You made the switch from hand tools to power tools years ago, so why not embrace technological advances in your sales tools as well? Vince Nardo, president of Reborn Cabinets Inc. and Vianvi Signature Cabinet Refacing, has done just that by making the most of his tablet computer. Here’s how he suggests you can use the device to get organized and lessen your workload.

Stay on Track—and Save a Tree

Technology is great for keeping your staff on the same page when it comes to product catalogs, presentation books, price lists, and forms. A lightweight tablet computer also takes the place of the trunkful of printed matter that often gets hauled along to sales calls.

Additionally, using a tablet helps keep your company’s presentations consistent. For instance, when conducting a needs assessment, you can create a spreadsheet form that’s the same size as your company’s tablet screens and then employ that form to capture and catalogue clients’ answers. Using these forms helps to make sure that you’ve collected all of the required information. And, because the file is electronic, you can share it easily with others as well as add the information to databases or drop relevant bits of data into searchable internal forms.

Similarly, preformatted forms can help your staff calculate prices more quickly— and with fewer errors—because the goods prices are already in the system; all you need to do is enter the quantities required.

Software and Systems to Rev Up Your Tablet

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  1. GoToMeeting or other online meeting solution Click to see our picks for online meeting apps.
  2. Dropbox or similar storage filing system Click to see iMore's cloud storage picks for iPhone and iPad.
  3. Adobe Acrobat or similar software to create forms Click to see our picks for budget-friendly form builders.
  4. PDF Expert or similar system that lets you sign a document and email it Click to see iMore's best document signing apps for iPad.
  5. Customer Relationship Management system or apps to help manage a salesperson’s schedule Click to see our picks for budget-friendly CRM systems.
  6. Photo measurement app Click to see HouseIt's top 5 room measurement apps.
  7. BuilderTrend or other project scheduling system Click to visit the BuilderTrend website.

Streamline Sales

Tablets augment good salesmanship by helping to remove all of the little problems that can trip up an otherwise efficient sale. The information collected is more accurate and can be transferred to the office immediately. Best of all, you can make an electronic record of the customer’s signature when he or she commits to a job.

Of course, tablets can easily replace traditional photo albums, with the added advantage that you can zoom in on details and show videos when meeting with potential customers. The built-in camera can also be employed with software that not only takes before pictures of a project, but automatically measures the space where the work will be done. Finally, consider using the camera’s map feature to create a location-specific album of projects.

Once the job starts, the construction team can work off of tablet-optimized documents populated by the information collected during the selling process. They’ll also have contract documents, price comparisons, and a variety of other sales tools at the ready should questions arise. And, when change orders get processed, everyone on the team can be alerted.