Replace Paper with PowerApps

PowerApps is a powerful piece of application development software which collects, stores, and surfaces information for the developer to utilise. Endless possibilities sit in PowerApps, and it is fully integrated into the Microsoft stack.

When OfficeLabs look to start the digital transformation journey with an organisation, one of the key activities we begin with is ways to improve responsiveness and the agility of the business. OfficeLabs uses strategic planning and discussions to plan where your most effective solution lies: typically, with PowerApps. It’s difficult to summarise everything PowerApps is capable of, but one thing is for certain: if there’s a business difficulty, there’s a business solution:

• Streamline how you and your co-workers handle expenses, claims and invoices

• Create an integrated, well-rounded platform for your organisation needs; from admin to approvals

• Easily manage where company equipment is distributed, returned and recycled

• Seamless project management to stay ahead of the curve and deadlines, whilst maintaining a birds-eye view

• Gather, maintain and utilise information through digital forms and data repositories, enabling a paperless future

• On the go? Doesn’t matter. PowerApps is available anywhere. Be it in the office, on the road, or working from home.

Productivity gains with PowerApps do not end with reduced manual work and wasted time. PowerApps can utilise any items, files, lists or data in your repository of choice, becoming instantly part of an organisations workflows – driving processes, tasks and reporting. Late invoices or approved claims can be quickly spotted with a connected Power Automate workflow, alerting the approver that their attention is required.

Linking multiple platforms like Teams, Planner, Power Automate and PowerApps can create an integrated project management tool that streamlines approval processes and makes sure deadlines are hit. Where required, PowerApps can work symbiotically with Power BI, enabling teams to report back on successes, downfalls, or moments of note to senior management rapidly.

Data can be collected by creating an in-built form to a PowerApp, where strict rules can easily be woven, preventing the user from making their own changes to the form – a common practice with paper! Automatically calculated fields, auto completed fields and workflow actions are layered, until a smart form can be used on any web enabled device.

Examples of where OfficeLabs have improved upon old processes by using PowerApps include the ability to capture images which are then included in the form, identified with time, date, geolocation and description – making use of the smart device features. A paper-based form can’t take video, audio recording or photographs! This is some of the most powerful and upcoming technology being implemented into PowerApps, as storage facilities can quickly use the PowerApp to take a picture of a specific item (or even barcode) to locate the item, find the quantity, and even note whether more stock should be ordered.

Apps can also be used on mobile devices, including tablets, even smart watches! This now essential requirement in the age of moving workspaces means your apps are useful both on the road, and at home.

Another example is an onboarding App – when a new member of staff joins, it is necessary to involve multiple departments to ensure the new starter receives an account, hardware, software, a physical location, allocated a desk and receives the appropriate training. Before joining, the HR manager can use the onboarding App, sending actions to each relevant department involved in delivering the items needed by the new starter. Each department can then mark their action as complete, ensuring the new member of staff is engaged, made to feel welcome and productive in the least amount of time. Reports from the onboarding PowerApp shows any issues in the deployment of necessary items and improvements can be identified. If issues do arise, Power Automate can be utilised, once again, to notify the appropriate individual who can investigate the issue.

Have a look at some of the examples that OfficeLabs have built using PowerApps:

Incident Management – we eliminated manual processes around incident reporting, tracking and analysis.

Trip Approvals – the customer can now more productively manage, approve, and report on their trips.

Asset Management – we digitised and automated an asset management process, driving productivity as well as better asset awareness.

How Can OfficeLabs Help?

These are just some of the benefits Microsoft PowerApps can offer your company. When you book an appointment with an OfficeLabs consultant, they will talk to you in depth about your business needs, and how best to utilise PowerApps. Remember, PowerApps is just one tool in the Microsoft 365 suite — OfficeLabs will ensure you get the most out of each application. Making sure your business runs as smoothly and efficiently as possible is why OfficeLabs has been chosen by both FTSE 250 companies and public sector bodies, and our no-jargon approach will let you talk to us with confidence about your requirements.

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