Your company’s profitability is tied to your efficiency. The more productive your business is, the more you’ll be able to do with the same amount of resources. Streamlining business processes is something that all successful companies are focused on right now. Thanks to advances in technology, companies can automate and reduce costs, simultaneously freeing employees from spending time on manual processes to focus on more significant tasks that utilize their skills.
Having created solutions to help businesses of all size streamline their processes and workflow, we’ll explore four ways you can streamline your business processes for greater profitability using FileMaker.
1. Automate Your Business Processes
Because of FileMaker’s flexibility, your ability to integrate and automate gives you the power to improve each of your processes. FileMaker’s flexibility is one of the main reasons that companies choose FileMaker. 81 percent of FileMaker’s customers report that flexibility was the top reason they decided in favor of the platform.
Nearly limitless integrations allow you to connect your databases and other software programs for seamless automation. A variety of plugins and integrations are available, and powerful APIs make it possible to connect to external SQL data and integrate with other popular apps and web services.
What are some of the things you can do with FileMaker? Generate barcodes for use in warehousing. Send and receive emails directly from your business application without having to pull up your email program. Create PDFs automatically from any document. Automate legally-binding signature capture for contracts. Easily generate invoices and receipts. Send local alerts based on device information using geofencing (like meeting reminders). And much more!
(Note that many of these features are new to FileMaker 17, so you’ll want to be sure you have a current version of FileMaker. The Annual subscription option includes free updates to the latest version, so you won’t have to deal with upgrading or additional costs when the time comes to move up to a new version. The Annual license will also keep your applications secure with the latest security features.)
2. Identify Productivity Bottlenecks
Productivity gains are one of the main reasons businesses are using FileMaker to build custom applications. According to FileMaker’s research, 93 percent of businesses who built a custom app with FileMaker saw a reduction in inefficient tasks, while 91 percent saw an increase in team productivity.
When your systems and processes are all functioning disparately, it’s difficult to see where slowdowns are happening. You may know that a problem exists somewhere, but without a dashboard that allows you to look at projects or processes in detail, it’s difficult to know where the bottlenecks are. With FileMaker, you can quickly build dashboards that allow you to drill down and see exactly what’s happening where.
3. Enjoy Better Communication
Today’s teams are located across the country, and even across the globe. Dispersed teams may find it difficult to communicate due to the challenges that come with working remotely. With FileMaker, you can integrate communication tools directly into your application, making it easy for your team to collaborate.
Lack of communication organization is one of the key problems that drag down productivity. Streamlining your communication will allow your team to be more productive. Not only is collaboration easy with FileMaker, but messages are also able to be organized by project or team to be easily found. Team members will no longer need to track data and communications across multiple spreadsheets. Your team will spend more time getting the job done and less time working with the software tools you’re using.
4. Access Anywhere With FileMaker Go
In a variety of industries, team members are working out the office. Whether it’s the sales team traveling, project managers out in the field, or consultants working off site, your team needs to be able to access your business application anywhere. FileMaker Go allows you to easily share access with your team when they’re away from their desks. Team members can access the application on their smartphones and tablets in an easy-to-use, fully-responsive interface.
The tasks your team can perform while on the go are nearly limitless, thanks to FileMaker’s flexibility. For example, your team can:
- Upload signed contracts at a client’s office
- Create invoices during client visits
- Check inventory in a warehouse
- Log research results in the field
- Perform inspections on site
- Upload photos, videos, and audio files from your mobile devices to your database
- And much more
Because of FileMaker, companies and organizations of all sizes can benefit from the productivity increases that come from streamlining business processes. Begin taking advantage of all that automation has to offer, without waiting years for development, without the high cost of traditional enterprise-level software.
According to FileMaker’s most recent State of the Custom App report, companies are using custom apps to solve a variety of business challenges, including reliance on paper processes, scattered sources of information, reliance on complex spreadsheets, and significant manual data entry.
*From FileMaker, Inc.’s 2018 State of the Custom App Report.
FileMaker Brings Custom Applications Within Reach
While many software systems are available that can help you, these software systems may not be exactly what you need. In fact, according to the research report, 94 percent of companies that rely on packaged software don’t find it flexible enough to meet their needs. Your company’s processes are unique, and off-the-shelf solutions are often not quite right. If you have specific requirements, a custom application built with FileMaker can be precisely tailored to your individual needs.
*From FileMaker, Inc.’s 2018 State of the Custom App Report.
FileMaker is an excellent choice for building custom business applications for a couple of reasons.
- As a Workplace Innovation Platform, FileMaker is no-code/low-code, meaning that the time it takes to create a process-improvement application is dramatically reduced. You can get a new software system up and running quickly, allowing you to see the benefits of a streamlined process within a few months rather than a few years.
- Because building a process-improvement application in FileMaker requires significantly less time that traditional software development, applications are less expensive to build. You won’t need to pay for as much development time to get a high-quality, effective solution.