Using the iPad for business – iPad in enterprise
It is business that makes the world go around and we are in the fortunate situation now that we have a lot of different technology to help us do business efficiently. There are a large number of companies, that are now looking to see how they can use the iPad for business. Company directors want to know what does the iPad do? Maybe they have seen the way that Apple themselves use the iPad for their business and would like to get in on the action too. In the Apple retail stores the Apple shop retail people walk around with an iPad in their hand, and they use it in any number of ways to assist the customers and even to make sales. Also in the Apple retail stores, they use the iPad to be interactive sales display units, to inform customers about the various products they have for sale within the shop.
So it doesn’t matter where your business sends you, with the iPad it is easy to keep up-to-date with sales and manage your transactions. As seen on the shop floor in the Apple retail stores, such as in the Apple Store Madrid or the Apple Store Barcelona, you can close a sale deal without having to go find a sales till. You can also find applications for the iPad, that will allow you to do credit card transactions, and get paid straightaway.
When you’re using the iPad for business, it doesn’t have to just be in the realm of sales, it could also be for a business manager that wants to check the bank statements and reconcile transactions at the bank. The iPad in business could also just be used for creating invoices that can be handed to the customer directly. The sooner the customer has the invoice, the sooner it is possible to get paid.
There are number of invoicing applications that you can get in the iTunes App Store for iPad. Just choose one that suits you and gives you a professional looking invoice. You’re not going to want to carry a printer around with you, but you can e-mail the invoice directly from the iPad. But it is not just invoices, you can also do estimates, purchase orders and deal with credit.
Invoice2Go for iPad does the business
Within this invoice2Go for iPad application you have 20 built-in templates, or if you prefer you can design your own. It is easy enough to add a company logo and set it up just the way that you want it. Of course with the iPad you will be able to link into your contact list to select a customer. Once you have entered in the item information the application will calculate in the VAT or taxes and work out the total. You can show the invoice to the custom there and then, send it off by e-mail or if you want to you can have it synchronised with your desktop version of the invoice2Go application. As you would expect in this type of application, there will be built-in charts and reports and you will be able to track the invoices and also the payments received from customers.
Another app you might look at, would be a QuickSale for iPad, which also has all of the things you expect to see in an invoicing application. For example, it is easy for you to apply a discount, which can be a certain amount, or a percentage of the total. It could even be that you just want to apply a discount to one item and you are able to do that with QuickSale for iPad. There is also a Credit Card Terminal for iPad application which integrates with this Quick Sale for iPad app. Very important in these difficult financial times to make sure that you get paid and getting paid instantly as soon as the sale is made is better still. Also these business applications for iPad will let you keep track of product that you have available for sale, your inventory.
Get the signature on the business deal using your iPad
There will be times when you need to get a signature from your customer or client, to seal the deal and to allow the process to take the next step forward. On such occasions you can use the iPad with an application that allows for document signing. One such application that will let you sign a document is called DocuSign. This is an application that lets you create your own documents which you can add via Google Docs or box.net and also gives you preconfigured template’s for use with the application. If you have a customer in front of you, then you can have the customer sign the document in person. It is also possible to e-mail the document if that is what is needed for that particular sale.
If you are working with PDF documents there is an application called SignMyPad and you can do all the adding of text and dates plus signatures to a PDF, as annotations which can be e-mailed or uploaded to your Dropbox for iPad. With such a system is it possible for you to streamline the workflow of doing business, making you look professional and probably increasing your sales. As soon as the customer or client has signed the document, you can upload to the Dropbox folder so that they can be processed at a later stage.
Show me the money – Be Square
This is going to work best when you use the iPad with the 3G connection to give you the extra mobility. It may also be the case that you don’t need 3G, if you are always connected by Wi-Fi in the place where you are using the iPad. An iPad and an application like Square can replace the cash register and smooth the inward flow of money. Square is a point of sale application which will take payments from debit and credit cards into the iPad. The application comes with a credit card reader which you attach physically to your iPad. The other similar application would be credit card terminal for iPad which you use with an Authorise.net account, for accepting payments.
Cooking the books – Using the iPad for business
If you’re looking for a time and billing suite for your accounting purposes, you might like to have a look at Bizmo accounting. It is easy to track expenses, receivables and payables, as well as for doing your bank reconciliations. The application has been designed for use in with the iPad, in which case it is made so that you can efficiently enter the data using the iPad’s touchscreen. In the case of Bizmo accounting you are using the cloud for your accounting and you’re able to sign up for extra services if you need them. On the other hand you might prefer an application that will work with your accounting software already on your desktop computer. There is an application called Account Edge Mobile, which has a sister application for the desktop and by using both those applications you can get the accounting job done. Businesses are really getting to see what is an iPad used for.