3 Ways Paper is Drastically Driving Up Labor Costs That Mobile Forms Fix
By: Shannon Corgan, WorkMax Marketing Director
You already know the Top 10 Paper Forms Challenges because you live and breathe them every day and you know that you’re sacrificing the accuracy that you want with paper forms, but have you sat down to think about how Paper is affecting your labor costs? Here are three ways you’re driving up your labor costs by continuing to use paper forms instead of mobile forms:
Wasted Time Distributing Paper Forms – When you get a paper form back in the office, more than one employee needs access to the information. This requires additional work to get the right forms and documentation to the right people in your company. This involves scanning the paper form into a digital format and naming the file. Your office staff has to set up a good way of organizing the forms by the employee that submitted the form, by form name, by the client name, or by job location. When you’re saving these digital forms, you really only have one way to organize and find them. Additionally, if there were any photos, sketches, or videos taken that support the paper form, all of those have to be saved and carefully named to hope you can find them if you ever need them in the future. Once your office employee has the digital form with all of the supporting documentation, he/she has to remember which project managers, safety officers, accounting employees, and management staff he/she needs to email the information. If you have 40 service workers that complete 8 work orders per day, it would take your office worker about 3 minutes to scan the paper form, save it, name all the files, and email it with all of the supporting photos, videos, and sketches. If your office worker’s hourly rate is $15 per hour, this manual process is costing you $62,500 per year. WorkMax mobile FORMS, you can capture and embed all the photos, videos, and sketches in your mobile form. There are no separate photos or video files to save and name. As soon as the mobile form is completed and synced, it can be set up in advance to send particular forms to all the right people inside and outside of your company automatically. If you ever need to find a form at a later date to send, it is easy to find the form based on any of the fields that are on the form. You can find it by the employee that completed it, the date they completed it, the project name or location, or the form name using all of the criteria to find it instantly. The possibilities are endless. All the photos, videos, or sketches are embedded in the mobile form, so you have everything you need and to easily distribute completed forms today or 10 years from today.
Time Delays – Managing a mobile workforce and collecting all of the critical business information to run your business can be quite a challenge. First, you have to make sure you have enough paper copies of the forms at all of your remote work locations to ensure that the employees are providing you what you need. If you don’t have a job trailer at each job location with a printer, that means that someone has to deliver all the forms to all of the job locations. In addition, once the forms are completed, one of your supervisors has to collect all the forms and return them to the home office or each of the employees are adding time to their time cards driving the forms to the home office. It’s surprising how quickly the cost could add up. If you had each of your 40 mobile employees going out of their way to drive paper forms to the home office with an extra 30 minutes of labor time once a week at an hourly rate of $20 per hour, you’re driving up your labor costs by $20,800 annually with paper. Imagine if you had your employees driving to your office every day to pick up their work orders rather than driving directly to the customer’s location when it’s closer to their home. By using paper for your daily progress reports, you could also be driving up your labor costs. If daily progress reports aren’t getting back to the home office until late in the day, you could be paying premiums to add additional labor to the job for the next day to keep your project on schedule. WorkMax mobile FORMS eliminates any time delays getting information back to the office. The mobile forms are submitted in real time from any mobile device from anywhere and at any time. Your mobile forms have the most up-to-date fields to collect all the data on the forms. This means you no longer have employees delivering paper forms to the job locations. The supervisors and employees don’t need to drive to the office to turn in their completed forms or pick up their work orders.
Extra Labor Hours Documenting Photos, Photo Markups, and Videos – When you have your mobile employees documenting the status of their projects, it’s always helpful to capture photos with the ability to mark them up or videos to show the work that they’ve done. When you’re completing progress reports or work orders, your employees fill out the paper form and take pictures and videos. They can’t mark up the photos without printing them out, marking them up and scanning the photo with markups into a digital file. At times file sizes of the photos or videos can be too large to email or send via text messaging. When this occurs, the employee has to go to the office and connect their camera or mobile smartphone to a computer to download the images.The pictures and videos have to then be organized by each project, name them and date them. If they are using cameras in the field, they have to download the photos onto a computer and manually send them to the office with descriptions. All of these steps to provide the best documentation to your customers, but all these manual steps add more labor hours to your budget. The paper forms and photos are separate files and to see what’s really going on in the field, you have to open each individual file. If your employees don’t stay on top of organizing this data in a timely manner, you could have missing photos and videos or photos and videos saved to the wrong projects. It’s a lot of extra time for your field staff and your office staff to manage the process. If you paid an office employee $15/hour and she spent two hours a week organizing all the photos and videos and associating them with the right projects from all the forms and photos sent from the field, it may only cost you $1,560 per year. But when you look at the one hour per week that your 40 field employees with an hourly rate of $20 could be spending either in the office downloading the images and photos and videos because they couldn’t email them, you are wasting $41,600 in labor costs. This doesn’t even include the labor hours for the time these employees have to commute to the office to download the photos or videos. This $41,600 labor cost could be eliminated with mobile forms and allow your employees to be doing more billable work. With WorkMax mobile FORMS, there is no need for all of these extra steps. WorkMax mobile FORMS embed the photos with markups and videos as part of the work order or daily progress report forms to automatically organize everything for you. You can see all of the work orders with all the detailed photos with markup and video documentation you need to easily find what you need. WorkMax mobile FORMS allows you to find all of your forms by form type, project name or number, by location, or work order type. If the fields are in your forms, you can do a global search by any criteria to find what you need quickly to reduce your labor hours.
To learn more about WorkMax mobile FORMS, view our video or see a demo-on-demand video now!