Your top business needs today?

Feb 8, 2011 | Business

We’ve learned that the more you know about buying and using software, the better it is for everyone – your business, your employees, and even your software vendor.

For countertop shops to be successful with software, it’s critical to discuss the top needs at your business today, how our software can address those needs, and what to expect when you’re getting started.

What are your top business needs today?

Your needs are important. Even though we’ve talked to thousands of fabricators, your countertop business is unique. It’s unique because of your employees, whether you have CNC’s in your shop, and if you use a whiteboard, desk calendar, or spreadsheets to run your business today.

It turns out that most fabricators have a super-long list of the problems they want to solve. But it turns out that you can only concentrate on the top few at a time, and the list is getting juggled all of the time… depending on what you got burned by most recently.

So, we use four questions to try to help you uncover your needs. What are you doing today? What works? What doesn’t? What’s the consequence of not changing?

The four questions

Based on the hundreds of conversations with fabricators we’ve had, here’s an example of how the conversation usually goes.

How are you scheduling and managing jobs today? We use a whiteboard for the template and installer schedules. For every job, there’s also a job folder that goes with the templater, but usually sits in the filing cabinet or on somebody’s desk. My production manager also has an excel spreadsheet to manage the shop, and every morning he prints out a list of what they’re working on.

What works about that? We do a good job, and we really concentrate on great customer service. With the whiteboard, everyone gets a good overview of where we are this week.

What doesn’t? I know we could be doing things better. If a customer calls, the people in the office need to look in more than one place to see or change a job. More often than not, they also need to go interrupt me (the owner) or my production manager to make sure they know what’s going on. Although it’s rare that we make mistakes, we occasionally miss an appointment, and sometimes last-minute changes to the job result in fabrication mistakes.

What’s the consequence of not changing? We’re growing, and I know that the scheduling problems that we have today will only get worse if we add more jobs. I don’t want our customer service to suffer. Just hiring more employees isn’t the only solution because as we have more people there’s more chance for misplacing a folder or mis-communicating. On top of that, it would be nice if I could take a vacation and not come back to a big mess.

Do you need to look at countertop software?

By talking through your business today and discovering your needs, hopefully we’ve figured out if it’s worth your time to look at what our software can do for you. Unless you have a need, it’s just a waste of everyone’s time to go through a demo. More on that in the next post.

Want to know more? At Moraware, we make software for countertop fabricators. JobTracker is scheduling software that helps you eliminate the time you waste looking for job folders. RemnantSwap is a place to buy and sell granite remnants with fabricators near you.