08 Mar 10 Essential Benefits of Our Vendmanager Mobile App
10 Essential Benefits of Our Vendmanager Mobile App
Back in 2008, when it was first developed, Vendmanager was built around the core values of:
- Delivering a reliable, responsive and robust product for back-office users
- Creating a mobile platform that can capture all of an operator’s tasks efficiently …
- All whilst providing maximum visibility and clarity across the entirety of a vending business.
Over the last 14 years since, we have continually adapted and developed our mobile app – always staying ahead of the curve as vending itself has evolved. During this time, we have never stopped looking at the demands placed upon our clients, and listening to the requests they share with us. We have even created proprietary hardware to make visiting vending machines ever more efficient and reduce an operator’s time on-site still further.
Our overarching goal throughout is to help improve a vending operator’s overall efficiency. So, how do we do that, you may ask? Just check below.
Here are ten essential benefits of using our Vendmanager Mobile app.
1. All of an Operator’s and Engineer’s Tasks in One Single App
Operators and engineers need to remain adaptable within and across your business at all times. From visiting a vending machine, fixing faults, delivering wholesale orders, completing questionnaires, and transferring stock, to completing a stock take, and so much more – it all demands flexibility. We understand that full well.
That’s why we have one Vendmanager mobile app: a single tool that allows each employee to do any combination of tasks throughout the day. This empowers our clients to:
- maximise flexibility across the team out in the field
- ensure all of the work they carry out is captured in Vendmanager
- prevent the need to use third-party apps (reducing cost and complexity, and keeping data accessible to all).
In addition, all the information collected via Vendmanager Mobile is transferred seamlessly within Vendmanager giving you complete visibility/clarity of each and every employee’s activities throughout the week.
2. Complete Clarity of Every Visit – from the First Minute to the Last.
Vendmanager Mobile feeds data seamlessly into Vendmanager as employees carry out their working day. For example, as an operator completes a visit to a vending machine or micromarket, the detail appears in Vendmanager within a few minutes. You can see everything you need to, including time taken to complete the visit, stock fill levels and final levels, and brand and price changes completed on the visit, with a scheduled set of photos to show the vending machine as they finish their tasks.
Vendmanager Mobile and Vendmanager together allow you to oversee every employee as they work through their daily tasks. You can ensure that they are completing the work expected and planned out for them within their time and to the high standards that you set, and your clients deserve.
Combine this with our extensive reporting suite, and it is straightforward to manage your KPIs and SLAs within a few clicks, at any point of any day.
3. Increasing Efficiency and Reducing Errors with Datakey
As Vendmanager Mobile continued to evolve, we identified a major opportunity to take this slick and easy-to-use mobile app, which was already simplifying and accelerating previously complicated tasks, and go one step further. In 2018 we designed and introduced our own proprietary hardware to partner with Vendmanager Mobile: Datakey.
Datakey has revolutionised visiting vending machines over the last five years, unlocking more data even faster than ever before. Within 30 seconds of an operator walking up to a vending machine and plugging it in, Datakey will download the data directly from the machine, and transfer it via Bluetooth to Vendmanager Mobile. Depending on the machine setup in Vendmanager, Datakey will:
- populate the required meter readings
- update the fill and final levels for each selection
- even check the prices of each selection and correct any exceptions.
Whether you would like to collect 2 meters or 10 meters, Datakey retrieves a full audit every visit, so you can access even more data without adding to the operator’s time.
And increasing operator efficiency is only the beginning! Datakey does so much more, including reducing meter errors, and ensuring your cash reconciliation is tighter than ever before.
4. Manage your Operators and Engineers on the Move with Supervisor Mode!
Routing and moving visits are easily controlled within Vendmanager.
But sometimes you need to reassign visits while on the move, and your supervisor might not have access to Vendmanager via a laptop. This is why Vendmanager allows you to elevate certain employees to be a service team leader, an operations team leader, or both. Nominating an employee as a team leader enables an additional section on Vendmanager Mobile, allowing an employee to move an individual or multiple service calls and/or operator visits between numerous employees.
As the supervisor makes the changes, they are reflected on the employees devices and appear on the dashboard modules within a few seconds. This gives your team leaders the power to manage sickness, holidays and unexpected scenarios across multiple employees from the very same app they already use day in, day out.
5. Decreasing Time on Site with Single Walk
Imagine the scene. Your route operator has just pulled up outside the customer’s location – a food manufacturing plant. There are three buildings, and each has three machines; hot drinks, snacks and cans/bottles. Without telemetry integration, the route operator would park the van, walk to the first set of machines, count stock in each spiral, record the required stock, take the readings, walk back to the van and pick the stock needed for that building. Then return to the machines and fill. And repeat the whole process for buildings 2 and 3. That’s six walks to and from to fill up nine machines.
With telemetry integration, Datakey and Vendmanager Mobile, the route operator pulls up outside the customer’s building. They update their phone, and within a few seconds, Vendmanager Mobile receives the latest sales data for all the machines on site. Their mobile app is automatically populated with each machine’s stock requirements given either as a total or broken down by each machine. The route operator takes the appropriate stock to the first set of machines, takes readings, fills machines, walks back to the van. Depending on the number of items required for each machine, the operator could achieve all nine machines in one single walk, but they should do it within three walks to and from the machines at the absolute maximum.
Imagine the time saving across 15 machines a day!
6. Relief Operating Could Not be Easier
Relief operators have one of the most challenging jobs out of your whole team in the field. They need to remember multiple sites, parking locations, machine locations, machine keys, important contacts at each site, door codes, stock requirements, and so much more.
To ensure relief and route operating is as straightforward as possible, Vendmanager Mobile stores all critical information for sites, machines and micromarkets.
Any operator or engineer can view their tasks for the day as a list or on a map and be directed straight to the site by selecting which third party app they would like to use for their navigation. Once they arrive at the site, they’ll find all the essential information at their fingertips. Door codes? Parking locations? Photos of the site and the individual machines? These are all available, on hand, within Vendmanager Mobile.
This allows operators to go to a site with confidence, even when they have visited rarely or never before. They’ll have access to as much information as the regular route operator builds up and remembers from visiting regularly.
7. Comprehensive Service Call Detail for You, your Engineers, and your Customers
Service calls can vary from one job to the next, unlike completing a day of operating visits. So, ensuring the required information is to hand for the engineer, your customers and all of your team is always a critical challenge.
That’s why Vendmanager Mobile makes things as easy as they can be, improving outcomes and increasing efficiency.
When a service call is created by the engineer or operator on Vendmanager Mobile, or the office team on Vendmanager, an engineer will be able to:
- see the details that were taken, including who reported the fault
- check whether the parts or labour are chargeable
- arrive with a good understanding of the problem that has been reported.
They can also view the service call history of the machines on the site to check for repeat faults before interacting with the service call.
Once they have opened the call they can select the fault, fix and parts fitted based on a pre-defined list controlled in Vendmanager. They then add in their engineer comments so that the full detail of the call can be translated back within the service call breakdown on Vendmanager and within the reporting suite.
As engineers interact with service calls, update the call status and complete their service calls in real-time, Vendmanager Mobile allows us to use this data in multiple ways for the benefit of you and your customers. For example, we can send automatic updates to a contact within your client’s organisation to update them on the progress of the service call, or automate the service call invoicing based on the settings and price schemes you have assigned to your customer base.
8. Prevent Duplicate Visits
Operators may manage a combination of over 40 different vending machines and micromarkets every single week. Interacting with each one of them throughout the week, performing replenishment tasks, collecting cash, managing the waste, completing service calls and delivering stock to your customers. Vendmanager Mobile ensures that as an operator performs any of those tasks, they are alerted to any potential issues from the visit or additional tasks that may be required.
For example, the operator may have entered in a meter reading incorrectly or entered a cash bag number that is the same as a bag number they have already used previously. Warnings to an operator indicating a potential mistake are displayed clearly, and if it is mandatory for the visit, they will be required to complete the task concerned before they can complete the visit to the machine and the site.
In a situation where your operator notices that the machine adjacent to the one they are visiting also needs to be replenished, or looks like it has a potential issue, Vendmanager Mobile ensures prompt appropriate action. The operator can create and complete a service call on the spot if it is a simple fault, or create the call for the engineer if it is more complicated and ad-hoc a visit to the machine to replenish the stock.
9. Keep your Stock in Check
From replenishing machines and removing waste, to transferring stock to and from the warehouse, Vendmanager Mobile adds value at each step of the process, with data and actions documented and detailed within Vendmanager itself.
If an employee has changed a brand in a selection, they have to allocate whether the brand and units that were already in the selection are being removed or the new brand is being filled behind the current brand. If they are wasting items from the machine they have to perform a separate waste task so that Vendmanager can report on the number of waste visits per employee and the items that were moved to waste.
Vendmanager Mobile covers all of the physical tasks an employee might have to perform with their stock, including transferring stock between one operator and another (say where an operator might have run out of stock but is closer to a colleague than coming back to the main depot).
All of these features enable you to keep your stock accurately in check, and ensure operators are within their stock take tolerance each month. And because Vendmanager Mobile allows for partial stock takes, some of our clients have been successful in reducing the frequency of full stock takes, and replacing them with partial stock-takes on certain categories each month.
10. Visibility for you and Even More Clarity for your Customers
We understand that communication with your clients is of paramount importance. Providing them with complete clarity to show you are delivering against your high standards needs to be both effective and easy to do. With the combination of Vendmanager and Vendmanager Mobile, we can help provide this clarity in multiple ways.
For example, you can trigger automatic notifications to your customers to update them on the progress of service calls and Wholesale Orders undertaken using our Vendmanager Mobile app.
Service Calls, visits and wholesale orders can all be displayed at the end of the visit, providing the customer with an overview of the completed tasks before both the employee and customer add their signatures to sign off the work completed.
Combined with the ability for operators and engineers to take photos during a visit, any queries from your customer become far easier to discuss (and resolve) as you have the photographic evidence from the visit to underpin the expansive detail available directly from Vendmanager.
Do You Want to Know More?
We Love Vendmanager Mobile
And our customers love the impact of Vendmanager Mobile on their business even more. If you would like to hear more about the benefits of Vendmanger Mobile, please get in touch.