Monday, 23 December 2013

Don't be frustrated, be ready!

Workplace frustration can get to the best of us. When faced with a lack of sources, difficulty accessing critical information and inability to make effective searches, employees often become  frustrated. This in turn leads to a lack of engagement and low workplace productivity.

Providing your employees with the right tools to access the information and resources they need is absolutely essential to ensuring that your workforce remains high-performing and motivated. More importantly, having the right information allows your employees to unleash their creativity and strategic thinking, which can have a net benefit result for your business. 

Recent statistics show that nearly one third of employees consider that they do not have the right tools, resources and information to be able to successfully do their job. Put the right tools in your employees' hands today and help them contribute more to your company. There are a number of simple things you can do to avoid employee frustration. 

Tools for task completion

Your employees deserve easy, real-time access to data and analytics, anywhere and at any time. The ability to get remote access of company data can allow your employees to develop strategies, review and evaluate tactics and offer insights on your business. The right programs and software infrastructure provide the latest information relevant to your company, saving your employees both time and effort in conducting inefficient searches. The less time your employees waste trying to locate the right information, the more time they have to dedicate to productive tasks that profit your business. This results in higher performance, and can take away much of the frustration associated with the lack of information. 

Looking for the right tools for your employees? Check out our business intelligence dashboards

Bottom-up accountability

Frustration is contagious, and can spread throughout your organisation, causing workplace conflicts and health and safety hazards. Allow your employees to air their concerns and raise issues about what they consider to be lacking in their current work environment. Regardless of whether they are entry-level or part of senior management, each employee should be held accountable for their performance at work.

Providing the processes for employees to identify the source of their frustration can be a good opportunity for the business to remove some barriers to productivity and raise employee satisfaction. While many businesses face increasingly tight budgets, finding ways for your workforce to perform more productively is critical to your bottom line.

Honest conversations

Do not let annual performance reviews be the only time your employees communicate with management about their job. Developing appropriate and effective communication strategies across all levels of your company can lift employee engagement and help them realise and evaluate the role they play in the business. Management should continue to have regular and frank conversations with employees that clarify expectations, set goals and priorities, and address any concerns and issues raised by all parties. 

Achieve your employees' full potential by giving them the right tools and strategies in the first quarter o 2014. We have a range of software options by inspHire to  provide you with the latest and most relevant data for your business to succeed. Don't settle for an under-performing or equipped workforce. Empower your employees with intuitive 20/20 dashboards. 

If you are ready to take your business to the next level in 2014, contact us today!

Tuesday, 17 December 2013

The Secret history of your machinery

According to the US Bureau of Economic Analysis, the average age of a company's machinery and equipment that is currently in operation in the US is close to 20 years. This is double what it used to be in 1980.

In Australia, the case is no different. Equipment maintenance and upgrade has been a topic seldom discussed or considered in day-to-day business decision-making. With the manufacturing sector facing increasing difficulties in the current business environment, Australian companies are putting off equipment upgrades and investing less in equipment and machinery. This has two major implications for your business' productivity and profitability. 

Ageing Assets 

Even the best of equipment and machinery will experience a degree of deterioration over time. The productivity of your machinery will decrease with age. This might result in more downtime for your business, with all the costs associated with planned and unplanned maintenance. Increased production costs means lesser profit margins, which can bear serious consequences for the success of your business. 

Fortunately, this problem could be easily managed through a tracking software that keeps tabs on your equipment maintenance over time. This would allow each plant with the necessary programs installed to stay up-to-date with maintenance schedules for key machinery and operational assets. 

Many companies that tried to cut costs by not setting up the right programs for maintenance tracking have paid the price later on, as they struggle to manually keep track of their machinery's condition. 

Secondly, ageing equipment will often fail at the first sign of of increased manufacturing activity when the business takes a turn for the better. An increase in manufacturing volume can put the capacity of your company's older equipment to test and seriously shorten the lifespan of your existing equipment. 

The older the equipment, the more obvious its degradation and flaws. This may have a trickle effect on your business, preventing your employees from operating effectively, causing delays in your manufacturing processes and increasing customer dissatisfaction. To keep machinery costs low and profit margins high, it is important that companies ensure their equipment is appropriately maintained and have in place a system to track and monitor maintenance and upkeep processes to ensure that everything runs smoothly. 

A proactive future

Moving forward, Australian companies will need to get proactive about their machinery maintenance and upkeep. Keeping ageing equipment in good shape and optimum condition requires your investment in the right software system to monitor machinery maintenance and extend your equipment's lifespan. 

inspHire’s rental software can help you reevaluate your maintenance and upkeep programs, and devise an overall maintenance strategy and execution plan for the future. Having an overarching maintenance strategy in place, your business can keep up your productivity, and remain competitive in difficult economic conditions. It also means that any future purchases of machinery can be effectively integrated into the business processes so you truly get value for money for your investment. 

Contact us today to learn how inspHire rental software can help your company track asset maintenance!

Sunday, 15 December 2013

Do you know how much your business equipment really costs you?

Do you know how much your business equipment really costs you?

We are not talking simply about the costs listed on colourful, glossy brochures, accompanied by professional photos and snappy advertising, but the costs associated with the reality of owning your equipment. Many companies discover once they've taken the plunge and invested in new equipment that the real costs of ownership can quickly add up. When a business has invested in heavy machinery or high tech equipment only to be faced with higher-than-expected costs, it can have serious consequences for the business’ budget and profitability.  

Unpleasant surprises

The worst kind of surprises are those involving business costs you did not anticipate. The various expenses for your rental fleet may include regular maintenance, repair, storage and transportation. Managing these costs can be a mammoth task filled with unpleasant surprises, which can have serious consequences for your company's operations.

Do you have a system set up to keep you updated and avoid unpleasant surprises? With the right software system, you can stay in the loop with upcoming equipment-related expenses such as maintenance fees, out-of-service notifications and "lost opportunity" costs alerts. 

Hidden costs

Many businesses fail to take into account the hiding costs of their equipment when making business decisions or balancing their annual budget. The expenses associated with depreciation, obsolescence and compliance can add up without you noticing.

Do you know if you own obsolete assets? How compliant is your business equipment with local regulations and industry standards? How much does it cost to train employees to use your equipment? And what are the expenses associated with disposing of your asset at the end of its lifecycle?

With the right software and information management system, you can track and report these items of costs and have the information available at your fingertips when you make business decisions. Knowing how much your equipment is really costing you will keep you well-informed and give you an edge over your competitors.

Budget better for your business today and give yourself more certainty over business costs. Contact inspHire today for your software solutions to track and manage your equipment costs.

Wednesday, 11 December 2013

Make the right decision using your business dashboard

To make the right decisions, you need the right data. More importantly, you need to be able to access that data in a fast, accurate, cost effective way. With the increasing prevalence of cloud and mobile technology, businesses are processing and accessing data in real time and using it in innovative ways.

Being able to access data and critical business information is only part of the story. Your company needs to be able to store information and display it in a simple, user-friendly and accessible way. Dashboards are an effective tool for this end. Having an effective dashboard can help your business operate and grow to its full potential. With the right software, your business dashboard can expand and adapt to your business growth, creating a positive impact on everyone from managers, employees to customers receiving your service.

Going mobile

Mobile technology allows your business to operate truly from anywhere, at any time. Its user-friendly, convenient and readily accessible features allow you to get the information you need whenever you need it.

As mobile technology develops, many spreadsheets, presentations and communication programs previously only available on PCs are now going mobile and offering the same level of quality on all your devices. Adopting this shift towards mobile accessibility will equip your company to make the right choices more quickly.

Changing with the times

Dashboards have evolved from a few basic keystrokes and mouse clicks to the modern day fully functioning touchscreen that can accompany you everywhere. As dashboards continue to evolve, hardware is becoming less and less relevant.

Features like language assistant allow your programs to recognise, process and act on the nuances of your voice. With the ability to access information on-the-go more readily and easily, virtual assistants can help you organise information for your searches and support you in your daily decision-making. There will no longer be a need to click the “help” button. To save time and take multitasking to a new level, just say the word and your wish is your software’s command.

Up in the air

Cloud technology is increasingly used in various industries to help businesses operate more efficiently, generate profits and create customer satisfaction. For your dashboard - the command centre of your business data - cloud computing has been a game changer.

A key feature of a good dashboard is its ability to stay connected at all times and present the latest, most up-to-date information. Cloud and mobile technology free you from being tied to your desk and computer hardware, and give you access to your data from anywhere, at any time, and on any device. While you cannot physically see the cloud as you see your computer hardware, you can access your dashboard and be assured of the real-time results it delivers with the aid of cloud technology.

A panoramic view

A limited dashboard restricts your view of data. Some less powerful software offers only a small selection of options and probabilities, and provides you with only one or a few KPIs. This makes it difficult for you to contextualise your information in the bigger pictures and get a panoramic view of how your business is operating.

To see your information in a way that helps you make the right, well-informed decisions, you need a dashboard with a large interface capable of loading data from different sources. This helps you to visualise how different areas of your business work with each other and impact on each other’s performance, so that you have the complete picture to come to the right decision.

The optimum company dashboard might include the following special datasets:
  • News feeds
  • Social feeds
  • Diagnostic sources
  • Other departmental data
As the user, you have the flexibility to set up your dashboard to show only real-time data that is relevant to your needs. For optimum time efficiency, it is important to avoid clutter on your dashboard and the need to shift through unnecessary information. Better can be better, an expansive dashboard should still be one that is streamlined and adapted to specific business needs.

Our solution for you

For your company to continue to grow and succeed, you need to be able to make full use of the business data and information available to you. An effective, well-designed dashboard can provide support to your employees and customers in innovative ways. InspHire rental software provides you with a fast and intelligent information management strategy so that you have the support you need for your business in real-time.

Contact us today to learn more about our offers. Don’t forget to subscribe to our blog for the latest in software solutions.

Sunday, 8 December 2013

Tips for running your business

Regardless of your company’s sector, size, goals or any other factors, certain principles of best practice are universal to business management. Adhering to these best practices should keep your business operating smoothly and in a good position to achieve your planned milestones. 

Invest in your people 

A well-run company is a team effort. In order for the whole team to achieve success, it is important to invest in the team members. Provide your employees with the best training from industry experts. Test their knowledge retention in performance review. Having a skilled and well-informed workforce is the surest way of providing high quality service and support to your customers. It also saves you both money and time in delivering efficiencies and high performance, while minimising problems caused by defective administration and service. Train your staff so that they have a complete understanding of their roles within the organisation, and provide them with the right tools and support so they feel at ease to ask questions and report any issues or weakness they have identified in their job. 

Communication is key

Communication is a two way street, and good communicators understand when it is about leading, and when it is time to listen. Successful companies listen to their clients, customers, and themselves. Well-informed customer service officers have a comprehensive understanding of the product they represent, and ensure that their customers get the answers they are looking for. Listening to clients and employees allows them to give valuable feedback on their experiences with your business’ products and services. This in turn provides your business with opportunities to identify strengths and weaknesses from a variety of perspectives and helps you formulate a business plan going forward. 

The flip side of communication is about being able to convey your ideas and expectations effectively and courteously, whether it is to your clients or internally. Misunderstandings and errors can cause serious problems in a professional relationship. Ensure that everyone in your organisation knows the appropriate contacts for their various needs, the different channels of communication on which they might be reached, and their hours of availability. 

Having the right tools to run your business

Other than a high performing workforce, you need to have the right equipment and an efficient means of tracking it. Our inspHire rental software allows you to streamline and manage your rental business processes in a highly efficient and effective way. This allows your employees to have on hand the right tools for their job, and provides your business with the right resources to best service your customers. 

Contact us today to find out how your rental software can help you best run your business.

Tuesday, 3 December 2013

Integrate your IT and business strategies in 2014

Integrating IT strategies into your overarching business goals can seem like a daunting task. However, the rewards are numerous - merging your IT and business strategies can benefit both your employees and customers. It allows you to operate your business more smoothly, increase your business efficiencies, and reach your overall business goals by the end of the year. 

Taking an IT-oriented approach to your business can inspire you to make the most of your IT resources to run a truly innovative, collaborative business, and create opportunities for learning and engagement.

Learning and Development

Change begins a process of teaching and learning. Keep yourself up to date with the latest tools and resources. Invest in your in-house skills by offering ongoing training, learning and development by industry leaders and experts. A good system of learning and development helps increase productivity and quality. When employees feel valued and engaged, they become more receptive to changes and upgrades to the business, and adopt new skills and procedures faster. 

Integrating new technologies into your business means that it is easier to devise new, innovative ways of producing products. To ensure a smooth transition between past and future strategies, it is critical that you develop guidelines and create clear timeframes for change. 

Information sharing and support

Merging IT and business allows you to share resources and information between different sections of your company. Different areas of the business can access common resources and keep up to date with developments that may affect their work. Information sharing also creates more streamlined processes for those involved in a project. It reduces waste and clutter, saves time and makes a wide range of data readily accessible to those who need it.

Integrating IT into your business strategy also involves merging IT support and business support. Adopting a holistic system of support can help both your customers and employees solve their immediate problems. This in turn eliminates a lot of headaches and builds a solid foundation for the business to move forward and take on new risks with confidence.  

Management and employee engagement

Employee participation and engagement can be a stumbling block for a business going through significant structural changes. To help smooth out the process, it is vital that your business and IT strategies are integrated, implemented and enforced throughout the change process. 

This means having in place a governance strategy aimed at training, providing support and opportunities for collaboration. Similarly, your IT strategy should provide you with the right tools to support the business goals you set for company. With a holistic approach to the use of IT, you can better manage your business and achieve your goals for the upcoming year.  

A collaborative team-oriented approach

Ultimately, integrating your business and IT strategies is about helping your business attain its overall goal - its success and profitability. Having the right IT strategy in place can help you create faster, more efficient business processes and a more collaborative culture. 

Merging your business and IT solutions means that you get the most out of new technologies for your business, such as cloud computing and mobile access. These technologies can reduce the cost of extra equipment, maximise the use you get out of existing resources, and avoid duplication of processes and work. At the end of the day, merging IT solutions into your business plans is about better managing your time, money and  personnel. 

Looking ahead 

Initiating change in your IT infrastructure and business strategy can be a difficult process. When you are considering merging your business and IT strategies, it is important that you set clear goals and expectations about what you are aiming to achieve for your company. Having the right people available to assist you and provide you with the support you need can make the whole process effortless. 

Contact us today for more information on how you can integrate IT strategies into your business plans. 

Keep up to date with our latest products and offerings by following our blog. 

Sunday, 1 December 2013

Why you should invest in software for your equipment safety

With tough economic times behind us, companies are starting to move forward by investing in safety and loss prevention. Rental software is increasingly used by many industries as a safety tool for their inventory and security. This is particularly evident for companies with high value equipment. 

Why should you take precautions against theft

For a lot of businesses in the construction, manufacturing, oil and gas industries, heavy equipment are among their most valuable and indispensable assets. Machinery and equipment are expensive, often hard to purchase but essential to the smooth operation of the business. Unfortunately, this also makes them prime targets for theft and vandalism.

Theft and vandalism cost businesses nearly $1 billion dollars a year in locating, repairing or replacing the missing or damaged equipment. They also cause delays and downtimes in operations, lower staff morale and raise insurance premiums.

Fortunately, the risk of theft and vandalism can be mitigated by raising awareness and checking whether your workplace has certain risk factors: 
  • Unsecured premises
  • Universal keys
  • Lack of security and safety mechanisms
  • Equipment left open and accessible
  • Bad record keeping and product identification 
If your business is at risk of theft and vandalism, it is important to fully consider the consequences for your operations if the risk was to eventuate. 

Grave consequences of theft

Theft and vandalism can have serious consequences for a company. First and foremost, there will be direct financial loss due to the loss or damage of valuable asset. This will directly impact on your profitability.

Second, a flow-on effect is the time loss associated with the lack of equipment. Often, the business will be forced into a period of downtime or delay due to the lack of effective tools and machinery for employees to do their job.

Third, workplace health and safety can often be compromised when a business lacks the necessary equipment for its operations. In an effort to make up for lost time or efficiencies, employees can often overlook certain details and safety obligations that are critical to a healthy workplace health and safety culture. 

To guarantee strong safety standards and prevent loss, you need the right software. Without the safeguards provided by the appropriate safety software set up, your business run the risk of fostering a lax attitude towards safety. This may result in security breaches, injuries, and increase the cost and time taken to remedy processes and make up for business losses.

A software solution to loss prevention 

Installing the right software to manage workplace security and risks can reduce and mitigate some of the consequences of theft and compromised workplace safety.

The right software solution should have the following safety features:
  • Safety inspections
  • Incident reporting
  • Preventative training
  • Hazard alerts and awareness
  • Corrective training

Having the right rental software in place means that your business would be able to access better security and surveillance, keep up-to-date with a record of what the equipment is onsite, in use or offsite. The right rental software should be able to provide you with real time status updates on your equipment so that valuable equipment is never left unattended and at risk of vandalism or theft.

With the right rental software, you can streamline processes to minimise injury, increase security and access safety mechanisms such as alarm systems and immediate mobile updates if things go astray outside business hours. Installing the right rental software can completely change the way you maintain and manage your equipment and workplace safety.

Getting the most out of your rental software

As businesses come back from a tough economy, there has never been a better time to invest in a rental software that revolutionalises the way you utilise and maintain your equipment and assets. This is particularly relevant for those in the construction industry, as the commercial and residential housing sectors continue to grow into 2014. Increasingly, rental software is becoming more functional and more integrated into the daily operations of businesses in many industries. As your business moves into the future, consider how you can get the most of out of your rental software to enhance business security, better manage your equipment and increase your business safety and security.

To find out more about inspHire’s rental software, contact us today. 

Keep up to date with the latest in business software solutions by following our blog.