Businesses are always on the lookout for ways to reduce waste and boost the productivity of organizational operations.

Implementing a streamlined mobile data collection application is an extremely powerful way to realize this goal of greater efficiency, across the board.

For starters, take the amount of time saved thanks to mobile data collection solutions. Quite a bit of time—not to mention paper—is wasted by field representatives when tasks such as quality assurance crosschecks are handled with the use of disparate spreadsheets, clipboards or other manual methods of data collection. Such methods are notoriously unreliable and prone to human error, leading to further time wasted on backpedaling to fix these mistakes. When representatives are equipped with a mobile data collection platform that emphasizes flexible reporting and is accessible from smartphones and tablets, they can focus on the essential tasks at hand. This is also the only way to assure that the information will be recorded and shared correctly.

Travel is another significant expense that eats up a disproportionate amount of time. But a sophisticated mobile data collection platform can significantly diminish the number of required retail visits, for example, trimming travel expenses for market research and beyond. Field representatives furnished with a mobile data collection application can send key intelligence regarding competitors, the quality of competing products and much more—all in real time—straight back to marketing teams. Such intelligence not only helps ensure a successful new product launch, but it also saves marketing teams the hassle of travel and associated costs.

Finally, the right mobile data collection application can help catch critical mistakes—mistakes that cost time and money and are responsible for missed sales opportunities. When an international food and beverage manufacturer implemented GoSpotCheck to gauge store-level marketing processes and operational compliance, hiccups such as incorrect product tags were caught in real-time. Armed with this awareness, this manufacturer approached retailers and successfully demanded that better resources be put in place to prioritize precision with regard to inventory. This effectively put a stop to incorrect price-tagging and other inaccurate product information, which was impacting the brand’s profit margins.

Reducing waste—in the form of time, poor productivity, missed sales opportunities, and unnecessary costs—is what mobile data collection means in this era of real-time information gathering. A well-designed mobile data collection application is easy to implement and should deliver upon its return on investment promises right from the start.

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