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Time-saving gadgets
20 November 2008, by , in Data Management, No comments

I’m a sucker for time-saving gadgets. Even gadgets I would personally never have need for. 

Here’s one described in InformationWeek magazine. It’s a wearable printer-scanner, designed by HP for UPS. In essence, what it lets the UPS staffer do is scan the UPS package and then spray sorting information ON the package, all from the same machine. And it’s actually worn on the user’s arm.

Before the development of the machine, sorters had to carry packages to a fixed scanner connected to a large thermal printer. The device will not only save time but save paper. Given the volume that UPS handles, this could mean thousands of tons of paper per year.

I love gadgets like these, because I believe that anything that helps save time, money, or resources, is a good thing. I spend a lot of time with my clients trying to identify business processes that could be improved. Sometimes gadgets fit that bill.

One of my favorite stories is from many years ago, when I helped an office manager switch from using a sheet of labels run through a regular laser printer for just one or two mailing labels, to a single-label machine. She was beside herself when she made the change, and even her boss noticed how much happier she was.

Simple gadgets can make a big difference. Do you have a favorite time-saving gadget?

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National Association of Life Brokerage Agencies

“Wes was able to come in and offer tangible, relevant advice that made us more productive immediately. I value his understanding of databases but more so, his understanding of how nonprofits work. There was no lost time educating him about how membership organizations are “different.” Wes recommended changes in processes as well as tips and tricks that were easy to implement made an immediate positive impact.”

Mary Pat Paris, Executive Director
International Registration Plan

Mary Pat Paris
International Registration Plan

“This is the second database implementation we’ve done since I have been at Western Arts Alliance (WAA). The first I did on my own. This time we engaged Wes Trochlil as our database planning consultant. Let me tell you, this process is a whole lot easier having Wes on your team! For a small association like WAA, it’s tempting for board and EDs to question the justification and expense of a database planning consultant. But it’s the small associations that need Effective Database Management the most. Wes strengthened our planning process, clarified our needs requirements, helped us steer around solutions that couldn’t meet our objectives, and saved us money in the long haul.”

Tim Wilson, Executive Director
Western Arts Alliance

Tim Wilson
Western Arts Alliance
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