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Eforms 101: Everything You Need To Know About eForms

StrategyDriven Managing Your Business Article |eForms|Eforms 101: Everything You Need To Know About eFormsEach year, businesses in the United States waste about $8 billion managing paper alone. It’s a shocking statistic, given the amount of lip service business owners around the country pay to innovation. The age of 3D printing has been around for a while, yet the vast majority of businesses are still stuck on technology invented millennia ago.

One of the primary uses of paper in businesses is for creating forms that help collect information. Businesses of all kinds need to gather statistics regarding their customers and input it in their database.

Unlike eForms, handwritten forms tend to complicate things. Not only do they get lost easily, but they also become skewed. Moreover, handwritten forms are very susceptible to damage. It’s the reason more businesses are turning to electronic forms to gather and store information.

But what is an eForm? More importantly, how can electronic forms benefit your business? How do you make the transition from paper-based forms to eForms?

In this definitive guide, we give you eForm 101. Keep on reading to learn more.

What Is An Electronic Form?

An electronic form (eForm) refers to a computerized version of a form that’s paper-based. In various industries, eForms play a significant role in helping a company achieve compliance. They also help provide customers with a record upon the completion of a job.

How can eForms Benefit Your Business?

Most of the processes in your businesses rely on forms. By choosing to use eForms, here are six benefits you stand to gain:

1. You Get To Eliminate Paper from the Start

Eforms are much more than electronic versions of paper forms. They effectively capture and integrate essential data with critical business systems that you can use to run your organization. By capturing and distributing data electronically from the beginning, you can streamline processes, cut costs, and boost efficiency.

2. They Enable Quick Release Of Essential Business Information

The biggest percentage of the information you need to run your business is often trapped on paper. If you can capture all that information and move it into your core business systems, it becomes easier to shorten cycle times and lower your operating costs.

3. Electronic Forms Improve Data Accuracy

Certain features surrounding eForm information such as auto drop-down lists and completion guides help in capturing data accurately. Electronic forms can effectively auto-populate fields based on previously entered data. Since there’s no need to enter data manually from a paper form, there are hardly any data entry errors or losses.

4. Electronic Forms Make It Easy To Automate Workflow

Upon submission, eForms enable the implementation and automation of workflow depending on a company’s business rules. Applications by your personnel can easily be sent to the relevant HR staff for review. Sales orders can be distributed to the manager for approval, while the finance manager can promptly receive credit applications to review and approve.

Implementing an automated workflow in your business increases speed and accountability.

5. Electronic Forms Are Easy To Design and Set Up

You don’t need any programming skills to design, create, or publish eForm details. Currently, there’s a myriad of eForms software solutions that provide helpful features like prebuilt field validation controls, drag, and drop, and group controls. These features ensure highly sophisticated layouts that have hassle-free design and implementation.

6. You Get to Realize a Quick Return on Investment

Electronic forms typically deliver a considerable ROI within months, depending on the number of forms you process in your business every month. Eforms can radically reduce form completion, processing, and correction costs. All other paper-related expenses like supplies, transportation, and storage are altogether eliminated.

Where Can You Use Electronic Forms In Your Business?

Regardless of the type of business you run, there are many areas where you can embrace eForm technology. Here are some of them:

  • Human Resources: You can use eForms for position changes, timesheets, vacation requests, and employee reviews.
  • Accounting: eForms are ideal for expense reports, purchase orders, mileage reimbursement, and capital expenditure reports.
  • Engineering Department: Use electronic forms for engineering change orders, defect tracking, and requests for product enhancement.
  • Manufacturing Department: In this department, electronic forms can help in employee training certification, survey forms, safety inspections, quality assurance, and document change requests.
  • Customer Service: eForms are perfect for survey forms, incident reports, customer service requests, and customer warranty requests.

Choosing the Right eForm Software

As mentioned earlier, there are lots of eForm builder software solutions for businesses of all types and sizes. To select the ideal one for your needs, consider the following factors:

  • Cost – If you operate a small business, a cloud-based solution is best for your business functions. That’s because you won’t need to worry about purchasing or maintaining hardware, and the cost of the software will depend on how many people use it. For a bigger business with particular security concerns, an onsite solution may make more sense.
  • Ease of Use – The primary goal of downloading an app is to simplify tasks. The last thing you want is a software solution that has a steep learning curve. Opt for a solution with a friendly and intuitive user interface, not a technical one that takes you ages to understand.
  • Customization – Every business is unique, so your forms will be unique. Veer away from software that locks you into specific templates and designs. Choose forms that allow you precisely as you visualize them.
  • Customer Support – Before choosing a form builder software solution, take a look at case studies and customer testimonials to get a good idea of what to expect. You can even call their technical or customer service contact to get an experience of how they handle their clients’ issues. Generally, you want an assurance that you can easily reach customer service should the need arise, and that they won’t abandon you as soon as you’ve purchased their software.

Time to Go Paperless

As more companies strive towards becoming entirely paperless, eForms are increasingly becoming the ideal choice for businesses around the globe. Not only does going electronic reduce costs associated with the printing, distribution and storage of paper, but it also improves workflow in your business.

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3 Ways Business is Changing in the Information Age

StrategyDriven Tactical Execution Article |Digital Technology|3 Ways Business is Changing in the Information AgeYou’ve probably heard it countless times before, but every company is a tech company now. The nature of the information age is that if you aren’t keeping up with the latest in digital technologies, even the simplest of businesses can quickly fall behind the competition.

Accessing, analyzing and utilizing information is essential for businesses. Even if you are only running a small side hustle, the more information you have and the more you can manipulate it, the more efficient and successful your business could be.

But knowing that technology will impact your business in the future is not enough. Business owners need more than entrepreneurial flair and a good head for numbers these days, they also need to understand their corporate responsibility, their duty to their customers and, above all else, how to comply with business regulations in their industry. And they need to realize that this is happening now.

Compliance is Key

In the information age, compliance has become a huge part of business. For example, health care isn’t just about diagnosis and treatment any more, it’s also about managing data, maintaining customer privacy and implementing technological systems to improve performance.

As business gets more and more complex, so the law has to keep up. But businesses need to keep up to and a proactive approach to compliance is the best option. For example, a SOC 2 for Healthcare demonstrates an understanding of responsibility and a duty of care to the customer.

Your Customers Know You

The information age has democratized knowledge. For businesses, the information age means that consumer profiles and targeted advertising are more effective than ever before. But increased knowledge goes both ways and consumers are more likely to know about your business too.

Consumers are much more concerned with ethical business practice than ever before because the have access to the information. Companies that fail to live up to their customer’s standards in any way – socially, environmentally, economically – can stand to lose and lose quickly.

Take Responsibility

One of the most important lessons businesses can take from this age is that they have a responsibility. Taking responsibility isn’t just about apologizing and carrying on any more. As consumers have woken up to bad business practices and the law has tightened up, any company reputation ultimately comes down to their sense of responsibility. And, while rebuilding a business reputation might sound easy, it is far easier to do the work first.

All businesses have a responsibility to their consumers to provide a product worth their money but they also have social and environmental responsibilities too. No business can operate in a vacuum and understanding the impact your business has – good and bad – is essential for building a positive impact model to guide your business forward.

The information age has in many ways made doing business more challenging. However, this relatively new landscape is also providing new potential for businesses to behave properly and serve their customers even better. The world is changing and businesses need to keep up!

5 Must-Haves for Successful Compliance Training

Compliance training is critical for the success of an organization. It informs and educates employees on the laws, policies, and regulations that will have an impact on their jobs. It covers areas like anti-harassment, workplace safety, and diversity, among others. So, what makes compliance training successful? Keep on reading and we’ll list down some of the must-haves.

User-Friendly Software

Gone are the days when compliance training was conducted in an in-classroom setting. We are living in a digital age, and hence, training programs are also digital. That said, one of the most important things to keep in mind with such digital compliance training programs is to use the right software. Learners will be able to access training and reading materials online. They can even access compliance blogs, videos, and audio files that can help improve their knowledge.

Looking for a user-friendly enterprise solution and software that can be utilized for compliance training? While the options will be diverse, one that should be on your radar is True Office Learning.

Consistent and Long-Term Implementation

One of the most important for compliance training is for it to be consistent. Meaning, it should not be a one-time thing. Rather, it should be a long-term endeavor. It should be conducted several times to make sure that it will stick. The training should also be regularly refreshed, which will make it possible to reflect the changing policies.

Strong Leadership

To create a culture of compliance and to ensure the success of the compliance training programs, it is important to have strong leadership that is involved. Take note that compliance should be a function from the top to the bottom. Meaning, even the CEO must be part of the compliance training. Plus, the management should have the budget and the tools that are necessary to carry out the compliance training. It should be seen as a valuable investment.

Engaging and Effective Approach

The goal is to implement compliance training in such a way that it will not bore the participants. If it is monotonous, it will be ineffective when it comes to skill and knowledge retention. With this, think of the different ways to make training fun and entertaining. If you are using training software to teach compliance to the employees, it should have a user-friendly interface and culture of gamification must be infused.

Customized to the Needs of the Business

A successful compliance training program is tailor-fitted to the specific needs of the organization and the participants. There is no one-size-fits-all strategy that will work for all the users. Having a customized approach to compliance training starts with the need to determine the target audience to be able to identify what will work best for them. The specific goals of the organization will also have an effect on the way the training will be conducted.

In sum, as discussed above, successful compliance training must have a user-friendly software, long-term implementation, strong and supportive leadership, engaging approach, and tailor-fitted to the needs of the organization.