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Recent Work: Business Benefits of a Web Application

Wednesday, January 16th, 2013 by Erin Peters

west coast turf

Is your business using its website as an effective tool to accomplish tasks, increase efficiency and reduce your company’s overhead?

Did you know your website could do all of that and more?

While a traditional website allows users to read and digest information, a web application helps accomplish a specific task. A web application can not only help your company accomplish certain tasks but it can also help your company accomplish them more efficiently by automating and streamlining your workflow.

Let’s look at West Coast Turf, a full-service sod installation company and Graphtek Interactive client, as an example. The company had an existing web application that needed improved functionality and Graphtek Interactive was able to redesign West Coast Turf’s web application to provide the following benefits:

  • A User-Friendly Application Designed from a programmer’s point of view, West Coast Turf’s previous application accomplished the necessary tasks but lacked a user-friendly interface. Before the redesign, users had to switch back and forth between screens to look at the workflow and accomplish tasks. Now, everything can be viewed on one or two screens through an updated interface that utilizes pop-up screens.

Graphtek also incorporated drag-and-drop functionality to the application, allowing users to reschedule deliveries or change truck loads through a simple, visual interface.

Another important user-friendly component we added in the redesign was the ability for the client to be able to update and manage their own inventory. Previously, a programmer was needed to do simple tasks such as add a product or change a price.

  • A Streamlined Process The previous application had a few issues integrating with West Coast Turf’s online ordering system, resulting in a need for manual entry for online orders. Now, the process is streamlined and fully automated. Online orders flow seamlessly into the application, ready to be scheduled for delivery.
  • Increased Efficiency Sod doesn’t have a long shelf life—it literally has to be put down on the same day it’s picked up. To utilize their resources efficiently, we designed the application to allow dispatchers to easily manage their truck space and schedule deliveries in a cost-efficient manner. West Coast Turf’s new application literally calculates the amount of available space in a truck based on the day’s deliveries and manages the sequence in which the orders need to be loaded onto the truck. The company is able to save on fuel costs and make deliveries more efficient with this application.
  • A Higher Level of Customer Service West Coast Turf’s new application has a built-in feature designed to keep the company’s customers informed. Once a delivery is scheduled, the application automatically sends an email or text message to the customer, or creates a task for a customer service person to call the customer to inform them of their delivery date. This customer notification system is just one example of how an automated process can improve the customer’s experience.
  • A Reduction in Overhead If one of West Coast Turf’s employees spent four hours a week reentering data from the online ordering system into the old web application, the savings potential of an updated application is significant. Even at a rate of $10 an hour for a clerical employee, the rate is closer to $25 an hour once overhead and employment cost are figured in. That comes out to $100 a week—$5,000 a year—for an employee to reenter data.

If that same budget is instead used to develop an application that automates the process, it pays for itself within 12 months. After that, the company is simply putting more money toward its bottom line.

At Graphtek, we were able to save $40,000 a year by implementing a web application for our entire workflow system. Estimates, invoices and time tracking are now part of a   streamlined, automated process that not only saves money but also increases the efficiency of our project managers and salespeople.

Websites are much more than marketing tools—when implemented correctly, your company’s website can be an application that automates your workflow and increases your bottom line.

Are you ready to turn your website into a powerful application that saves your company time and money? Whether you have an existing application or want to build one from the ground up, contact Graphtek Interactive today to get started.

 






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