Isaac Ludlow Series Part 1: Time Management

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Hey Builders,

I just wanted to say congratulations on choosing the building industry.  It’s a rewarding industry when it’s going well and it’s also a school of hard knocks.  So, well done for choosing it, and well done for sticking at it.

Today I just wanted to chat a bit about a couple of very useful time management tools.  As builders, you’ve got a constant list of things to do:  You’ve got quoting, you’ve got project management, you’ve got a bundle of issues to resolve as they come up, people to manage, and issues that clients have

As the business owner, it’s really important that you are getting your head into the business owner’s role.  That means focusing on growing your business and taking it in the direction that you have intended for your business.  That’s a constant challenge, because there is a whirlwind of things going on around you that can distract you.  It takes some grit and determination to get your head into the business owner’s space.

Let me explain what I mean by the business owner’s space: this is where you are doing the tasks or roles that return the most money or add the most value for the future of your business – like putting systems in place, or working on marketing and sales to bring in more clients.

As a coach my goal is to get you – the owner – spending your time doing the things that add the most value to your business and doing the things you enjoy the most.

As an example: some building company owners still do their own accounts even though it is a task they dread.  You can probably pay someone about $20 per hour to do this, while you could be doing other activities worth $50 or more to your business.  Obviously it takes a bit of work to train the new person and you’ll need to trust them, which can be hard to do when you first start out.  Keep in mind that getting the right people in the right roles is going to expand your business.

Business tool #1

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In the table above, have a think about which of the tasks you are currently doing that fit in the bottom left of the table with low enjoyment and low skill that give you a low return.  Look for ways to delegate those tasks and spend more of your time as the business owner in the high enjoyment and high skill tasks that give you the best return.

Business tool #2

Here is another tool I’d like to share that many business owners have said improves their productivity by up to 30%:

You may find that you have days where you arrive at work, check your emails, then you end up spending the entire day resolving issues.  It might feel like you’re chasing your tail.

This tool helps with that.
[Click on this link to access a template]

PlannerHere’s how to use it:

  • Make a list at the end of each work day for what you need to get done tomorrow.  There might be 10-15 things on there.
  • Go through and rate them as high, medium or low priority and approximately how many hours it might take.
  • Have a look and see which tasks you can delegate to your team if possible.
  • Choose your high priority tasks and put them into your planner for the next day.

Once they have been planned in, tick the planned column.  If there is any time left, look at your medium priorities and put them in too.  You possibly won’t get to the low priority tasks and that is okay – The box in the top right is to write your top 6 priority tasks for the day, in order of importance, to help keep you focused.

The reason this works so well is that your next day is planned out. This means that, when you leave work, you can let go of those tasks running around in your head – because they are planned in.  It also means that when you get to work the next day, there’s no wondering about what to do first, you can just get straight into it.  Surveys, and my clients, have found that just by doing these simple steps you can be 30% more productive.

Unfortunately, no matter how well you’ve planned, there will still be days that will be crazy and things will go wrong.

The exceptions will happen, especially in the construction industry, but planning your day in advance and focusing your time on the areas that will grow your business, and that you enjoy the most, will give you a huge advantage.

Well done guys.  Look forward to catching up again in RaveBuild’s  next newsletter.

Isaac Ludlow
Business Coach
ActionCOACH 
The World’s #1 Business Coaching Firm
Hamilton, New Zealand
Mobile: +64 27 548 3302

www.isaacludlow.actioncoach.com

 

Manage Your Crew With Ease

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A team cannot be successful if they do not communicate with one another. Whether it be sports teams or your team of workers and subcontractors, this is incredibly true. However, it’s a lot more difficult to reach your crew when they are all in various locations than it is to simply shout to a teammate from across a pitch, right? At RaveBuild, we understand this problem and make it easy for you to work with your crew and subcontractors when you’re not within shouting distance.

As with the other features of our software, it begins in the cloud. By having everyone on board with the RaveBuild app, they can receive messages and notifications in real time whether they be at their desks, or on a job. Our task messaging too allows them to easily communicate any issues to you, with the option of uploading photos or documents as well.

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Our software also reduces the need to chase subcontractors around, trying to figure out their hours. Thanks to our easy to use time sheet feature, subcontractors and team members can easily log on to a job and mark what time they began and completed their work for the day. Our software will then keep track of the time they worked. No need for constant phone calls or disputes over how much someone worked, simply enter it into the time sheet, and RaveBuild tracks it all.

Also, getting to the time sheet page is a breeze! Just click on the drop down menu in the top right corner, and select the “Timesheets” option. It’s that easy! From there, simply choose to add a new entry, enter your times, what you were doing, and any comments you have, and you’re done.

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To learn more about our most recent changes and updates, check out the “Technical Updates” tab on our blog, or visit http://ravebuild.co.nz/ to get in touch with us!

 

Manage your schedule like a pro with RaveBuild

Life in the construction industry is fast moving and frequently changing, and trying to keep a schedule up to date and actually follow it is a job in itself. Things get delayed, issues arise, and people have to cancel. Unfortunately, that’s just part of the process, and every time that does happen, you may find it affecting your entire upcoming schedule. Luckily, RaveBuild can help combat these issues and help keep things running smoothly!

7dschedThe first thing you will see when logging in to your RaveBuild account is your 7-Day Schedule, located on the right side of the page. This is exactly what it says it is, and gives you an idea of what tasks need to be accomplished throughout the upcoming week. Each task is colour coded-appointments are coded in red, and scheduled tasks or follow ups to be completed are coded blue. One fantastic feature of our schedule, is the ability to click on individual tasks, and mark them as “complete” as you finish each one. This easily helps you see if you are on track, or if you need to adjust your schedule.

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Easily adjusting your schedule is another great feature with Rave. Let’s say you’re on track with a project, when all of a sudden it starts pouring rain on your job site. Suddenly, it’s too muddy to drive your machines and continue. It may even take an extra day or two just for the ground to dry up enough to work again! Just like that, you’re off schedule and need to adapt. Luckily, you can go into the RaveBuild app, and choose to adjust either your entire schedule, or only individual tasks to compensate for this delay. No more scratching your head trying to imagine how your adjusted schedule looks. Simply go into your calendar and adjust your tasks. The best part? Your crew, clients, and contractors can see changes pertaining to them, and they are instantly made aware of the change as soon as it is made. No need to make phone calls to everyone, simply make a few clicks, and everyone is notified. Saving your hours if not days of running around in the process!

 

The calendar feature gives you a monthly view of your schedule, and allows you to manage your personal schedule rather than your crew’s. In your personal calendar, Rave allows you to set your own tasks to be completed and schedule your own appointments for your own viewing. If you need to, simply make them visible so others will know that you’re not available at a certain time.

 

Having a synced calendar allows you to better manage not only your time, but your crew and contractors as well. With the click of a button, you save time that would have otherwise been spent making phone calls to update everyone on what is going on. To learn more about how you RaveBuild can help you manage your schedule more effectively, and give you more free time, get in contact with us at: https://ravebuild.co.nz/ or on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/ravebuildmanagement/  

 

 

Join us for the WBCRT Button Lunch

buttonlunchinfo At RaveBuild, we take great pride in developing technology that will help others down the road, and we support other forward-focused groups as well. This is why we have partnered with the Waikato Breast Cancer Research Trust (WBCRT), as the sponsor for their second annual Button lunch! The Button Lunch is a fundraiser to raise money for the WBCRT to further their research, and help countless women around the world in the fight against breast cancer. The WBCRT takes a great deal of pride in their research and has helped both local and international researchers in their pursuit of a cure for breast cancer.

The Button Lunch is a celebration of those who have won their battle with cancer, and also of progress made towards finding a cure. Hosted at the Sir Don Rowlands Centre, this event will begin at 12pm on Friday, September 28th, and feature a luncheon, silent auctions, and fabulous entertainment. All are welcome, and we encourage anyone to buy a ticket to the event and join us as we all raise money for a fantastic cause, and keep the WBCRT at the forefront of international breast cancer research.

To RSVP to the event, please click Register to reserve a table, or Donate to simply help fund further research. We hope to see some familiar faces, and get to know more at this afternoon of celebration!

 

Stay Connected Using Cloud-Based Software

As a project manager, having everything you need at your fingertips means that you can tick off more tasks on your to do list – and get more work done.  Yet, how often is that truly the case? How often do you find yourself digging through piles of paperwork or scrolling through email after email in search of a document? How often are you interrupted by subcontractors or clients keeping them in the loop on what is going on, and when you need them on site? If you can relate to these issues, RaveBuild has a solution for you.

Ravebuild is cloud based project management software, allowing you, your contractors, and your clients to constantly be informed about what is going on with each project you have running. Rather than constantly being interrupted by your subcontractors, eliminate the need by having the project details, schedule and documents readily available in the (FREE to download) RaveBuild app. By doing this, you can let them know if things have been delayed, and when you need them on a job. They can easily (and securely) upload invoices, materials lists, and other important documents via the app, making documentation easily accessible for both you and your contractor.

“Rave is simple and easy to use. I save heaps of time as the entire team can access information and documents for each project and see all upcoming tasks on the schedule.” – Mark, Project Manager

Additionally, you can streamline communication with your crew by doing anything from updating schedules and managing time sheets, to monitoring the supply of materials. By having the flexibility to set permissions (access to information) within RAVE for each individual, everyone can see the relevant information that pertains to them – resulting in better communication, less confusion, and less down time.

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Having cloud-based storage doesn’t just benefit the team on the tools though. Clients reap the benefits of having peace of mind throughout their build by being able to access invoices as well as progress photos.  You also have the option of providing engaged clients with real time access to the schedule. Keeping clients informed is one of the keys to keeping clients happy, and by providing them with real-time updates, RaveBuild makes that easier than ever.

To learn more about how you can get on board with our project management software, contact us at: http://ravebuild.co.nz and follow us on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/ravebuildmanagement/

Improve Your Brand With Client Portal

Maintaining open lines of communication is incredibly important for everyone involved in the building process. Builders must know what subcontractors are doing, as well as meet the clients needs. Subcontractors must know when and where they are needed for a job, and most importantly, clients want to know what is going on throughout their building process. Keeping clients in the loop can oftentimes be one of the most difficult parts of building, and can be a serious source of stress for both the builder and the client. Fortunately, at RaveBuild, we keep the best interests of both parties in mind with our Client Portal option.

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Streamline Communication

Using the Client Portal, we make it simple for both the builder and the client to keep track of progress on a job.  The Client Portal streamlines communication by giving the builder the ability to upload photos on site through our mobile app, instantly available for clients to view.  By cutting the need for constant phone calls, your team is freed up to focus on other tasks.  No longer will clients need to stress about not knowing the progress of their job.  No more frantic calls or playing phone tag in an attempt to find out what is going on.  Simply upload the progress photos throughout the build, and the customer can view them in real time from anywhere they are connected thanks to our cloud-based technology.

Step Up Your Customer Service

Providing this level of customer service builds trust between builder and client. Trust makes the building process much less stressful than it used to be, and improves your overall image as a company. The more comfortable a client feels with a company, the more loyal they are, and more likely they are to become a repeat customer or refer your company to someone else. RaveBuild’s Client Portal gives you as a builder, an edge over the competition by being able to offer clients this level of involvement in the building process.

Add Client Portal to Your Website

Perhaps the best part of the Client Portal, is that it is directly linked with your website. Having the Client Portal on your website page increases traffic, allowing you to advertise more and keep client’s involved. Additionally, the Client Portal is completely customizable, and can be found (along with your portal URL) under the ‘Client Login View’ tab in your settings. Easily upload your company logo, and set the color scheme to match with just a few clicks. In fact, we’ve probably already done it for you!

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In the construction industry, word of mouth is your biggest weapon, and the only way that it works in your favor, is by keeping your clients informed and happy. Do your company a favor, and contact us about activating your company’s client portal!

For any questions regarding the Client Portal, get in contact with us via phone or on our website:

(NZ) 07-210-2228
(AUS)1800-179-163
http://ravebuild.co.nz/

How to Build Relationships with your Contractors

StockSnap_NJ5IKKFZ55Building a better relationship will help you improve your business and allow you to have some fun at the same time. When you build a better relationship you will build loyalty. Ultimately this could mean a smaller turnover for subbies, a better working environment and better communication. Good networking is an invaluable tool because it’s not always what you know but who you know. Continue reading “How to Build Relationships with your Contractors”

Bridging with Xero!

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It’s a match made in heaven with this beautiful accounting software and our powerful construction management tools!

We’re excited to tell you, you are now able to link your Xero account with your Rave Build account. Your progress payments will never be the same!

It’s about to get a whole lot easier with less double handling and more productivity!

For more information head to our help desk or email us at support@ravebuild.co.nz

 

 

Gathering New Customer Info? All You Need is Your Smart Device!

StockSnap_LJ515CPAKIHaving a display home is a great way to create new customer leads. The key to increasing your leads is to make sure that you gather all the relevant information, such as names and contact details, as well as any information you can gather on your customer’s needs. The more information you have the better idea you will get on how you can best help your new customer.

Because we understand the need our Rave Builders have to easily gather customer information, we have created a new and innovative tool that will help you. Never lose a customer again! Continue reading “Gathering New Customer Info? All You Need is Your Smart Device!”

Tips For Getting Over The Holidays And Getting Back Into Work

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Christmas is over and the new year has begun, but the sun is still out and people are still on the beaches enjoying summer. The rest of us have to get back into work, if you are anything like me, coming back can take some re-adjusting. The first week back can be hectic, here are some back to work tips to help you get back into your groove. Continue reading “Tips For Getting Over The Holidays And Getting Back Into Work”