Know the best software to manage a workshop covering customer lifecycle, bookings, vehicle and spare parts management, mechanic management, quotes and invoicing?
What have been people's experience? What benefits can I expect from it? What are the gotchas?
Xero recently acquired an e-invoicing company with a vision that this will be one of the next big innovations for businesses. "It also makes it easy for governments and businesses to pay invoices...
For businesses looking to boost the productivity of their team, can anyone recommend a software to do this? I'm looking for the most easy-to-use platforms.
It's a bit difficult to recommend some specific tools. Primarily because "the best" and "most easy-to-use" aren't always synonymous. Are you looking for certain features or a specific category of tool?
Some things to keep in mind. Productivity tools is a pretty broad category that usually consists of the following types of software:
Most likely you'll need a combination of at least some of these to be the most productive. We had a really great guest post on our blog by a small business owner, Ayomide Joseph, where he lists specific use cases of his top 10 favorite free business tools: https://www.ganttic.com/blog/10-free-business-tools-for-startups
It breaks down these categories and offers some nice insight for other business owners.
Also be on the lookout for specific features. Because certain things can make or break the way you use these tools. Here’s a few software features that increase productivity:
Shareability - Depends on the tool, but you should think about who needs access. Is this mostly for management? Or are you creating something that needs to be shared with your team? Or even amongst outside entities, such as clients or freelancers? Whoever needs access, the issue then often comes back to price.
Use - How is it deployed? And how long will set-up take? Cloud-based is probably your best bet. It’s quick, easy, and can be accessed from anywhere. Especially since remote work won't be going away anytime soon. And even when we do return to the workplace, it's likely there will be many who implement a more hybrid approach with some people working remotely while others remain in the office. So not only do you need something that can be accessed remotely, but you also need to consider how it can help with the management of new ways of working.
Integration - Because you (probably) won’t be using just one piece of software, it’s better to connect your tools together. Not only does this cut down on the time of manually transferring and reproducing data, but it cuts down on human error. Many tools come with native integrations, but also keep in mind aspects such as APIs or Zapier accessibility. That way, as you grow as a business, you’ll have the option to sync your new tools down the line.
At the end of the day, the best productivity tools boils down to your individual needs. More expensive isn’t always better, but it’s also not the best idea to cut corners on something that you need everyday.
These days there are so many management platforms such as Asana, Active Collab, Trello, Podio Teamwork PM. Which one do you use and why?
At Fullstack we use Asana, and we find it the best for our team because of a few things:
As you mentioned in your question, there are quite a few available options these days! As with anything, the best starting point is being clear about your criteria. A good foundation would be to consider your required features, pricing, permissions, integrations and mobile access.
Project management also goes beyond the software, into project leaders, scalable processes and ongoing process refinements. We geek out on project management a little bit!
We have a blog post about this too, in case that’s helpful.
Hi everyone, I hope some of you can share your wisdom on the bottomless pit of info that is CRM. I'm the owner of a media recruitment and connections website, Rachel's List, which connects...
Zoho is a good middle of the road CRM which can do a lot out of the box reliabily. Pipedrive CRM is sales focused, so lacks many other core features your will expect and need from a CRM. Sugar CRM is excellent if you have lot of development capability as you can built in just about any complex or unique feature you like, at less ongoing costs compared to the per seat model. As said it is best to work backwards from what you currently need and even harder what you may need in the future to choose the right option. The problem is you often don't realise what you may need as you aren't aware of what CRMs can do at a much enhanced and automated level. For more complex requirements it is worth engaging a CRM consultant that is across the leading market place options and not aligned to any particularly product.
What can you say about InterAct Software? I'm specifically interested in feedback about manufacturing, payroll and GST compliance.
Vtiger.com. Cheaper, better.
There are heaps of programs out there. Some free others for a fee. It really comes down to what your business does and what else you use. I use vtiger for some companies and custom software for others.
I also use Hipchat to connect them together and have alerts. IFTTT is good for connecting different products. Really comes down to what your business needs.
I am wondering if anyone is aware of a product (ideally open sourced) that can look at buyer/user behaviour, develop dynamic content for individual users and track how the individual user is...
There are many different options out there, some of which are going to be more or less appropriate for you depending on your budget or the CMS you use.
A good solution for the dynamic content, Sales funnel, nurturing component of your question is Wishpond. Easy to use, powerful and good price and full of features (AB testing, pop ups, integrations etc). Of course there are solutions like hubspot, but these are pricey and often overpowered.
An alternative though one I do not have experience with is Leadsquared. Again It does what you are looking for I believe.
Was not sure what you meant by the ability for retargeting ads (that is more likely to be a code snippet on your site if I interpret correctly) though - sorry.
Without wanting to be too presumptive either, happy to discuss further if you like, or answer any other questions around this, or if needed help with any of the strategy.
I use a 13" MacBook Air and I *love* it's battery life, light weight, and robust construction. I travel a lot, and when a carry-on bag is limited to 7kg every gram counts. When I'm at my desk, I have it hooked up to a 24" external screen, position it on a stand, and use a wireless Apple keyboard plus a wireless Logitech mouse to have essentially a dual-screen desktop configuration.
Irrespective of which brand of notebook you purchase, I'd definitely recommend you invest in an SSD (Solid State Drive) - they're so ridiculously faster than a traditional Hard Disk Drive (HDD) that it'll blow you away. You might think it's just one small part of the equation, but you'd be wrong - the specs of my Macbook Air are nothing special (1.8GHz i5 with 4GB RAM) but due to the blazing fast SSD this machine has handled everything I've thrown at it including Adobe InDesign, Photoshop, Illustrator, Dreamweaver, Aperture, Microsoft Office suite, Dropbox, Google Drive, and scores of apps/windows active simultaneously - with a HDD you'd need to double all the other specs to make that possible. I can't recommend SSD highly enough.