There are many reasons for taking photographs. Some are sophisticated, others are more practical. No one would argue the artistic merits of a passport photograph (and it’s often the picture we’re more apprehensive about showing anyone else), but its function is hard to understate – it improves document security, uniformly provides a snapshot of everyone using this vital document, and helps contribute to border security. That’s hardly romantic, but it doesn’t need to be.
The same can be said for the commercial application of photographs within your business. Let’s say you run a contracting firm and need to document work conducted, picture faults, communicate issues to professionals, or develop consistent communications with clients. While photography may not be your forte, it’s surely part of the job.
So – how can photographic documentation inform and assist your contracting business, and to what extent should you embed this practice in your daily operations? In this post, we’ll discuss that and more:
Document Before-And-After Transformations
Perhaps the most common use of commercial-focused photography is that of a portfolio. This way, you can prove to future clients or investors of the work you do, the product development you’ve progressed with, or the renovations you’ve committed to.
This is not only a measure of prowess but of proof. Make sure specific photographs of space, from many angles, clearly lit, are documented with correct timestamps to ensure that repair work can be proven, or that deteriorated conditions are managed. This may even help you with client disputes. On a more positive note, you could better liaise with clients in tandem with the jobs you’re planning. For example, if a client decides against a particular window fitting and sends you a picture of the kind they’re looking for, you can easily pivot your order and offer an updated quote more easily, without having to arrange an entirely new inspection and quotation to see what they mean.
Integrate Software For Photo Organization
With service scheduling software, you can plan tasks, assign responsibilities, manage projects, and convey all of this information to the end client where appropriate. This is essential in contracting firms with multiple staff members and visits to manage in a single day.
Using software that can be synchronized with work phones and has photographic documentation capabilities can be key. From taking pictures of repair faults to fuseboxes, from cataloging receipts being scanned for expenses to verifying the serial numbers of installed utilities, photo organization software will empower your business to prove completed work at every level of the chain.
Error Reporting Systems
Let’s consider a small case study. A contractor signs a contract with a letting agency to attend to the properties of multiple landlords. When a repair fault is identified, the tenant raises the maintenance issue, which communicates with the letting agent software, and they assign that task to the contracting firm.
A contracting firm with a robust messaging system in place to update on the progress of a job, while also qualifying repair tasks using photographic images that are then indexed and easy to assess, will be able to confirm tasks undertaken and move on to the next job. With a contracting business designed to offer this functionality, securing these contracts is much more possible, providing a regular and repeating client. Investing in photographic tracking, then, can help you remain competitive.
Document Worksite Safety Measures
Safety is essential when working on houses or repairing faults, and using photographs to better document glaring safety issues can help you escalate problems to the very top of your priority list. Following that, you can use these photographs to help train new staff members and onboard them correctly, from pointing out all the faults in a picture to determining the fit, dimensions, and structural layering of construction in a renovated property.
You may simply take a picture of the worksite hazard board to ensure your team that day brings the correct safety equipment with them, or else they can’t work within those construction site parameters. Images of this nature are a quick, validated, and professional source of communication, perfect if you’re managing a small team. It will also help you verify project milestones to ensure your incremental operational process is correctly followed and signed off on.
With this advice, you’re certain to benefit from integrating photograph collection and management as part of your operational process. When correctly integrated, you’ll develop a vast collection of proofs that allow you to document work conducted and appraisals given.