Yes, there’s an up-front investment, but going mobile can improve your cleaning business in ways you might not have imagined.
Mobile is one of the fastest developing segments of the technology sector. Mobile devices cover the gamut. In general, though, smart phones and internet-connected tablets run either Google’s Android or Apple’s iOS operating systems.
Owning your Own Devices
These devices can shape your cleaning business in ways you may not have yet envisioned. Apple’s iPhone is the backbone of my company’s mobile workforce at Better Life Maids. It provides a uniform software experience, ease of use and security features. We prefer to own our devices because we are using them to send out client information and want to control security settings such as how long an email remains on the device (one day). We also want to be able to track the devices without infringing on our staff’s privacy during off hours.
We use tools like the built-in email to send route sheets to the phones. These route sheets save paper and allow our teams to click on a client’s phone number or address to navigate to their home. Some scheduling software suites even allow you to skip emailing the route sheets altogether, instead giving your staff limited access to your scheduling software to manage their day-to-day schedules.
Built in GPS Technology
GPS technology is built into many of these mobile devices. Free tools like Apple’s “Find My iPhone” allow you to see where all of your devices are in real time. More robust tools like Nextraq’s software allow you to view the phone’s track history, stops and more. This information can be key if you pay your staff hourly. It can also help you make important business decisions that you would be guessing on otherwise.
Creating Apps & Forms Libraries
Better Life Maids has developed its own suite of apps, including a library for critical documents such as safety procedures, MSDS sheets and even federal and state labor law posters. We’ve also developed a mobile forms library critical to our teams. These forms include our cleaning checklist, damage reports, accident/incident reports, expense reimbursements, request’s off and daily check out forms. The cleaning checklist alone helps improve service on each visit, providing additional information such as times in and out and geolocation tagging. This way we know that the checklist was done on site.
Another tool we utilize is Square, one of dozens of mobile payment solutions popping up. The ability to make sure we collect payment right when services are provided to new clients is a huge benefit to both us and our clients.
For less than a dollar per day you can deploy top- of-the-line mobile devices to each of your teams. With the increased information you will gain about your mobile workforce and your team’s increased productivity, you will more than see a return on your investment. Big businesses have been using custom devices like these for years; now even the smallest business can take advantage of the latest mobile technology.
Matt Ricketts is President and Chief Experience Officer of Better Life Maids, a fast-growing maid service founded in St. Louis, Missouri and expanding coast to coast through franchising.