As 2021 draws to a close, it’s time for us to take a look at the year that’s been and reflect on some of the achievements you’ve made this year. It has been a long year with lots of ups and downs but now, as you’re easing into the holiday season, it’s time to relax and recover from all of your hard work. It’s also the perfect time to streamline business processes using some of the cool features we’ve released this year and get ready for 2022.
So what are we waiting for? Let’s recap some of the 2021 highlights and how these features can help set you up for success in 2022.With over 23 releases and 66 features and improvements within simPRO itself...we’ve been busy!
Improving the Way simPRO Works for You
Workflow improvements can often go unnoticed, but there are some things we’ve been working on in the background to improve your interactions within simPRO. While the list of improvements is a little too long to list one-by-one, some of my favorite items include:
- Set prebuilds as favorites
- Improved Gantt/Task Dependencies
- Advanced timeline notes
- Assign multiple field staff to jobs
- Improved Employee and Contractor Licences
These features were designed to save you time and keep you up to date with what’s happening within your business. They give you the power to view jobs and quotes at glance, see exactly what needs to be done and when, and do things in bulk so you have more time to spend with your family this holiday season, and next. As your business grows, some workflows can become inefficient and time consuming, for you and your staff. By spending some time improving your company’s workflows during the quieter periods, you’ll improve accountability and be well informed about your business and where it stands moving into the new year.
Getting On Top of Your Finances
Whether it’s helping you get payroll out on time, keeping up-to-date with the latest government tax regulations, or providing you with an integration to take payments, this year has been a big one in the accounting space. Thanks to the 2021 updates, you can now add “overdue” stamps to your invoices, the ability to quickly identify outstanding invoice totals, and multi-currency support for contractors but, most notably, our recent Xero Timesheet Integration. simPRO timesheets can now be posted directly to Xero to reduce manual data entry during pay runs* (*Not available in the USA and Canada as Xero Payroll is not supported in these regions). The integration features essential timesheet functionality to help you optimise your payroll workflow. Read the Reduce Payroll Stress with Xero Timesheets Updates blog for some tips and tricks for setting up.
Communication is Key
What’s a better way to start 2022, than with a New Year’s resolution to improve your communication skills? Set yourself up for success by implementing some of simPRO’s recently released communication features. What’s that saying about habits? Something about taking 21 days to form into a habit? So let’s make this time count!
Want to notify your field staff that they’ve been assigned a new job or task? Earlier in the year we released pop-up notifications to help you do this. Quickly and easily set up pop-up notifications to send to your office employees when you assign them to new tasks.
And, with the new and recently released Targeted Notifications improvements, there are even more possibilities. Reclaim hours of time spent on daily updates and enhance customer experience by keeping everyone notified at every step of the journey. Boost productivity, take action on purchase orders and build stronger customer relationships with automated communications. Once these are set up you’ll be well on your way to achieving your communication goals.
We’ve Been Listening to Your Ideas!
This year has seen a lot of action in the Ideas Portal, and while we weren’t able to make every idea happen, it was important to us to listen to our customers and implement ideas where possible. The top ideas for the year, submitted by you, included things like the Notifications Improvements, Overdue Stamps on Invoices, Custom Job Card Templates and more.
Fun Fact: Of the top 20 customer ideas submitted in the Ideas Portal, five are in progress and 13 have been delivered in 2021.
If you’ve got an idea that you’d like to see implemented, head over to our Ideas Portal and submit your idea.
Add-On to Make Life Easier
Data Feed, Takeoffs, IoT and simPRO Mobile have all had their triumphs this year too!
The Data Feed Add-On extracts data from emails and attached documents to automatically generate new workflows in your simPRO build and save time on manual entry. While Data Feed has many applications, some of the most recently released capabilities include the ability to receive a packing slip and receipt multiple purchase orders in a CSV file. These can help you and your team save a significant amount of time on data entry each week. In fact, our research showed us that after Data Feed is implemented, companies’ time spent on manual data entry per month is reduced by 1,400 hours!
Internet of Things (IoT)
How can IoT help your business in the new year? Well, if you’re in the HVAC or facilities management sectors, air quality is a really big topic of interest at the moment, but IoT sensors can also help with monitoring the temperature in a food storage area, identify the presence of water in a critical area such as a server room, track the air quality in working environments such as commercial offices or building sites. IoT can have endless possibilities, so if you’re looking to expand your business in the new year, reading up about IoT and its capabilities could be of use to you.
And our IoT solution just keeps getting better! This year, we welcomed the following updates to simPRO IoT:
- Send mobile SMS notifications to more numbers
- Download dashboards
- Option to create jobs when acknowledging an alarm and more!
This year simPRO Takeoffs was born. And, from the beginning of beta, to launch, to now, there have been some significant changes, improvements and milestones. Takeoffs allows you to associate your drawings or ‘take off’ directly with your simPRO projects, use your catalogue and pre-builds, mark up drawings and tons more. Even since our Takeoffs Launch blog, there have been a ton of new features released. With these features, you can now easily set properties against items such as type, size, colour and symbols for catalogue and pre-build items. There have also been a lot of new symbols added and there have been important changes to the way Takeoffs looks for you. But still, the list goes on!
Tip: Get ready for the new year by setting up your catalogue items, pre-builds and symbols so you can be ready to take off in the new year with Takeoffs.
simPRO Mobile Flexes to Your Field Workforce
Did you know that simPRO Mobile went to a whole new level in 2021? Thanks to this year’s updates, simPRO Mobile now includes:
- Quoting in the Service Module, enabling your staff to close more sales in the field
- The functionality to add photos, build quotes and maintain safety requirements through audits
- The functionality to add and edit cost centres all within the Service module
There’s so much more that you can do in simPRO Mobile that empowers your people to self manage projects and jobs entirely from the field. Keep an eye out early next year as we launch even more features in simPRO Mobile including the much anticipated enhancements to ‘Security Groups’. The Security Group update will give you the ability to set individual permissions so you can choose what your field staff can see within the app.
There is no better time to move any Connect app users over to simPRO Mobile. We’ve even developed a course dedicated to helping you migrate from Connect over to simPRO Mobile. It couldn't be easier!
Supporting You Now and Into the Future
We spent a lot of time this year improving our products so that you can improve, grow and thrive. We’ve been hard at work creating valuable resources to help get you started with the newest features.
Want to learn more about the Xero Timesheet Integration? Visit the Help Guide to cover all your bases. Finding the new Targeted Notifications a bit confusing? We’ve got an extensive Walk Me Through available in the help menu in simPRO. Takeoffs giving you strife? The new ‘Quick Help’ icon will explain the ins and outs. For even more help with Takeoffs, simply click the ‘Need Help Getting Started?’ button for a full Walk Me Through.
You can also access simPRO’s free Learning Toolbox courses to become an expert.
The Learning Toolbox is a FREE online training platform for all simPRO customers and their staff. The courses are interactive, self-paced and can be used to help upskill staff. Register for simPRO's Learning Toolbox.
simPRO Tip: Look out for the Quick Help icons within your simPRO build - they’ll direct you to useful articles in the Help Guide about the features and functionalities within simPRO.
The Help Guide is always available with articles and videos to answer your questions about all things simPRO. You can visit the Help Guide here, or navigate to it from the Help menu in simPRO.
If you’re looking for additional assistance on any of the functionality simPRO offers, simPRO’s Implementation Consultants can provide on-site and online training for your team. You can access training by contacting support.
Moving Into 2022
We hope that you’ll find some of these new features and improvements helpful. Don’t forget, now’s a great time to improve your workflows, set goals and implement some new notifications and processes so you’re ready for success in 2022.
And, we’ll be right there with you, working on more features to help you and your business smash your goals. Want to see what we’ve got planned for next year? Check out our Product Roadmap.
Thanks for your support this year, we look forward to growing with you again in 2022.