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RSK Property Maintenance
01-07-2013, 04:45 PM
What do you guys write down your addresses and appointments in? since I've been driving i've just been using small notebooks works great, and the notebook gets torn up after about 4 years or use. I just bought a nice leather bound one at staples yesterday which should work equally as well and be organized. I also use a notebook to keep track of my accounts and who is paid and not paid, but in november I adopted landscapebilling.com per goldpro's suggestion and I love it. but i needed something more organized for my to write down voicemail's and addresses for estimates. pictures would be great too.

http://i27.photobucket.com/albums/c169/ryan818/th_photo_zps1ece11bf.jpg (http://s27.beta.photobucket.com/user/ryan818/media/photo_zps1ece11bf.jpg.html)

http://i27.photobucket.com/albums/c169/ryan818/th_photo1_zpse90e98be.jpg (http://s27.beta.photobucket.com/user/ryan818/media/photo1_zpse90e98be.jpg.html)

http://i27.photobucket.com/albums/c169/ryan818/th_photo2_zpsa854b503.jpg (http://s27.beta.photobucket.com/user/ryan818/media/photo2_zpsa854b503.jpg.html)

http://i27.photobucket.com/albums/c169/ryan818/th_photo3_zpse04a85c8.jpg (http://s27.beta.photobucket.com/user/ryan818/media/photo3_zpse04a85c8.jpg.html)

kandalawncaremgr
01-07-2013, 04:53 PM
Hey have you experienced any problems with landscapebillng. Im having nothing but issues. And there customer service. Ha they never respond back

cpllawncare
01-07-2013, 07:40 PM
I have one notepad for that I keep all the customer info on, it has the lead source, the date and time it came in, name address and contact info, I get this info as soon as the customer calls it's the very first thing I ask. Next I have a day timer that all appts get put in, that's all I really need until the initial meeting, at which I have a cutomer notes notebook, I write down all pertinent info they give me while doing the walkthrough. If they sign up I have a professionaly printed service agreement they sign, one copy goes to them and I keep a copy. Shake hands, say thank you and start collecting money LOL kinda.

zechstoker
01-07-2013, 09:45 PM
I keep a customer list (names, numbers, addresses) in my phone that's updated with new accounts once a month. It gets updated on the computer at the office, and then emails it as a PDF to all technicians/crew members. As for stuff on paper, I have a list printed off the computer once a month that shows the balances for all lawn accounts.

If I need to write notes and customer info down while I'm in the truck, I have a calender book for that. It's one of the ones that shows time slots (per hour) for each day. If I don't use that, I just use the memo pad app on my phone.

alldayrj
01-07-2013, 09:56 PM
I use legal pads on one of those metal clipboards. I had to condition myself that paper is cheap and i write the full name number address etc job measurements info, diagram. Then draw a bold line separating the next estimate. I use reminders in my iphone a lot and i also keep a full size planner for scheduled estimates and recording guys hours. This way its clear to anyone who reads it even though i write in chicken scratch.
Keep in mind i don't do maintenance
I'll try and get pics tomorrow.
Posted via Mobile Device

Steiner
01-07-2013, 10:32 PM
I use these pre-made pages for each job. I just keep them in the contractor clipboard, when a estimate rolls in I have this system:

1. Put down basic info, address ect. of call. Fill in schedule to meet on paper. Plug into iphone calendar with alert.

2. Go to estimate, fill in entire sheet while talking to customer. Put into binder of all estimates after scanning into PDF and put into dropbox so it is available to my phone, laptop, etc.

3. If i get the job I then I create a customer data file in evernote with the date, times and work done along with what I charged. I then place the estimate PDF file in the evernote file and I am done.

The beauty of the system is my evernote system. I can type into my phone the customers name and instantly get all the information I ever needed about them. I use my ipad in the field with cell connection to constantly update customer files. I feel like I have the best of both worlds with the paper and then the scanning.

-Chris

weeble67
01-07-2013, 11:07 PM
I work as a cop, so I have the aluminum tin that I carry preprinted forms in. I duplicate so that I can provide a handwritten estimate. If they say it is a go, I then print and mail them two contacts for signing, one for me and one for their records.

cdqat1432
01-08-2013, 12:05 AM
I have the aluminum binder now and it drives me crazy. Need to remember estimate papers, notebook paper, a pen etc. Then i have to keep track of all that paper. There is quite a bit, as in the spring i do 2-3 estimates per day.
Going with a tablet in the spring. I can still have the old school "legal pad" and "pen", my trusty fill in the blank carbonless copy estimate worksheet, a calculator, downloadable price lists from the nursery, the mulch and topsoil price list and the local equipment rental house Iist. I can pull up pictures of jobs I've done and pictures of trees and shrubs for zones 4-5.
The best part about the tablet is that it saves time and money. I can either print it out right there or email it on the spot. No more back to the office so I can type it out, print, envelope, stamp and mail or even worse, drive back to drop it off. I can' t tell you how many times I got the job because I was the only guy to show up or the only one to get them the estimate. I think a tablet would make me even more efficient and able to get the jobs.

cpllawncare
01-08-2013, 12:19 AM
I'm seriously thinking about going Ipad & Iphone that way I can have everything everywhere all the time. It gets crazy in the spring for sure trying to keep up with everything.

weeze
01-08-2013, 12:35 AM
i have a folder similar to yours. it never leaves the house though. i have a notebook for customers in it. i put their name, address, phone number, how often i cut and what i charge under their name. i have another notebook i keep track of expenses in. i have another notebook in there i keep track of when i was paid and how much and who paid me. i update things every day. i don't put it off and let it build up. if i get paid i then go check it off on the calendar i have. i buy something i write it down as soon as i get home. i keep all my receipts in a shoebox. it takes less than 5min a day to keep everything updated daily.

as far as keeping track of schedule i use one of those big desktop calendar things. i write down what i'm doing on each day and i check it off when done and i check it off again when i'm paid for that job. makes it easy to keep up with everything. i keep a seperate notepad in the truck in the glovebox to write down addresses and such when people call me while i'm out working.

i keep every customers name and number in my iphone as well. you could also use the calendar on the iphone if you wanted to but i don't do that at this time. the desktop calendar works for me as 5 yards is a full 8hr day here. sometimes 3 yards is an 8hr day. some of them are 3acres in size. the days you cut those you many only cut 2-3 yards that day. if you cut small yards all day then you may not have the space to fit 10 customers names in one box on the calendar lol.

i don't get all complicated with it. i don't use fancy computer software or anything. i'm solo so it's overkill to do that. if you have a big company then it's probably necessary in order to keep track of everything.

cpllawncare
01-08-2013, 12:36 AM
RSK,
We both probably need to ask some of the techie guys what would be best, sounds like your like me at a crossroads and truly need to get away from the pen and paper and move into the 21st century, just not sure what is the best route to go. I've always been a windows kinda guy, and have tried to use the apple system but it seems so foreign yet better at the same time.

cpllawncare
01-08-2013, 12:42 AM
Jason,
You have a Iphone why not get a Ipad as well and eliminate most of the paper work, just curious seems to make sense, not sure though?

cpllawncare
01-08-2013, 12:47 AM
I just want a system that integrates everything together. billing ,routing, estimating, customer info etc etc! Is there such an animal?

RSK Property Maintenance
01-08-2013, 01:57 AM
RSK,
We both probably need to ask some of the techie guys what would be best, sounds like your like me at a crossroads and truly need to get away from the pen and paper and move into the 21st century, just not sure what is the best route to go. I've always been a windows kinda guy, and have tried to use the apple system but it seems so foreign yet better at the same time.

well I have an iphone 5 and while it is useful for the turn by turn navigation it comes with from the factory, and emailing customers while i'm out in the field, other then that i don't really use much. once I have a new lawn or snow account, I'll save the customers contact info and put their name, address, house number, cell number, email in my phone. but I usually get all that info in the voice mail, and write it down on in my notebook. and as far as estimates i usually do 2-3 spring, early summer and fall. middle of summer is slow for me, then the fall gets busy again. an ipad would be nice for showing customers pictures on but for scheduling and recording info i think it would take much longer then just using a pen and paper.

RSK Property Maintenance
01-08-2013, 01:58 AM
I just want a system that integrates everything together. billing ,routing, estimating, customer info etc etc! Is there such an animal?

landscapebilling.com does all that and is internet based so you can use it anywhere you have internet.

RSK Property Maintenance
01-08-2013, 01:59 AM
Hey have you experienced any problems with landscapebillng. Im having nothing but issues. And there customer service. Ha they never respond back

No issues yet.

rbljack
01-08-2013, 04:40 AM
hey guys...i tried using the iphone 4s calender to track things, but it wasnt a powerful enough app.

I found one called errands, and it allow more details, reoccuring appointments etc..and it has the capablitly to postpone, etc. You can break tasks down for home, work, lawn care, etc.

Just wanted to share what I used last year. I cant remember if it was free or not, but ive been happy with it so far.

I still keep a notebook though to track everything as jobs get done. mileage, amount, time, payment, etc....all goes into the notebook, then gets transfeered to an excel spreadsheet.

Ticolawnllc
01-08-2013, 05:01 PM
I use iPhone. I take notes in the inote. If something happens to my phone everything is backed up in ICloud. I also use a todo app for installs and other work. When Im done i e-mail it to myself with a few clicks. That way when I sit down on my desktop to do billing I have everything.
Also with the inote. I use it as an estimate. I just ask for an email address and send them a copy. By the way my email has a signature that is a disclaimer with all my conditions and warranty. That way they don't comeback at me with bs later.

Ticolawnllc
01-08-2013, 05:04 PM
I just want a system that integrates everything together. billing ,routing, estimating, customer info etc etc! Is there such an animal?

There is but it will cost you. Luck under business or search software

Ticolawnllc
01-08-2013, 05:08 PM
Jason,
You have a Iphone why not get a Ipad as well and eliminate most of the paper work, just curious seems to make sense, not sure though?

Unlike the iPhone with LIFEPROOF case. It fits into my dickies side pocket and I have it on me all day. I can't put the I pad in my pocket. And if I leave something like that in the car it will get stolen or ill have to leave the windows up I summer.

Having the phone has become my wallet or car key. They are on me every minute of the work day.

weeze
01-08-2013, 06:00 PM
Jason,
You have a Iphone why not get a Ipad as well and eliminate most of the paper work, just curious seems to make sense, not sure though?

there's really no need. it's not much paperwork at all. i just jot down a few things each day. takes a few min. i have no need for it while i'm out working. even if i had an ipad i would back it up on paper. you never know when it's gonna go poof on you and you lose everything. you can't trust computers or phones completely lol.

say you're out working one day and something happens. the ipad gets dropped or something. you lose everything. a protective case doesn't prevent all damage. you would be up the creek without a paddle. you drop a notebook it doesn't break and you lose nothing. i don't take my notebook with me though. i leave it at home. there's no need for it on the job. all you need working is lawn equipment and gas lol.

i tend to use my mind as my computer. i'll do that until i lose my mind i guess lol.

Darryl G
01-08-2013, 06:15 PM
I use a day planner to keep track of all of my appointments, work schedule and as a day log to record what I actually do. I keep it in a zippered leather cover that has room for my calculator, business cards, pens/pencils and a spot for a note pad. I also keep a printout of my current customer contact list from Quickbooks in it. Here's the day planner I prefer....just got my new one in the mail yesterday in fact.
http://www.bing.com/shopping/at-a-glance-70-ep01-05-the-action-planner-weekly/p/BC3D36DDE156C864E69D?q=at+a+glance+70-ep01&lpq=at%20a%20glance%2070-ep01&qpvt=at+a+glance+70-ep01&FORM=HURE

I also have an aluminum storage clipboard that I keep in my truck which has some marketing materials in it, blank lawn maintenanace agreements, 3 part estimate and invoice forms and a note pad. I tend to use that when I'm doing estimates for new customers or for installation and renovation estimates as well as for field invoices. I just use generic forms I get at Staples for that. My aluminum clipboard is similar to this, but it opens like a book instead. http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000Q62CKE?&tag=shopwiki-us-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=9325

P.S. - The day planner also has sections in it for notes, to do lists and some resource information in it like important dates, international holidays and area codes. I keep track of my non-mowing to-do list and have my mowing and plowing lists in those sections.

Dragon Rider
01-10-2013, 04:26 PM
We use preprinted forms and also iPads to keep track of everything. As we also spray we need to carry copies of Labels and MSDS, all on the iPad. We would be lost without our technology

LandFakers
01-10-2013, 04:34 PM
I use these pre-made pages for each job. I just keep them in the contractor clipboard, when a estimate rolls in I have this system:

1. Put down basic info, address ect. of call. Fill in schedule to meet on paper. Plug into iphone calendar with alert.

2. Go to estimate, fill in entire sheet while talking to customer. Put into binder of all estimates after scanning into PDF and put into dropbox so it is available to my phone, laptop, etc.

3. If i get the job I then I create a customer data file in evernote with the date, times and work done along with what I charged. I then place the estimate PDF file in the evernote file and I am done.

The beauty of the system is my evernote system. I can type into my phone the customers name and instantly get all the information I ever needed about them. I use my ipad in the field with cell connection to constantly update customer files. I feel like I have the best of both worlds with the paper and then the scanning.

-Chris
How do people make PDFs like that? What program?

cpllawncare
01-10-2013, 04:43 PM
I really want to go to a paperless system as much as possible anyway

quietone
01-10-2013, 04:48 PM
I would suggest getting all of that info put into software. It will allow you to use it later for marketing purposes. I would suggest Servicesidekick.com . Otherwise just used you email calendar.

www.quietvillagelandscaping.com