Get a Handle on Costs with Adminbase

Ab Initio’s Rhonda Ridge, creator of the installer management system AdminBase, explains why cost efficiency is so important and describes how easy it can be for home improvement companies to up their game and boost the bottom line. 

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Cost effectiveness and cost efficiency are two business buzzwords we hear a lot. Some people use them interchangeably when they are two very different things. While cost effectiveness looks at the expenditure versus value of an outcome, cost efficiency is about finding the best way to achieve a result. Cost effectiveness is about getting the job done, while cost efficiency is about getting the job done in the best possible way, for example, by maximising resources and reducing waste. In a tumultuous marketplace, getting rid of wasteful practices and utilising resources in the best possible way can give businesses a serious competitive advantage. To identify what needs improving, businesses first need a good handle on their existing costs, and software is an excellent way to achieve just that. 

Managing day-to-day costs in any business can be difficult, and some are more complicated than others. But keeping track of your costs accurately and regularly is essential to improving efficiency. Implementing an all-encompassing CRM system allows a business to gain insight into its overall operation quickly and easily. The right system can provide easy-to-read reports on any aspect of the business so that managers can quickly see if there are resources that can be better utilised. 

Accurate job costs

AdminBase is an example of one such management system that was designed specifically for installation businesses and has been built around how a home improvement company works. It allows you to capture the cost of all products from suppliers with a link to your accounts package to save double-entering invoices. It also helps you keep track of any supplier back-charge claims and include these in your job costs. Commission payments are also tracked and can form part of the job cost reporting function. AdminBase also manages fitting ancillary items and allocates costs to individual jobs for more accurate gross margin figures per contract. 

Keeping track of all these costs and more in an installation business isn’t easy, but it is vital to success. If you don’t track all your costs, it’s impossible to know what your selling price needs to be. In addition, keeping such a close eye on costs across the business and being able to remove unnecessary processes can help boost motivation among staff, improve productivity, and improve communication across the business as everyone has a clearer understanding of overall business performance. 

A helping hand for installation managers

As well as accurately tracking costs, AdminBase has many features and associated apps that support a more efficient way of working. For example, the latest upgrade to the My AdminBase Diary app, launched at the FIT Show, offers installation businesses even more functionality. 

The update makes it easy for managers to see the appointments assigned to their team members as well as their own. So, for example, an installation manager can view the appointments assigned to fitters and add their own photos to the job to feed back into the contract in AdminBase. This makes it easier for the manager to carry out site visits without the need for a specific appointment in AdminBase. The app also makes it easy to send copies of quotes or surveyor paperwork relevant to a project for immediate use onsite.  The upgrade further streamlines data, increases visibility for relevant users, and offers installation managers and fitting teams alike more control and improved feedback when changes are made to appointments or projects. 

Installation businesses looking to improve the bottom line while removing waste and getting the most out of existing resources will enhance the cost efficiency of their operation. AdminBase can support home improvement companies in achieving this with more visibility over cost and spend data, a clearer picture of which areas of the business have room for improvement, and more information to allow for better decision-making. 

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