Human error is a realistic worry when it comes to managing business operations. According to research by IBM, businesses waste 5.3 hours per employee due to inefficient processes.
The research also showed that 91 percent of chief executive officers (CEOs) surveyed said they needed to restructure the way their organization''s work.
Building service contractors (BSCs) are finding software technology to be the solution to performance and client interaction, starting from the original bid to contract renewal.
Customize Surveys And Estimates
There is a fine line between turning a profit and making a proposal with a competitive price.
BSCs are successfully walking that line with the help of software technology.
Manually gathering information is time-consuming and usually results in lost or forgotten information.
Incomplete information can have a huge bearing on price, and an inaccurate price can lose a bid or, even more importantly, result in charging less than what it costs to perform a service.
Software technology empowers BSCs to gather as much information and detail needed directly onsite.
Companies can use online surveys to gather and save measurements and metrics of a building and then use that data to create a price and estimate for services to be performed at a specific location.
To unleash the full potential of building surveys, service providers are asking questions and listening to potential clients rather than focusing on making the sale.
This allows the service provider to gather more data and later create a proposal that shows how their services can match the needs of that potential client.
Mark Moninger with St. Moritz Building Services relates, "Communication is so important in our industry, especially for larger companies. As we grow, [software technology] gives us the ability to offer personal attention to all of our customers."
With a customized price and proposal, BSCs are providing a more personalized experience for their clients and creating the chance to win more business.
Enhance Bid Presentations
Whether janitorial professionals want to highlight their prestige, reliability or customer service, they can use software to position themselves above the competition — even if the competition has the lower price.
Samantha Snider of Procare Cleaning Services describes the new value created when she implemented software technology into ProCare''s bid proposals and quality control program: "We initially saw an immediate difference in our proposal process. Clients trusted us much faster because we didn''t just talk about our quality control program and show them what an inspection sheet might look like and so forth. We actually could jump on our PDA and show that this is a live, working, breathing animal and show them how it works."
Not only was Snider able to gain new customers with software technology, she was also able to break into a new market.
"We were able to break into the medical industry," Snider said. "I was able to go in and say, ''Look, I haven''t done medical before; however, look at this — this is here for you.'' It''s much easier to come by trust when they can see that we, as a company, are putting our money where our mouth is and taking the time to follow through with our quality control."
Once a new account is won, it is important to be able to follow through with expectations set during the original proposal.
With software technology, it is possible to keep a clear viewpoint for management and clients.
There is software available for workloading, scheduling, inspections, tracking and pretty much anything to meet each individual company''s needs.
The difference is how companies are using this software technology to improve quality control and communication.
Shawn Jones from Dale Rogers Training Center shares what has helped his company find success: "While true productivity is up to the workforce, [software technology] makes it much easier to maintain clear expectations and goals on all sides. With the scheduling feature, our employees always know when something needs to be done … Customer satisfaction has increased by 75-80 percent."
To be competitive, cleaning companies need to really cut costs and improve productivity.
Tasks and collaboration are accomplished quicker and more efficiently through software technology, and it is only getting better and faster as time continues.
Implementing a new way to manage operations may intimidate some, but once a contract is up for renewal, the benefits from streamlined management and instant communication will truly come to light to both you and your customers.
Advance Client Relationships
Business owners are not only using software technology to open new doors with potential clients and performance; they are also using it to reach new possibilities with current customers.
Audra Moorehead with Aetna Building Services describes how Aetna improved client relationships with their quality control software by stating, "We won a $1.5 million contract from a client with whom we had a previously small relationship. We had serviced their smaller offices and our contract came up for renewal. To this point, we had attempted but had been unable to win the larger offices. When we showed them [software technology] and how our communication would be enhanced, they not only renewed their current contracts, but awarded us their larger remote offices as well."
If it becomes cumbersome for a customer to contact their service provider through phone or a log book, cleaning companies might not receive valuable information from customers.
When a competitor visits the customer, the competitor asks for all of the unresolved complaints, blows the complaints out of proportion and steals the customer.
It comes back to giving more personal attention to find complaints before the competition.
Face-to-face interaction is the best way to give personal attention, but companies cannot afford to give face-to-face time with each customer.
Software technology makes it simpler to satisfy customers.
Customers have constant face-to-face interaction with computers and mobile devices.
The software technology your customers use can be used to teach company branding, messaging and your image.
Technology makes it possible to send branded surveys and mass e-mails, so feedback can be requested, documented and automatically escalated to those responsible.
That education and consistent branding will help customers to remember their contracted cleaner and what they do for them.
It is the shield against competition.
BSCs worldwide are using software technology to pinpoint which accounts need immediate attention.
Through online inspections and reports, BSCs and facility managers can oversee all accounts to accurately know where they stand with each customer.
Software technology stores all client feedback and data in one place and makes it possible to resolve concerns before a competitor even has time to unearth them.
No matter the size of the company, business owners are finding success in using software technology for new business, productivity and client retention.
By this point in the game, if you are not incorporating software technology into your services, you are slowly falling behind.
Search for solutions, talk to peers and find a software technology company that you can trust to help you through implementation and promoting your brand.
You do not need to be controlled by quality and business processes.
Unleash the power of software technology to make your business work for you.
Mike Jenkins is president of CleanTelligent, a web-based quality control software program from CleanBrain Software Inc. that is trusted by BSCs worldwide. CleanTelligent automates efficiency and profitability so that janitorial companies can focus on what is most important with peace of mind. As president of CleanTelligent, Jenkins is internationally known as an educator and consultant in the software and service industry. He is a noted subject matter expert on quality, revenue, retention and productivity. He can be reached at Michael.Jenkins@CleanTelligent.com. To learn more, visit www.CleanTelligent.com or call (877) 272-4648.