jācapps increases efficiency with just a swipe
Though many people claim that software makes our lives easier, it’s often the case that complex training is required of those who have the least time to spare. So, what’s the easiest, most cost-effective way to automate work processes? jācapps, an award-winning mobile strategy and development company headquartered in Bingham Farms, Michigan, helps companies find solutions.
jācapps has created over 1,300 affordable apps that make life easier for workers and clients, whether they’re in the field, car or office.
In the Beginning
It all began 12 years ago when jācapps President Paul Jacobs began making mobile applications for radio stations. He formed a consulting company, Jacobs Media, then established jācapps, a play on the founders’ last name. Today, the company has created apps for 640 radio stations nationwide.
Chief Operating Officer Bob Kernen joined Paul seven years ago to manage a team of the most creative, hands-on developers—the kind of professionals who already understand how to bring their highly developed soft skills to the table and help bridge the language chasm between techies and users in a variety of industries.
The diverse staff they hired came with years of experience building electronic formats—people who could create ways for clients to manage their most critical operational processes on a desktop, tablet or smartphone. “From purchasing and product delivery to accounting, these innovators develop apps that are easy to use and intuitive in application,” Bob says.
“We really want our employees to feel they are helping to make the company the best it can be,” Paul says. “They have the smarts to develop exceptional improvements from even the most abstract of ideas.”
Making Life Easier
Just as household management has evolved with 21st-century technology—easy online ordering, bill payments, synchronized calendars—jācapps has helped to revolutionize business management. The company’s apps help businesses pay bills, order supplies, determine shipping and delivery logistics, and locate and communicate with drivers. Employees receive automated reminders, eliminating the need to check calendars or turn on computers.
The jācapps team dreamed of solutions and made them happen, taking advantage of the smartphone as it continued to grow in popularity and functionality.
No matter the application—workers and supervisors in the field, purchasing and vendor management, shipping, accounting and administration—jācapps has found a way to help construction, health care, radio and communications, logistics and other industries save money.
The company’s end goal has always been to make client companies more efficient and profitable. With that in mind, jācapps professionals are asked to make an app easy and pretty—and a step-saver. Paul says that team members are able to understand a client’s unique needs and then translate those needs into tech-speak while providing strong design elements and functionality.
“jācapps maintains its status in the industry with recognizable menus, user-friendly buttons and elegant effects that ensure brand compliance, plus the ability to use existing customer IT systems or to tie into other jācapps products.” Paul Jacobs, President, jācapps
Paul says that it’s the ability to mobilize communications that first attracts prospective clients. “jācapps maintains its status in the industry with recognizable menus, user-friendly buttons and elegant effects that ensure brand compliance, plus the ability to use existing customer IT systems or to tie into other jācapps products,” he says.
The company’s application programming interface (API) can integrate with websites, create calendar events, push reminders and notifications and interface with e-commerce systems with technologically advanced security methodology, critical in this world of hackers and e-thieves.
Innovations in Communication
Stoneco of Michigan, a supplier of crushed limestone, sand and gravel, had grown to over 20 locations throughout the state. With that growth, leadership was worried about customers’ needs straining the Stoneco systems. It was becoming trickier to keep track of drivers, field staff, quarry stock and general communications. Stoneco started looking for a mobile app to facilitate communication among its plants, its customers, internal operations and the drivers who deliver their products.
The company hired jācapps to create a smartphone app for instant communication with the goal of improved efficiency and insurance against future growing pains. “We knew that our larger staff and increasingly complicated logistics could become very difficult, especially keeping track of our many trucks on the road, more locations and the stock levels necessary to fill and deliver orders,” says Paul Cuthbert, Vice President of Sales for Stoneco of Michigan. Now, if a customer submits a last-minute order, Paul says, “I can keep a plant open an extra half hour, so the app paid for itself in no time.”
The Construction Association of Michigan (CAM) approached jācapps to make its popular Construction Buyers Guide accessible through an easy-to-use app. The association’s new app allows users to search for suppliers, contractors and subcontractors needed to complete projects, all without leaving the field. Contact information is more reliable with the app compared with a printed directory, as additions, edits and deletions are entered by CAM and instantly available to members.
jācapps has grown from two employees when it was founded to 15 dedicated team members, and Bob and Paul are committed to supporting their team and their community. “When our staff discovers a new technology, a conference or training opportunity that they want to explore, of course we encourage that,” says Bob. “They are the people who make us the company we are.”
“Our employees make creative, outside-the-envelope suggestions for the whole team to brainstorm, so many of our improvements and modifications both to internal systems and for our clients’ needs grow organically, from the bottom up,” Bob says.
jācapps employees also value their place in the community and are committed to working to make the Detroit area a great place to live and work. As part of this, they’ve become involved with Life Remodeled, a local neighborhood revitalization nonprofit.
“We’ve loved being a part of Life Remodeled,” Bob explains. We spent a couple of days as a team at their Durfee Innovation Society, helping to renovate the space. We also took a team out to one of their neighborhood cleanups and mowed lawns and cleaned up vacant lots.”
And so it follows that the same jācapps employees who help create and expand their own company to make it a better place for themselves and their customers are the same people committed to making the world a better place to live, where those they’ve never met can benefit from their good fortune.