Business owners all over the world will tell you when asked, “what is your biggest commodity”, will 9 times out of 10 respond with “time”. So why do so many people waste time doing cumbersome tasks the longest way possible. People tend to forget we’re in the age of the smartphone, everything is accessible at the click of a button, or the swipe of a touch screen more aptly put nowadays.
Service businesses the most so, if you asked any tradesman what their most time consuming, boring and generally mind numbing task(s) were/was, I would wager a bet they’d come back with some kind of administration work. Timekeeping, scheduling in work, working out costs and everything in between that isn’t “building things/making things work”.
So automation by definition is exactly what most businesses would want, reducing human intervention (the business owner) to a minimum, allowing them to spend their valuable time making and earning money for themselves and their business. So why do so many businesses avoid automation?
Knowing more than my fair share of tradesmen, I know most of them won’t want to do what they don’t know, especially when it comes to technology, quite a few of them being absolute technophobes outside of the typical WhatsApp, SMS, phone calls and the occasional selfie. Starting to use a new piece of software with little-to-no technical experience can be a daunting task for anyone, but when your business is then reliant on that software, it becomes a very different beast.
What can non-tech savvy people do?
So what can people who are potentially less tech savvy like tradesmen do to automate, there are a tonne of softwares out there that walk you through the process. Having used and tested quite a few, FieldPulse comes up trumps for design, ease of use and communication/support, but there are very many others out there that are also useful for certain situations. FieldPulse is a strong allrounder specifically for tradesmen due to the features of their app, whereas something very use case like Toggl being time tracking only wouldn’t be as useful an allrounder.
Regardless of who is looking to automate and what you’re looking to do it with/for, be very critical about what you’re using in terms of software/hardware as you’ll likely use it for a long time. Home automation is one thing, walking in and asking for the lights on when all of a sudden you’re hit with a blast of Ellie Goulding’s previous hit, but when it’s your business you must be very careful. Use the trials offered, ask for extended trials if needed (most reputable software companies will do so if you’re a good potential customer) and get the most out of them, really put them to work in your business in a real case environment.
To close, automation is the future, not just in the tech and startups space but also in the vastly technophobic field of tradesmen and contractors. Don’t waste unwarranted time chasing up invoices, giving estimates, tracking your employees and everything akin when you can do it all with one of the very many different apps available on the market. Stop sweating the small stuff and start spending your time growing your business into the empire you deserve!