My aim in writing these articles is to show you examples of how I use technology in my business. While there is lots of great stuff out there, I often find it hard to see how it all fits together. I sometimes see great software but have no idea of how to apply it to my own business. This blog is a way for me to show examples of how I have used different systems to complement and simplify my business; and, admittedly, to vent my excitement of implementing a new system that gives me more time to do the things I love to do.

Forms create data that is usable. I have the unfortunate displeasure of having to use an antiquated Point Of Sale that does not communicate with me or my accounting software. By using free online form builder Cognito forms I was able to integrate daily sales reporting with daily task accountability for staff. And create a customer service survey, a performance review form and receive an instant email of each one that was completed. All this by pairing Cognito forms with Todoist.

I have linked my daily recuring tasks with a URL from the Cognito online form. This link is next to the to-do item and must be done before the item is marked complete. The link takes my staff to a reporting form with mandatory fields in which they input their name for accountability tracking. The data can then be exported to a CSV file with usable data for trend charting and accountability information for performance reviews. Thus giving me a better view of the big picture.

The Big Picture!

The Big Picture! (view from the Hollywood hills)

Data is useless if there is no way that you can use it. It needs to be able to come out of any software you use and easily made into a chart or entered into a database. Then you can track trends over time and see if you need to make better and more informed decisions like tracking your EFTPOS vs CASH sales to see when to upgrade your merchant system. This is a better way of making decisions, rather than going by feel. Otherwise the info your systems produce are just pretty numbers that cant tell you much.