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App Development

Tech, Your Business, and Operational Efficiency

Nothing gets us fired up as much as helping businesses implement tech solutions that help them with their core company. At a high level, we see over and over again that well-implemented tech has these three benefits: save money, ease team frustration, gather great data, gain invaluable insights into your …


Nothing gets us fired up as much as helping businesses implement tech solutions that help them with their core company. At a high level, we see over and over again that well-implemented tech has these three benefits: save money, ease team frustration, gather great data, gain invaluable insights into your business!

Full Transcript Below: 

Andrew:

Save them money on labor costs. Make them more efficient so processes take less time.

Cris:

To be able to build an application that basically tracks all those steps along the way and keeps you the most effective.

Andrew:

There’s truly a lot of ways you can improve operational efficiency through the use of technology.

Cris:

How are we using tech, leveraging that to save our customers time and money? We are going to talk about operational efficiency. What does that mean? How can we, as a tech company, use tech to basically save companies money and improve their efficiency? So that’s what we’re going to talk about. So how are we doing that right now? How are we using tech, leveraging that to save our customers time and money and help improve efficiencies for them?

Examples of Improved Business Outcomes

Andrew:

I mean, it’s a really broad topic. Obviously, there’s ways we could save them money on labor costs, make them more efficient so processes take less time. Even save them on, say supply usage, things like that. So, some examples of ways we’ve done that for clients in the past is we had one client, CEIS, who we built an app combined with some hardware that the client had designed to measure the fuel level in airplanes. So that pilots could easily check it from their iPhone. So that was something we did in the aeronautic space.

Andrew:

We’ve done different inspection type apps where the company was already doing inspections with like pen and paper kind of thing in the field. And then, manually filling that out and then taking the time to fax that somewhere else and that sort of thing. And we actually built mobile apps for them. So that they, in the field, could just do their inspections right there. So one of them was in, well, actually they were both kind of related to ag and farming. But one them had to do with measuring the efficacy of chemicals being sprayed and how efficiently that was being done to make sure they weren’t wasting money on chemicals because they’re really expensive.

Cris:

I know, exactly. They’re so expensive when you’re dealing in the ag space. I mean, even just a small amount of overspray on a crop across just acres and acres.

Andrew:

Hundreds and hundreds.

Cris:

You suddenly you realize that. I mean, it’s a lot of money. And so getting down to really just micro amounts of spray inefficiencies is extremely profitable if you can get rid of those.

Andrew:

Absolutely. And we did another one too having to do with inspections and packing houses. So the company used an app that we built for them to help them just really kind of streamline this inspection process and be able to fill it all in and submit it and have it instantly go back to headquarters so that they could analyze the data.

Cris:

Because it’s amazing when you’re talking about, food packing, food in a grocery store or at a local market. The journey that apple or banana or head of lettuce or whatever was actually went through to get there is amazingly insane and a very in-depth process. And so to be able to build an application that basically tracks all those steps along the way and keeps you the most effective and efficient, that’s obviously how tech can help.

Andrew:

Well, and just another one you do is anything that will just kind of save you on cashier window hours. So let’s say you have a line with a cashier there that’s working eight hours a day, taking payments for things. We’ve done projects in the past with kiosks before where now they can reduce those window hours or eliminate them completely and customers can opt, you know, for self-service. So there’s really a lot of ways you can improve operational efficiency through the use of technology, be it through a kiosk or mobile apps or websites.

Identifying Opportunities to Improve Efficiency

Cris:

There’s tons of benefits to it. As a company, clients, they come to us because they’re trying to get these benefits from tech and how we leverage them. Is this a healthy thing that you see? People going down the road of leveraging tech to help be efficient? Is this just angering their workforce? How helpful and beneficial is it for companies to be thinking on the line of tech and investing in tech to help them grow? Is it a good line of thinking?

Andrew:

No, it is. It is a good line of thinking. We really like to start with what is the problem that the client is trying to solve? Not necessarily what tech is right for you because when we start with the problem, we can see what their objectives and their end goal are. And so in some cases, it might be that they’re actually trying to lower labor costs. And in other cases, it might be that they just want people to be able to make the best use of their time. And so rather than having that person sit there and take payments and count cash all day, we can repurpose that, we can have a machine do that and have that person go do something else. So again, it really just kind of comes back to what are your objectives?

Cris:

Tech is not always about just replacing the human element. It’s about making the human element and we’ve even talked about it when we were talking machine learning and AI type stuff. We’re trying to take the benefits of the human brain and be able to maximize those efficiencies. And then the things that machines or data logs or any kind of tech that they can do really well, let’s leverage those things and not just replace the humans, but let them be useful toward your company, right.

Andrew:

We’re trying to make it so that your customers’ and your users’ experience with you are more rich and fulfilling and make them want to come back and just more pleasant for everyone.

Other Benefits to Building Custom Software

Cris:

That’s good. So obviously very specific depending on the customer and what their project needs are and how we can make them effective and more efficient as a company. What are some of these benefits? Obviously, it’s great to be efficient, but why? So what are the benefits? Why should companies be investing in tech like this, like we’ve described to basically be more efficient?

Andrew:

Well, there’s a variety of reasons. One is it allows us to capture more information, right. And to really get a better view of what are the inefficiencies in our business? What are the pain points? What data can I gather to help me make smarter decisions with my business?

Cris:

Cause it might be that, you’re like on a pen and paper style process, and that data, you write it down, it goes on a file cabinet somewhere, and then you never touch it and think about it. But now that we’ve maybe digitized that process and it’s actually on a tablet or a phone, we now have that data. We can parse that data. We can find trends within it. All the analyzation that goes along with collecting that data, you are already doing that. But now that it’s collected in an actual digital form, there’s so much more you can do with it.

Andrew:

Exactly.

Cris:

So interesting.

Andrew:

And we really like to help clients understand what their ROI is going to be on this investment. So again, we start with the problem, we look at the pain points, we help them figure out what it’s going to cost to solve this problem. And then, are they going to get a good return on that investment? That’s important. It’s not just important that we get it done on time and on budget, but there’s actually a win, a win for them.

Cris:

And that return on investment could be different because yes, you obviously want a tangible, monetary return on investment. But it also could be that again, back to pen and paper processes, human errors.

Andrew:

Human errors and just frustration, too. We can help remove frustration and friction from the whole process.

Cris:

I know we’ve had processes where it is a handwritten out in the field type, taking notes, gathering info that has to go back to some administrative team, and then they have to literally decipher that and put that into some system that might be an off the shelf system. And you’re dealing with literally frustrations of, “I can’t read your ugly handwriting, Andrew.”

Andrew:

Mine is horrible. That would be real.

Cris:

That right there is even just inefficiency that gets added in and you’re bypassing that person not to replace them, but to allow them to do something else, which is a tangible benefit that could help with lower payroll costs and obviously catching errors and that sort of a thing. And then of course you run into ideas. I would say, where people have a lot of off-the-shelf type solutions that you might be able to actually combine those into something, make it more effective in a single application. Now you’re not paying six or seven licenses. You own a piece of software, right. You own a system that not only pays for itself in a short amount of time, but that just continues to pay for itself.

Andrew:

And that’s a really good point in the ROI, are you paying for some, particularly if it’s an expensive subscription-based system, we can look at how much you’re paying per year, per seat kind of thing, and help you calculate like, “Okay, am I going to make my money back within a year, within six months within 18 months?” What makes sense?

Alexandra:

Thank you so much for joining us for this episode of Bixly Tech Tuesday. I hope you enjoyed that conversation between Cris and Andrew, as they talked about the ways in which you can leverage tech to make a huge impact in your business and especially the efficiency of your business, saving you a lot of time, money, getting you reliable data. If you have any questions at all about what they talked about today, go ahead and leave them in the comment section. And don’t forget to check out the description box down below. We have a bunch of really helpful links for you guys, including a link to our free custom software guide, as well as a link to our website bixly.com. And right at the top of our website, you’ll see a button that says, “Get my project roadmap.” And that gives you a free 60-minute call with Cris to talk about your next app idea. Until next time, this has been an episode of Bixly Tech Tuesday.

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