can review photos and direct the completion of the complex situation without having to remain for routine segments.
Job embedded photos also allow inexperienced employees training opportunities in a managed way, reducing the risk of that inexperience impacting on profitability or quality of service.
“We are in a new era of cost and competitive pressures, increased regulation and greater business responsibility” said Mr Ford. Small business must use technology like the smartphone and its inbuilt camera in order to protect and build their business. When coupled with the right phone app this powerful combination can boost productivity and help drive better business processes. A must for every small business today” he concluded.