Why Tools Matter: Software/Services Businesses Can Thrive On

There are certain variables to success: Talent, Speed, Creativity, Quality, Price, and of course Convenience.

Somewhere in there you need the right tools. You need a screwdriver, hammer, nails, and a drill. That may seem obvious if you build things on the regular, but what if you’re new? What about if you’re not new, but you didnt ever realize you may need a toolbox? How about a charger that can charge 6 batteries at once for all of your cordless tools?

The following pieces of software, services, and apps are going to help you. Whether you’re a 3 person creative team or a 100 person restaurant chain, these tools [and ones like them] will help you get the job done.

Square

If you’re going to sell something — a product or a service — you’re going to need a way to collect dollars to continue this cycle. There are plenty of POS [point of sale] solutions out there. Some have upfront costs [and cheap hardware], some have no upfront costs [and expensive hardware], some have both, and some have neither. The important thing to note here first and foremost is that Square is free. Creating an account, setting it all up, and using it is free. The only ‘charge’ you are going to incur is in one of two ways:

  1. You accept credit cards [which you always pay to have a credit card merchant. Square just got smart and combined credit card merchant, pos-system, and tools to run your business all in one]
  2. You go with Square Add-ons: Payroll Management, Email Marketing; ETC

As you can see, there are always ways to spend money on a platform. What I love about square is that they let you run your physical business AND your online business using one platform. This way you can grow both locally and across the globe with an eCommerce website. With Square, you’re only spending money when:

  • Buying An ipad
  • Accepting Credit Cards
  • NFC Payments
  • Feature Add-Ons: Payroll, Appointments, Email-Marketing

Square also has something that I don’t think the competition has caught up to yet:

  • Their app
  • Their online sales reports

We are able to run our multi-location restaurant chain form one square account. We are able to check sales acrosslocations, for the whole company, and compare them to last week/month/year.

We can see cash sales, check deposits, and even see who our highest performing sales people are. We also have the option to give our customers digital receipts, refunds, gift cards, and engage with them via a private review system similar to yelp without all of the fuss.

If you’re serious about running your business, and knowing everything about what’s coming in and going out. Check out square today.

Although a whole article can be written on Square alone — it is vital that you check them out for yourself and see how valuable they will become to your business, whether you do 20k a year or 6m. Check them out here:]

Deputy

We knew when we opened our second location that we were going to need a sytem to on-board, manage, schedule, and announce new things to our growing number of employees. This is where Deputy came in. We literally just get their email address and send them a link to complete the proccess of creating an account with Deputy and downloading the Deputy app from the App Store.

This allows our employees to check their schedule, clock-in/out, view announcements, and request time off…. From anywhere!!

Using this service has literally enabled me to schedule over 50 people consistently for over 4 years. You can add sales budgets for the day/week and add the pay rate of your employees so that you may see and forcast labor costs.

We’re able to assign an employee to a ‘position’ so this way they know when they get their schedule two weeks in advance they will know that they’re scheduled as a Server, or a Busser, or a host.

If you think you’re ready to get rid of Excel sheet schedules, hand-written, or other weird software solutions. Give Deputy a try: Here.

Dropbox

How I wish this next section could’ve been named ‘iCloud’. I absolutely believe that iCloud is superior because of it’s native home in the Apple iPhone/iPad/Mac ecosystem. We do have the less fortunate working with us — we call those people Android Users. Because we love our Android cousins we opted to use a service that allows almost any major platform to download an app and share/keep all files up date:

  • Menus
  • Flyers to be posted for our employees
  • Emergency Contact lists
  • Legal Documents
  • Scans
  • Payroll Records

Another great thing is that it logs who/what/when/where/why/how someone modified or deleted a file in our Dropbox — which is cool with us.

See DropBox in action heeeerrreeee!

Slack

With the advent of iMessage and Deputy, this piece of software has become a little less necessary for us, but it is still very important and extremely powerful as it leverages the ideas of and puts together almost every feature from every product listed above [in it’s own quirky way].

Slack delivers by giving you and you employees a sandbox to announce, talk, share, converse, interact, and ultimately get stuff done. With it’s lengthy list of add-ons and apps that you can configure within it [we have a monthly poll that asks all of our employees how they feel our last meeting went] Slack delivers on the promise of a sacred place for work-place collaboration.

Slack offers the ability to have separate channels for everything: Everyone, Designers, Managers, Project Leaders;ETC — all on an open or invite-only basis. Check Slack out here:]

Conclusion [it’s never really over]

The common thread here is people. We wanted tools that connected people to each other and gave them the ability to get things done. We are always after services and software that: save everyone time, have a great app experience, and make it easier to communicate with each other when it matters.

BONUS: COOSHA Calendar

Although we do not personally use this service. We have done some poking around with the app provided to us by the COOSHA Team and it looks promising.

As mentioned above we are Apple aficionados who love the feel of a native app and the service it provides.

COOSHA stands for Coordinate & Share. Not a bad idea — especially with every single service mentioned above promising to do the same thing. We will continue to keep our eye on COOSHA and its team of hardworking [did we mention these guys are sweethearts?] people to see where it all goes form here.

You can always check these guys out here!!!


Kendel Rodriguez is a Son, Brother, Cousin, Uncle, Husband, Father, Friend, and Business Man. He lives in Visalia, CA. He takes care of Operations for Bravo Farms California — a wonderfully small chain of Restaurants & Destinations in the San Joaquin Valley. He is the Founder of Q|R Media, a Boutique Digital Ad Agency that loves Social Media. Kendel is Christian and believes that all people can do what they want to do in life because the ultimate price has been paid for them. He loves writing posts on Medium in his spare time and even not so spare time.

Please: if you have a heart, hit the heart button:]