Is SmartTrade right for your business?

Originally designed for trade businesses such as electricians and plumbers, SmartTrade has now proven to be successful in a range of industries, including:

Fire protection
IT Service
Appliance servicing
Insurance repair
Property management

However, like any affordable off-the-shelf application, SmartTrade isn’t the right job management system for all businesses. In assessing any system, ask:

  • Does it handle the "must dos"?
    Implementing off-the-shelf software inevitably involves some workflow changes, usually for the better. Identify the essential features that must be available, but be flexible in non-essential areas. Base the purchase decision on what the software delivers today, and discount promises that functionality will be added in the future, as software developers are notoriously unreliable at delivering on time. Below is a list of functions, asked for from time-to-time, that aren’t included in SmartTrade.

  • Is the business ready to implement an off-the-shelf job management system?
    Even if the job management system suits a business, sometimes the business is not ready. From time to time we find that SmartTrade doesn’t work, despite the business being very similar to many others that use SmartTrade successfully. Almost always the problem lies with the business, such as being so bogged down in fire-fighting that there simply isn’t the time to focus on implementing the new system. See “Tips for implementing an off-the-shelf job management application”.

Expand the sections below to see what SmartTrade does and doesn’t do:

Add a new job
Duplicate an existing job or add a job from a template
Open a new job from inside the calendar view in the schedule.
Via SmartGate, let clients log jobs via the internet 24/7.  
Let casual customers log jobs on-line (must be a client in SmartTrade)  
Select job type (quote or charge-up)
Set a job workflow status.
Enter an occupant (e.g. landlord/tenant situation)
Assign one or more employees to the job.
Allocate responsibility for the job
Set job priority and due date and time.
Use customisable fields to capture data that suits your business
Record job notes
Attach electronic files to jobs (e.g. drawings, correspondence).
See a pop-up note from a client or client site record
*Possible via SmartForms
Find jobs by job number, job name, client, and location.
Find jobs by status, dates, employee, custom fields, client group etc
Use colour coding to identify different categories, statuses and priorities
Automatically record the job history including date and time of key events
Via SmartGate, let clients view job status on-line, including selected notes  
Re-price jobs
Select multiple jobs and bulk edit (e.g. change status)
Bulk archive jobs  
Log work orders and link to jobs
Set jobs to recur at set intervals (e.g. monthly)  
Set workflow status to automatically change on specified events  
Print out or email job sheets  
Text job information to field staff  
Send jobs electronically to staff equipped with SmartTrade Mobile
Receive jobs    
Accept job, or decline or reassign to another employee    
Return jobs to the office    
View (and with some limitations, edit) jobs that have been dispatched to mobile devices  
Select items direct from supplier price lists
Select items direct from MyData(favourites) or create new items
Use kitsets
Speed up costing by creating template jobs or duplicating existing jobs
Monitor gross profit % as you build the costing
Insert headings
Insert subtotals
Move items up and down the grid
Calculate areas and volumes
Create multiple quotes quickly from a costing (but can’t add new quotes once a quote has been accepted)
Create purchase orders and price requests from the costing page
Select the level of detail to show on a quote
Add headers and footers
Set a quote expiry date
Monitor variations on quoted jobs
Find items from MyData (favourites)
Find items from supplier price lists
Import supplier price books and update from time to time
Update buy prices of MyData items from price books
Assign MyData items to user defined categories
Enter custom items (e.g. labour rates, call-out fees)
Create kit-sets (assemblies), including items from different suppliers
Create product categories with default buy and sell pricing and default type
Set item type as material, labour or sub-contract
Allocate invoice item code (to match with an accounting package)
Allocate order item code
Auto record history events
Record actual time and materials
Use kitsets
Add headings
Subtotal items (Mobile can display sub-totals set up in Essential or Ultimate)
Move items up and down the grid
Select items to order or invoice
Create purchase orders and invoices direct from the job sheet, and print or email.
Generate a purchase order number against a job
Re-price jobs
Monitor the gross profit % as the job progresses
Send appointments to field staff equipped with mobile devices  
Edit job and non-job appointments
View schedules of other employees assigned to a job
See the next appointment date
Reschedule jobs by dragging and dropping in the calendar view
Copy and paste appointments to other employees, days etc
View calendars and timelines for multiple employees
Create appointments and make recurring if required
Set pop-up alerts when appointments are due
Set schedule view (day, week etc) and working hours
Print out a schedule view
Send or sync appointments to Google Calendar
Receive appointments from Google Calendar
Share appointments with Outlook
Open a new job from inside the calendar, including from a template
Open a ‘floating schedule’ and drag to a second monitor
Enter time by job and activity
Use timer to record time
Send an email on start and/or finish of an activity
Round timesheets (e.g. to nearest 30 minutes)
Run timesheet reports by period, activity, employee, job and labour rate
IMS Payroll
ACE Payroll
If you have another payroll system provided it allows data to be imported then its very likely we can design an Advanced Report to enable timesheet information captured in SmartTrade to be exported to your payroll package.
View location of devices on a map    
View the route taken by an employee on a specified day    
Restrict timesheet input to a job if the employee isn’t within a specified distance of the job location    
View the location of every timesheet entry    
Add new clients easily, including multiple sites, default job pricing, payment terms, and notes
Add contacts
Import client details from a connected accounting program  
Find clients by name, address, and phone numbers
Find clients by contact and custom field
Set up Client groups
Add user-definable (custom) fields to the client record
Attach electronic files to client records (e.g. drawings, correspondence)
Automatically record changes to client records
Invoice a 3rd party
Email invoice to the customer or to a 3rd party
Capture the customer's signature
Select the detail to show on an invoice, including variations
Add invoice headers and footers, including using pre-set text
Select invoice format from multiple templates
Set invoice status as draft of confirmed
Consolidate multiple draft invoices for a given customer
Edit tax rate by line item
Handle retentions
Set invoices to recur at set intervals (e.g. monthly)
Bulk email invoices or dispatch via Smeedi
Automatically record invoice events
Display early payment discount
Handle point of sale
Find suppliers by name etc
Add new suppliers easily, including multiple branches, contact names, and notes
Download files from suppliers (where available) or key in  
Compare total value of a suppliers’ invoice to the order created in SmartTrade  
Electronically post line items from suppliers’ invoices to job sheets, including when an invoice relates to multiple jobs  
Put supplier invoices on hold to stop posting to jobs until approved  
Download price books from various suppliers and import  
Export price-books from SmartTrade to an accounting package  
Add user-definable (custom) fields to the supplier record
Automatically record changes to supplier records
Find orders by order #, job #, supplier
Find orders by person ordered by, status, dates
Find orders by client name, site address
Create orders by selecting items
from costings
from job sheets
Enter delivery address, date required, date received, delivery docket #
Enter date required
Consolidate identical items in an order
Issue purchase order numbers
Print or email orders
Print orders (can preview on Mobile)
Email orders
Export orders to an accounting package
Add notes
Find price requests by price request #, job #, person created by, supplier, status, dates
Create a price request from a job sheet or costing page, and send to the designated supplier or an alternative supplier
Enter date required and date received
Duplicate a price request
Create an order from a price request
Copy the items in a price request to a costing page
Print or email a price request
Add notes
Add new employees, including phone numbers and notes  
Use user definable fields  
Set up logical employee groups  
Connect the employee’s Google calendar to the SmartTrade schedule
Assign multiple labour rates  
Add user defined fields  
Add notes  
Automatically record changes to employee records
Establish security groups and assign privileges to each group  
Allocate employees to security groups  
Set user name and password
Limit user access by module (e.g. may not have access to Ultimate)  
Lock out users if necessary
Export client invoices from SmartTrade  
Export supplier invoices from SmartTrade  
Share client and supplier data  
Export job numbers (only to MYOB)  
Export price-books  
Find assets by client, location, description, status, condition, action, type, date (e.g. replacement), asset register #, serial #, model #, job #, custom field
Add assets including supplier, brand/make, model name, model #, asset type, description, serial #, barcode, and asset register #
Record condition data (status, condition, action, installation date, estimated life, replacement date)
Record financial data (Purchase date, cost, depreciation rate [straight line], accumulated depreciation, book value)
Auto-generate asset register numbers
Assign assets to locations in client sites
Use custom fields
Create asset templates and duplicate assets
Log work orders against assets
Link SmartForms to assets
Identify assets via bar scanning
Auto-record changes to asset records
Find work orders by client, location, work order #, action, assigned to, description, status, condition, action, type, date (e.g. logged), asset register #, serial #, model #, job #, custom fields)
Add work order including client, location, logged by,  date/time logged, date/time closed, priority, status, assigned to, estimated cost, job # and name
Link a work order to an asset
Record approval data (Approved by, purchase order #, approval code, due date, budget, note)
Attach electronic files to work orders
Attach notes to work orders
Auto-record changes to work orders
Create a work order depending on the status of a SmartForm when it is completed and signed off, e.g. a failed test sheet.
Customise reports
Create progress claim invoices, including retentions
Van stock – a report that allows you to track van stock, the van stock report can also be used for basic warehouse stock control
Export invoice data to an accounting package that handles inventory (if the item codes in SmartTrade match those in the accounting package)
Live inventory (track quantities and values of items in one or more locations, including inwards goods, dispatch, and stocktaking)
A word of caution! Think carefully before implementing live inventory in a small business.
Export invoice data to an accounting package that handles inventory (if the item codes in SmartTrade match those in the accounting package)
SmartTrade Mobile allows you to take photos on the smart device camera and attach the photos to jobs, assets or SmartForms, these are then returned to SmartTrade Essential or Ultimate in the office.
SmartTrade Mobile allows SmartForms to be attached to a job, or to an asset on a job, then completed in the field and uploaded to the cloud. A notification can be emailed from the field to the client. The SmartForm results can be viewed via SmartTrade Essential or Ultimate in the office and forwarded to the client.
The client can be given permission to view SmartForm results in the cloud via our SmartGate online portal. The SmartGate portal is a SmartTrade Ultimate feature, users need to have at least one SmartTrade Ultimate licence.
Key clients can be given permission to log jobs on the SmartGate online portal and track the status of their jobs. This is not designed to be a booking service open to the general public. The SmartGate portal is a SmartTrade Ultimate feature, users need to have at least one SmartTrade Ultimate licence.
Text messages can be sent from SmartTrade Essential or Ultimate in the office to clients or field staff. SMS users purchase credits from Clickatell, the world’s largest SMS provider which means SMS credits are very competitively priced, plus you only pay for the credits you use. A return text message service can also be provided, however this requires the user to have a dedicated phone line.
Dispatch appointments from the SmartTrade schedule to the Google Calendar schedule on smart devices, great for sending appointments to your staff on their smart phones. It is not yet possible to sync appointments from the smart device’s Google Calendar back to the SmartTrade schedule.
Kitsets is a time saving feature that allows you to group child items for assemblies you regularly use into a single kitset item. Kitsets simplify quoting and invoicing, they also make sure you don’t forget any cost lines. For example a kitset item might include the light fitting; luminaire; light switch/wall box; cable and labour.
Run reports designed from a job management perspective
Set a default email template for a report
Set a default stamp for a report
Export reports and data from grids to an Excel spreadsheet or Word document
Customise reports using the inbuilt report writer
Use Advanced Reports (written by SmartTrade to your specification)
Set tasks to run in the background (e.g. bulk archive jobs)
Create custom lists
Create SMS templates
Create email templates, including embedding data fields
Save sent emails to a sent folder in SmartTrade