This is a guest post from Catherine Putnam, President of Stella Software.
Catherine (Cathy) Putnam joined the portable storage industry in October 2017 as Director of Sales for MI-BOX Southern New Hampshire. Recognizing a need for a better portable storage management product, Cathy’s team invested in the creation and development of a fully customized software product known today as Stella Software.
Interested in learning more? Here are our top 3 reasons to use portable storage software as 2022 kicks off.
1. Efficiency can save you time and money
Automating a business takes time upfront, but the change is worth it. If properly automated from a sales, operations and billing standpoint, you’ll benefit from hours of time savings a week. You can minimize human error and focus on what’s important by using software that provides:
- Lead follow up (maximizing your investment in filling the pipeline).
- Confirmation calls (tightening communication with customer/driver).
- Sales strategy & growth (outside sales, relationships with contractors, new promotions, and more).
Without software to help automate your business, you’ll be left:
- Managing disparate processes & systems.
- Dealing with frustrated customers.
- Searching for containers and driving to depots to check inventory.
- Creating invoices and following up to receive payments from past-due balances.
2. You’ll know your inventory
If you’re just getting started in the portable storage business, you may not have yet experienced losing a container as you made a handshake deal 5 years ago, why a container is damaged, or where the driver should find the container. We’ve all been there! You may even have multiple depots and with no idea which has which containers and what their status is. You’re spending time driving, counting, checking, and paying your driver(s) to do this unnecessary work. That means you’re wasting both time and money.
When you automate with software, you’ll be able to:
- Quickly access your inventory by size or status.
- Use real-time data to properly forecast the purchase of containers.
- See the historical data on where a container has been.
- Filter data by status to pull a quick list for repairs.
- Add notes for the drivers with details, like door direction, container placement, storage, and more.
3. You can enhance customer service
Some feel that software de-humanizes the customer experience. In reality, it does the complete opposite. If used properly, it enhances how you position yourself as the expert to your customers, but guiding them through a tricky sales or rental process.
Software also helps to mitigate human error by recording important details, like where to place a container and how to access the property. Additionally, recording notes about the customer and what they need (straps, dolly, shelving, and etc) ensures you’re prepared. Knowing this information ahead of delivery will only impress your customers.
In all, software allows you to focus on the customer and their needs, instead of being overwhelmed by manually having to give quotes, invoice, call drivers, check inventory, and schedule deliveries.