Play Smoker Craft video to see them get off paper.

Click on the image to open a 15 second video in another tab.

“We gotta get off paper.” That theme ran through our early conversations with Dave Frey, Quality Assurance Manager at boat manufacturer Smoker Craft.  You can find a detailed case study about Smoker Craft here. And the video on the left shows a Smoker Craft operator using an iPad for paperless data collection.

A surprising number of conversations with prospective clients start with, “We gotta get off paper.”

I often detect a kind of embarrassment – sheepishness – at the start of this conversation. The implication is, “We’re not supposed to be doing it this way. We’re really behind. There is something wrong with us.”

I get that. After all, aren’t we in the Internet era? Didn’t the Information Revolution start a long time ago? Aren’t we supposed to be “data driven?”

The Quest for Timely, Accurate, Actionable Information

I don’t think there is anything wrong with these people or their organizations. They’re doing the best they can with the tools they have. In many cases, they’ve invested heavily in information infrastructure. But in spite of that investment they still lack timely, accurate, actionable information.

So we hear prospective clients say things like:

  • “A lot of decisions get made here with little or no data to support them. Everyone has an opinion. Who knows who’s right?”
  • “We have these file drawers full of paper. We can’t find anything when we need it, and if we do find the paper we’re looking for, we can’t read the handwriting.”
  • “You wouldn’t believe how many spreadsheets we are trying to manage and maintain. It is a nightmare trying to keep up.”
  • “We have no idea where to focus our attention. We’re reacting to something that happened days ago, and it is too late to make a difference.”
  • “I am tearing my hair out because I’m expected to meet production and quality goals, and we’re flying by the seat of our pants.”

Good News

The good news is that they may not be as far behind as they think they are. These problems can be solved. What it takes is a little bit of technology, and the will to say, “Business as usual isn’t going to be acceptable anymore.”

This month’s case study looks at how Smoker Craft set out to solve their paper problem, and in doing so triggered a change in corporate culture that has had significant ripple effects on the company’s performance.

Read the complete case study here. Then call us to explore how you can get out from under disparate legacy systems. We can help you discover the satisfaction and empowerment that comes from turning data into actionable intelligence.

By the way – if you haven’t already visited Capterra, take a few minutes to do so. Capterra is the leading independent B2B software review site. You can read our client’s candid assessment of GainSeeker Suite, and compare it to what users are saying about our competitors.