8 Reasons To Replace Paper Inspection Forms With Mobile Apps

Jan 28, 2015

 

Consumer Goods Technology
In field data collection, the seemingly obvious option for recording data is on paper. This proves to have numerous flaws, however. From errors in transferring data, to time-consuming reviews, using paper inspection forms is far from a perfect system.

Luckily, there is a new alternative to the old-fashioned pen and pad: mobile apps. With a mobile app, all data can be entered in real-time and synced in the app, so that it may be viewed instantly from any other device. Let's take a look at what makes this software-based system far more effective than paper inspection forms.

1. Efficiency

With paper and spreadsheets, information has to be recorded in the field, copied to a spreadsheet later in the evening, and then sent for review. If there are any issues with the data, it has to be sent back and forth between supervisor and field personnel until everything is correct.

With a mobile app, this multi-day approach can be boiled down to a 20-minute process. Field personnel add data in real time, which can be reviewed by a supervisor remotely on a separate device. There's no need to transfer data or send spreadsheets, as everyone can access the same information through the mobile app.

2. Better Customer Service

Faster review also means a faster turn-around. Your clients can receive same-day results, instead of waiting extra time for documents to be checked over. Corrections are just as easy and can be made in real time, without sending out for updated copies or spreadsheets.

3. Accuracy

Because data can now be reviewed immediately, any errors or issues in the data can be addressed straightaway, while the team is still on location. This shaves days off a project's timeline, reducing the possibility of having to return to a site to gather more information.

4. Reduced Costs

A mobile app does not only save your company valuable time, but significantly reduces labor and data entry costs as well. Copying, transferring, and correcting data all take up significant time when only one person can view and edit a project at a time. On a mobile app, however, everyone can make changes and view the same project data, eliminating the need to transfer or send files around.

5. Corporate Responsibility

In an age of green movements and environmental initiatives, it has never been more important to promote sustainability and strive to be more eco-friendly. This could not be easier than going digital and removing paper from your business's daily activities. Using a mobile app removes the need for paper documents and spreadsheets, helping both the environment and your ecological footprint.

6. Adaptability

With a mobile app like Flowfinity, the software is fully customizable without programming, allowing you to tailor the app to your needs. This makes the software sustainable and long-lasting; there's no need to buy new software, you can simply adapt the existing model to current requirements.

7. Simplicity

No copying. No transferring. Real data in real time. You choose the parameters of your software, allowing you to use only what you need. Simple, straightforward design allows for easy use, minimizes the risk of error, and makes corrections a breeze.

8. Compatibility

Mobile apps can be configured to work across all devices, whether you want to integrate them into your current hardware or add them to new technology. Also, apps can always be updated to match new versions of laptops, handheld devices, etc., making for the most versatile option in data collection and inspection forms.

In a recent case study, RTS Associates replaced their paper forms and spreadsheets with a Flowfinity mobile app for field inspections. Since doing so, they have reduced labor costs by 30%, improved their data accuracy and customer service, and eliminated the need for paper forms and spreadsheets all together.

"Once I saw the capabilities the Flowfinity mobile platform and how you could customize it, I knew it was exactly what we needed. I did a quick calculation on the cost of the app compared to what I spend on data entry in one week, and saw that the software would pay for itself almost immediately." - Ryan Hart, Director of Wireless Operations, RTS Associates



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