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Multinational Pharmaceutical Firm Roche Streamlines Site Inspections with AppSheet-Powered Apps

Paper-based processes often lead to mistakes, data getting lost in spreadsheets, and general inefficiency. But the fact is that’s the way many organizations still work. However, there is a better way. And QREW Technologies can help get you there. QREW enables organizations to optimize their operations by using custom-built mobile apps instead of paper-based systems. And we use the AppSheet platform to do it. Why AppSheet I discovered AppSheet three years ago. With AppSheet I was able to build mobile apps quickly, without having to work through the glitches I found in other no-code products. The AppSheet platform allows organizations to build, test, and deploy solutions quickly, in a fraction of the time when compared with other development platforms. AppSheet is also great because it supports mobile “out-of-the-box” and is accessible offline. It integrates with barcode scanning, mobile cameras, NFC, and geotagging – must-haves for many customers and hard to achieve with competing platforms. In addition to its great platform, AppSheet has a strong team and very responsive customer service. That really blew me away. That’s why I wanted to get involved with AppSheet and joined its partner program. For nearly two years, I worked as an AppSheet development partner. Then I took it to the next level. In November of 2017, I brought in some colleagues and turned my AppSheet consulting work into a formal enterprise. QREW works with SMBs, or departments within large organizations, to solve operational problems with easy to use tools, like AppSheet. Here are a few examples of the work we do. Nonprofit LiveBeyond Digitizes Medical Information LiveBeyond does medical and humanitarian work in Haiti. QREW built – and AppSheet technology powers – its electronic medical record, school nutrition research, and maternal health apps. The EMR app helps hospital staff and volunteers accurately calculate and record the body mass index of clinic patients, catalogue medical history, track diagnoses, and prescribe medication. This data is safely stored and can be used to produce epidemiological reports and gain insights on how to improve the health of the community at large. Nutrition is also the focus of LiveBeyond’s school app. This app tracks diet, BMI, and other factors for a longitudinal study about malnutrition in Haiti. And with the maternal health app, workers can easily record the size, weight, and vital statistics of babies, fetuses, and mothers. The ultimate goal here is to reduce infant mortality. All these apps allow for more accurate and efficient data intake and record keeping, so hospital workers can see more patients, and the people of Haiti have better healthcare experiences. Multinational Roche Operationalizes Inspections Pharmaceutical firm Roche is using an AppSheet-powered app to access whether various sites are suitable for its lab equipment. Such site inspections require field engineers to run through a long checklist of factors. The app QREW built for this program enables site visitors to get through those lists accurately and efficiently. The company can also use the app to keep approved installations on schedule and streamline communications. Roche’s internal IT team could’ve built this app. But AppSheet and QREW went from design specs to fully functional app in a few weeks instead of the many months it would’ve otherwise taken. SMBs Take On the Digital Transformation Challenge QREW solutions based on AppSheet’s platform are also at work at an array of other businesses across the country: from an apple orchard and shop in Wisconsin to a law firm in Michigan to a cabinet company in Pennsylvania. Sacia Orchards uses AppSheet apps to manage the intake of apples, report data, facilitate the fulfillment of orders, and track what shipments came from where. That way, Sacia can get shipments out more efficiently. And if an apple distributor reports a problem (like a listeria outbreak), the company can quickly and easily identify where in the warehouse the apples were located. Having that information can mean the difference between testing the entire warehouse for contamination or just part of it. Seva Law Firm, meanwhile, uses an AppSheet app we created for case management. It had previously used a spreadsheet and Dropbox account for that purpose. The new solution allows the firm to create and track case workflow more easily. It also reduces by 50 to 75 percent the time the firm’s 20 lawyers spend on document generation. As for the AppSheet app we built for Your Remodeling Guys, that enables it to generate customer bids for kitchen carpentry more quickly. Workers in the field simply input the measurements, and the app instantly creates a quote. Fast & Final Thoughts These are just a few examples of how organizations are using the technology around them – like smartphones and web apps – to be more efficient and effective. And with AppSheet, organizations can get their apps running far faster and more affordably than they ever could using in-house IT resources or other no-code platforms. Stefan Quartemont is president and co-founder of QREW Technologies out of College Station, Texas.  

App Reviews: Top 10 Property Inspection Apps for iOS and Android

    Property and home inspection apps allow end-users to increase productivity and save time on paperwork and emails. With advances in smartphone technology, just about everyone now has access to powerful checklist tools with features like annotations, photo documentation, and signature capture at the tip of their fingers. As a potential property inspection app user, you have two options: out-of-the-box solutions and custom-built solutions. Out of the box solutions are designed specifically for a given use case, but can be less flexible. Custom-built solutions like AppSheet can allow for greater personalization and functionality.  10 (+1 Bonus) Property Inspection Apps AppSheet zInspector SnapInspect Property Inspect Property Inspection Manager Happy Inspector Buildium Tap Inspect Chapps Rental Inspector Inspect & Cloud Property Inspection Boss   AppSheet Features: AppSheet's platform allows ordinary users to create robust apps with no code. Common features include automated workflows and notifications, GPS, image capture, signature capture, barcode scanners, charts, email notifications, offline access, and personalized branding. Together, these features can be integrated and synced with with your existing data through common data platforms including: Collectively, AppSheet's functional tools and data integrations allow you to build property inspection apps and other real estate-related apps directly from existing spreadsheets and relational databases. Here's an example of a simple house inspection app you can copy and modify: And here's an example of a property services app: With your data and AppSheet's platform, you can create beautiful apps that work the way you work - collaboratively on the cloud and functionally through spreadsheets. Verdict: Ok, we admit it! We're biased. That said, if you're interested in creating a custom solution that integrates with your existing data, it's hard - dare we say, impossible - to find another tool as versatile, comprehensive, and economical as AppSheet. You can get started with a free trial and find out how AppSheet just might transform the way your team conducts property inspections. Z Inspector Features: Has standard functionality of photo, video, signatures, maps, and offline work. Replaces spreadsheets with "zInspector's customizable, searchable property database." DropBox, Google Drive API integrations. Price: Free trial for single user up to 5 properties. $9-$16/user depending on package. Verdict: zInspector delivers a functional tool at a relatively economical price. The app lacks the polish of some of the other apps we reviewed, but it seems to get the job done. SnapInspect Features: In addition to standard features, SnapInspect shines in the area of templates and reporting with many pre-existing and customizable options. Price: Pricing starts at $49/user and extends to $299/company with enterprise packages beyond for portfolios exceeding 1,500 units. Verdict: SnapInspect is among the priciest options we looked at, but they also do deliver a tested product that's used by many large realtors. If you have the budget, it's worth taking a look at. Property Inspect Features: Provides you standard set of features along with what seems to be strong team management and reporting tools. Website has high polish. Price: $37/solo user to $197/team (up to 10 people) and $499+ for enterprise. Verdict: Along with SnapInspect, Property Inspect offers a strong contender as a premium-grade solution for teams looking for out-of-the-box solutions. Property Inspection Manager Features: Your usual assortment of data capture features along with a slew of real-estate specific data integrations. Price: $300/year for PIM Pro Plus, $499/year for PIM Premium. Unlimited users. Verdict: A unique option out of Australia that looks to be a strong contender for users on Property Tree, REST, GeeDee, Console, Chintaro, and Palace systems. Pricing plan is favorable for larger teams. HappyInspector Features: Effective, colorful UI. Strong reporting. Compelling integrations and API tools. Price: $499/mo for Core. Call for "Plus" pricing. Verdict: HappyInspector's website and app platform are undoubtedly beautiful, but is it really worth the premium cost? That's not up to us decide, but we would encourage you to do your due diligence to make sure this is a product that's really worth it before purchasing. Buildium Features: Buildium is far more than an inspection app. They provide end-around services for both owners and residents including maintenance request tracking, insurance, accounting, and more. Price: Pricing is complicated. There's a ~$200 monthly fee along with an additional $65/mo fee for mobile inspections. Beyond 150 units, you are bumped into their "Pro" tier pricing which is an additional ~20%. Verdict: If you're looking at an end-to-end solution, Buildium's definitely worth taking a look at. If property inspection is what you care about, there are more cost-effective solutions. TapInspect Features: Provides standard photo, video, and notes. As TapInspect launched in 2010, the website seems to be a bit lacking in polish and the UI on the apps look a little dated. Price: $5/report, $60/mo unlimited, or inspection team $60/mo + $30/mo per inspector Verdict: From an initial review, TapInspect would seem to be a pricey option for what seems to be a somewhat dated platform. Chapps Rental Inspector Features: Chapps stands for checking apps. They provide 3 standalone solutions with Rental Inspector, Dorm Inspector, and Building Inspector that provide the your standard array of features. Price: Pricing is a bit convoluted with both a license fee per user of ($5-$10) and a per/report fee ($3-$6). Verdict: If you're looking for an out-of-the-box solution and are willing to pay a premium, Chapps is worth considering. Inspect & Cloud Features: Inspect & Cloud has all your standard photo, video, text, GPS, offline capability features. Price: $49-$199. The per-user cost works out to between $49/mo and $20/mo. Higher priced plans have access to templates and video inspection. Verdict: Overall, the platform seems solid, but it doesn't quite "wow" us given their price points. Property Inspection Boss Features: Their website is thin on details as to what their platform is actually capable of. It would seem to provide fairly standard capabilities with inspection reports as well. Price: AU$525/year for BOSS Clients and AU$575/year for public. Verdict: The platform would seem to get the job done, but it doesn't have any notable advantages over other options. We'll pass on Property Inspection Boss for the time being. Let us know what you think about some of the providers we listed above. We'd love to learn from your insights, thoughts, and questions!

How to Make an Inspection App

Inspections are part of the bread and butter of any field service worker. However, a lot of field workers are still forced to use archaic means to document and record their data. Many companies are looking to mobile apps to not only streamline the process, but make data more readily available throughout companies. Today, we’ll take a look at one of the most popular uses for AppSheet. Businesses of all types live and die by the soundness of their inspection processes. It comes as no surprise then that many businesses use our no-code platform to design powerful, flexible, and agile apps for their inspection processes. It’s time to move on from tracking your inspections on a spreadsheet or—gasp!—with pen and paper. This post looks at how you can use AppSheet to create an inspections app from data stored in Google Sheets that will work on mobile, tablet, and your computer.  Here are the basics of the inspection app we’ll build today: it automates data capture (machine ID, images, and signature etc), pre-fills form fields, and sends notifications through email and Slack. The app is NFC-enabled and includes a bar code scanner, so inspectors won’t have to manually enter machine IDs.  You can check out a pre-built inspection app by clicking on the button below. Keep reading to learn the major steps to building the app so that you can customize it for your own unique processes (we've also included a link to our video series for you to follow along!) Finally, take a moment to watch the recordings of a webinar for an even deeper-dive into the creation of this app. Step 1: Check columns and form settings Launch AppSheet from the Google Sheet add-on: AppSheet will read the column names and pre-set data to the correct types, i.e., Text, Image, Date, Signature etc. Clean up the data and create views: We created an Audit View where auditors can enter responses to all questions about the machines, and a Repair View for the maintenance/technician team to fill out. Adds, updates, deletes: Configure data access so that only certain people can delete data. Step 2: Ensure fast data capture Auto-capture: Audit ID, Auditor Email, and Audit Date are set to auto-capture. Hidden fields and views: Make sure that certain fields or views are hidden if you don't want auditors to edit them. By default, Repair Description field and Repair View are hidden. They are only visible when a machine fails an audit. Drop-down list and auto-fill: Instead of manually typing the Machine ID, inspectors can select an ID from a drop-down list or scan the bar code or NFC tag. Once the Machine ID is entered, Machine Type will be auto-filled. Machine Issue field also has a drop-down list. Auditors can select multiple issues that need to be fixed or add new issues. Divide a long form into 2 sections (Audit and Repair), create slices and views accordingly:  It is much easier to use tabs to navigate a long form. Only show active machines: Those are the ones that need regular inspections. Data filtering: auditors will only see relevant data in repair view. Step 3: Enable notifications Automatically send an email after a new audit is complete. Push Slack notifications when a machine doesn't pass an audit. In your email, you can include everything or just a summary of an audit. For more details, check out these webinars (click on Show More to find time stamps on a certain topic that interests you): AppSheet Office Hours S2E6 AppSheet Office Hours S2E7  

How OperationWorks Uses Process Apps to Automate Site Inspections

Municipalities are often at a disadvantage when searching for operation management applications. On the one hand, cities and towns require access to the same types of powerful solutions that large enterprises use. However, they are typically confined by tight budgets. These are the challenges we face at OperationWorks, where we supply operation management solutions for a variety of organizations across multiple states. Many of our clients are local towns and municipalities that need to carefully track and report where their taxpayer's dollars go. It’s therefore crucial that we keep time and costs at a minimum when developing apps to offer competitive prices that align with our clients’ budgetary needs. At the same time, we must also ensure that our apps perform at the highest possible levels. Our goal is not to meet our clients’ expectations, but to exceed them at every possible turn. For this reason, AppSheet’s platform is one of our favorite tools. By sparing us from the heavy lifting of writing and testing underlying code, we can spend more time focusing on higher level tasks that differentiate our services. This translates into significant savings for our customers. With the help of AppSheet, for instance, we were recently able to reduce the cost of one client’s Municipal application by over $200,000. We are now working on a new version of the app, built with AppSheet, at a fraction of the price and significantly out-performs the former version. Why We Chose AppSheet Our primary goal when searching for an app-building platform was to find a program that would enable end users to create highly-customizable forms and reports, using their data, but this proved to be challenging. We experimented with just about every leading app building product on the market, including programs like Microsoft’s PowerApps and Google’s App Maker. AppSheet is the only company we found that supplied us with all the tools needed to build intuitive, platform-independent data collection forms. AppSheet’s direct connection with Google's G Suite allows us to Develop Custom Add-ons for Google Sheets, Docs, and Forms to supply our clients with all the reporting and data analytics they require. Some programs, it should be noted, charged upwards of $2,000 for a single report. Others proved to be immensely complicated and limited. After an extensive trial and error process, our team was drawn to AppSheet for three reasons: It’s highly flexible: AppSheet integrates with a variety of different cloud storage and spreadsheet providers, two of which include Google and Microsoft Office 365. A big selling point, primarily because it gives our team the ability to integrate with our clients’ preferred systems unlike Microsoft's PowerApps, which forces you to use Excel. The platform is user-friendly: AppSheet’s user interface is easy to navigate, which makes life easier for end users. The platform is also customizable, well designed and has a built-in "Deployment Check." you can feel confident your App is bug-free and ready for deployment. In fact, we have never had a quality issue using AppSheet. It gives you more control: You can use AppSheet to run very simple or complex expressions, depending on your needs. We love AppSheet’s expression builder and tester, which allows users to filter and sort data from multiple spreadsheets. Enabling users to create custom reports on the fly, is very useful for field technicians. Examples of AppSheet in Action Most of our clients use the apps we make to streamline their operations. For example, we designed an app for the City of Waltham’s water and sewage department to help with a process called backflow testing. In plumbing, this refers to the direction that water flows in a pipe. Water that flows in the wrong direction could cause serious contamination issues; individual devices must be inspected at various intervals throughout the year. Cities like Waltham, however, often have thousands of devices in the field that need to be checked on a yearly basis, making it difficult to record progress. The app we designed provides department managers and field workers with a bird’s eye view, via Google Maps, of every location across the City. Each site on the checklist can be modified with special filters, so that team members can provide real-time status updates and notes as they perform inspections. Of course, organizations of all types require cost-effective applications, and so we occasionally work with providers in different industries such as education. We recently designed an app for a large department of an Ivy League University that replaces three manual processes with one seamless solution. Now, instead of entering data manually, technicians can just scan a QR code on the door and check off completed tasks, saving staff members a tremendous amount of time.  I can’t say enough positive things about AppSheet, as the platform has allowed us to lower our costs, and provide more value to our customers. I have more to say about our experience using AppSheet, though, so make sure to check back soon for a close comparison between PowerApps and AppSheet, as well as tips that you should consider when selecting an app-building platform. Read more AppSheet Customer Spotlight stories and learn how AppSheet customers in different industries and roles make fantastic apps: A Sawmill in Uruguay Automates Tracking with Inventory Managment Apps Project Management App: Catalyst Helps Tackle Nigeria's Energy Poverty Field Service & Political Campaign: Big Data Solutions in a Texas Mayor Race Citizen Developers are Workplace Innovators. They build custom apps to improve and optimize work processes in their organizations, introducing innovative ways to "get work done." As citizen development becomes the new normal, it promotes innovation, agility, and flexibility throughout an organization. To learn more about AppSheet and citizen developers, check out the following page:

Track Assets and Run Inspections with These 5 Mobile Apps for Business Operations

  In any business, customer-facing initiatives are critical for driving profit and maintaining presence in the market. But what happens behind the scenes is equally essential-- from tracking inventory to managing customer information, businesses must have processes in place to make sure internal data is secure and easily accessible. Management of business data shouldn't take away from the customer experience. In fact, careful administration of internal assets and processes can actually serve to augment front-facing actions with the use of the right tools. This week we have put together five mobile apps that will help you manage your business' internal processes and track important data. As in all of our apps, these are connected to a backend spreadsheet where all inputted data will end up-- so whether employees are collecting patient information, counting inventory, or inspecting properties, office-based agents are always kept up-to-date with the most current data. Copy and customize these apps today to help streamline your internal business operations. Home Inspector This app is useful for a home inspector who needs to record information about houses being assessed. The user can add photos and notes about each, with the ability to add comments about the status of the room or home in question. Pre-Surgery Checklist The World Health Organization uses a pre-surgery checklist to address surgical safety and minimize the risks associated with surgical procedures worldwide. Translating the checklist to a mobile environment means physicians and care teams can easily fill out the checklist from any location, whether connected to the web or not, and ensure all data is kept safe and secure. Bus Service Agreement This sample app helps a bus driver do a service agreement for a tourism or entertainment bus, making sure that the customer acknowledges the inspection before the bus service is provided. The app captures signatures, images, and an agreement form. Equipment Inventory The Equipment Inventory app helps employees keep track of inventory items and quickly browse and search through those items. The data in the spreadsheet is in sync with the app and users can submit and edit items as needed with a mobile device. Store Inventory The Store Inventory app is a simple tool for a small business to keep track of inventory items where the list is usually kept in spreadsheets. Employees can manage inventory items straight from a mobile device, ensuring that data is kept up-to-date and always synced with the backend data source.