A bit of context:
Business is 15 years old, 6 inspectors, 3 support staff. Have been looking for a replacement to our current system for about 2 years. Have been road testing Spectora for about 2 months. Still use my current system, planning to switch after I resolve internally some challenges.
As with any change there are things you will loose and things you will gain. The question is, for your business model, do the pros outweigh the cons. My pros and cons may not be yours. I would not encourage anyone to simply take my word or anyone else without giving it a shot.
We made the decision to take report writing first, office automation later. If you are an ISN user (we are), I would stick with that for the foreseeable future, they have too far to go to come close to ISN, that may change.
I was really surprised by there willingness to adopt one of my suggestions before we signed up.
- Template import very easy, much easier than expected
- Database live search, no longer have to remember where a comment is located. makes template management much easier, use voice to text or just start typing and it searches as you type. This feature will soon get even better.
- Very responsive to user feedback, their online tracking suggestion and system tells you what the priorities are based on user feedback.
- Report sync: A multi inspectors best friend. Working as a team on a large project a breeze.
- Adding new comments is easy from mobile device while in the field, with the option to save or not save to company template. Any member of the team can add to template at any time.
- Database structure allows you to simplify in a way that can result in time saving.
- Very responsive support, more so than some that have been in business for far longer (hope this continues).
- Ease of use, easy navigation.
- For those that want to finish reports onsite, this will do it. If you are used to using another system, it will take time to drop your old habits but you will get there.
- Frequent updates as a response to inspector input. Huge problem with current system.
- Syncs nicely with google calendar and ISN, allowing us to separate our move and just handle inspectors first.
- Cost: As your inspections increase, the cost per inspection drops.
- There are a few areas where they restrict your ability to customize (e.g. limiting categories to 3), I think the limit should be up to the user.
- All reports look the same. While the look is superior to most out there, report customization is not as flexible as it could be. e.g. there are no options to design your own cover. Having worked on branding ourselves to the point of trademarking our name, this is a tough one that could derail our switch.
- Report tracking history is limited, I am used to knowing every instance my reports are opened, or forwarded.
- Finding an incomplete section tedious
- My personal pet peeve, the report is a part of a legal contract between us and the customer, having the agent and spectora on the report should be the inspectors decision. Currently you have no choice if you collect the agent info and use their email system.
Bottom line, a great start, very promising future. Its worth the time to explore what’s possible, don’t rely on comments here alone. If you take the time to plan your move, I can’t imagine you regretting it.