Imagine a business running on paper-based processes in the 21st century.
Sounds surprising, isn’t it?
And yet, there are still many companies that run their core processes entirely on paper.
I have personally seen companies heavily dependent on paper-based processes and recording error-filled data in daily operational tasks, including data collection, maintenance, inspection, and many others. In any case, this is not ideal.
In this article, I will show the core problems that arise when you run your business using paper-based processes. Not only will I point you toward significant issues, but also reward you with knowledge on how to convert your paper-based processes into mobile apps.
Let’s get started!
Paper-based forms are extremely difficult to maintain, cumbersome and lead to inadequate utilization of time, money, and resources.
Not to mention, the field workforce is also prone to contributing to errors while collecting data through paper forms.
In addition, paper forms & digital checklists are not mobile, hard to use, and can’t be universally integrated into the rest of your company. Office managers and supervisors always have a tough time exporting and analyzing data collected by their field teams on paper.
Here’s why paper forms and checklists are a terrible idea for field-intensive organizations to perform numerous tasks such as data collection, inspections & maintenance, audits, work orders, etc.
Paper Reduces Productivity
In today’s interconnected and digital world, using paper-based processes means losing productivity. When indulged in such tedious processes, employees spend too much time on repetitive tasks that consume lots of time.
Paper processes come with slow collaboration, a lack of clear visibility, disconnected workflows, and quality & compliance risks, thereby adding clutter and complexity to the field processes.
Paper Forms are Prone to Human Errors
While entering the data into systems, there’s another possibility that the wrong information can get collected.
Apart from filling out the wrong form, accountability could come as another significant issue. For example, sometimes a field agent who has filled up the form cannot make out what he has actually written.
Wrong calculations are another area where a majority of errors take place that leads to wrong invoices, work orders, etc.
All in all, paper forms just expose your processes to a variety of errors.
No Media Rich Data
Paper forms and checklists are useless when it comes to transferring media-rich information that includes images, videos, GPS location, and annotations. This makes it extremely challenging for field teams like inspection & maintenance, incident, and audits to take account of a certain scenario or an event using paper forms.
Data capture just becomes slower and doesn’t provide valuable, media-rich information that is often required in field intensive work.
Lack of Visibility and Transparency in a Field
Paper forms are not capable of providing clear visibility and transparency over ongoing field processes. Yes, it’s true that they can directly just call them to make updates on work.
But then records of fieldwork that field technicians complete will be completed on paper and still need to be rewritten or entered into a computer later.
No Business Insights
Paper offers no kind of insight into data whatsoever. Office employees don’t have additional information about the type of data being collected, trends, how frequently checklists are completed, who is skipping them, and so on.
When utilizing a paper system, you simply cannot obtain deep knowledge without much study and patience.
Lost Data and Records
When paper forms and checklists are employed for the data collection, there is a high possibility that mission-critical data and records can be lost or misplaced.
This makes it difficult to retrieve information, ultimately wrestling in costly delays, lost business opportunities, and frustrated plant personnel.
In today’s interconnected & digital world, organizations can’t afford to do business in traditional, paper-based ways.
As a leading field-based organization, we have seen many companies seeking a viable solution to get rid of their paper forms and checklists while working on the field.
Hence, we have come up with a solution – Forms & Checklist Based Mobile Apps. These mobile apps play a critical role in streamlining and managing field operations.
Let’s start with number one:
Streamlines Entire Field Operations
Forms & checklist-based mobile apps possess the power of streamlining the entire operations landscape. It empowers organizations to digitally carry out activities such as data collection, inspections, maintenance, surveys, cleaning, and many others.
With the help of mobile apps, organizations collect media-rich information like images, videos, and signatures and store them at a centralized location. These mobile apps also help employees remember what they need to do and keep data or records of the tasks that have been completed.
In fact, some advanced mobile apps from brands like Axonator also enable companies to create customizable workflows and generate automated reports to ensure that everything is running smoothly.
Real-time Reports, Notifications, and Alerts
Mobile Apps empower the workforce to send reports, notifications, and alerts in real-time. This allows office members to gather mission-critical information from field members. They can receive real-time information from the related tasks like inspection, maintenance, and cleaning to back-office/office workers to come up with an immediate response.
These digital checklists provide transparency and accountability in real-time at every step of the service process, ensuring efficiency and better outcomes.
Secure Data Storage, Export, and Analysis
Mobile apps help companies store, export, and analyze all required information at a centralized location (dashboard). From audits, trend analysis, and non-conformances, to KPIs, the dashboard enables you to see problems before they arise. With this information in hand, companies can continually improve how they work.
Achieve Digital Transformation
Digital transformation is no longer a choice but a necessity in today’s innovative world. However, the shift to digital technologies isn’t everyone’s cup of tea.
At times, this shift may feel challenging, but the implementation of forms & digital checklist-based mobile apps for processes that have a major impact on your business is the first logical step, compact, and cost-efficient step toward the digital transformation journey of any organization.
The automation of mission-critical tasks (Axonator calls it ‘MicroApp Strategy’) is an efficient way to dive into a more technologically centralized work environment.
If nothing else, it’s at least a step forward that will have a domino effect on productivity.
Explore The Most Effective Strategy for Digital Transformation( MicroApp Strategy).
4 Easy Steps to Convert Paper Forms & Checklists into Mobile Apps
If you did not think converting paper forms and digital checklists could help you, you probably still would not be reading this.
To explain in a better way how to convert paper forms and checklists, consider the following pointers.
1. Identify All Paper-Based Processes
Consult with numerous stakeholders like (office members and field technicians) in the firm’s vital operations. Then, identify mission-critical processes that have the most impact on your organization’s business.
Once you complete these steps, decide on the forms and checklists and look for solutions for the same.
If you’re not sure how and where to start, here are a few most requested forms & checklists from our customers:
2. Identify the Right Tool to Build Mobile Apps
In recent years, no-code platforms have emerged as a revolutionary technology that empowers organizations to convert paper forms & digital checklists into mobile apps with just drag & drop architecture.
All you have to do is do a little amount of research to find the right no-code platform that meets your needs.
3. Build, Customize, and Share Forms & Checklist-based Mobile Apps
The development of custom forms is a matter of a few clicks with the no-code platform. The app creation process is without code, intuitive, easy, and comes with responsive customer support on standby.
With the no-code platform, companies have access to thousands of pre-built libraries that can be assembled and reused with drag-and-drop features for creating custom forms & checklists-based mobile apps that fit their unique needs.
4. Deploy Mobile Apps in the Field as well as Office
Customers then can use these no-code mobile apps in the office as well as in the field. Apps built on no code are fully customizable, intuitive, and are easy-to-use.
Axonator as #1 No-code Platform for Building Mobile Apps
In this article, we’ve cleared how to convert mobile forms & checklists into mobile apps
If you are ready to take your business paperless, Axonator is the perfect enterprise-grade, no-code mobile app builder that will help convert paper forms and digital checklists into mobile apps with ease.
With a sleek UI, drag and drop interface, and intuitive user experience, Axonator’s mobile apps eliminate the use of paper forms completely and improve productivity.
Sign up and learn more about Axonator here!