Foulkeways at Gwynedd embraces tablets for exec team

Directors meeting goes iPadLeading Age Magazine in its recent edition (July/Aug 2012) featured a great story about our customer Foulkeways at Gwynedd about an hours drive north of Philly.  Earlier this year, the board of Foulkeways said goodbye to paper and adopted iPads.  Other than an estimated $14K in savings from postage, printing and associated labor costs in year one, there will no doubt be returns in increased productivity and improved sharing which is now done in real (or near real) time. Read the whole article HERE.

These days, no one will disagree that technology can save them money but few quite understand how or where these savings can come from.  The elusive “soft cost savings” of labor are the toughest for some to wrap their heads around.  Tasks that once consumed hours of someone’s time each month, once automated, free up that person for other tasks that can more directly serve our residents.  After all, that’s why we’re here in the first place right?  We are not “reducing” our labor cost so much as increasing productivity.  If I am not busy collating meeting minutes or photocopying reports, perhaps I am interacting with a resident or improving a service.  What is the value of this?  The answer: far greater than most would attribute to it.

That said, if we do this enough, if we embrace technology a little bit here and there for a variety of different purposes, we won’t need to hire that next administrative person down the road which WILL add to our labor overhead.

CARDWATCH has applied this same principal to our Mobile POS solution.  Taking order entry right to the table means wait staff can fire orders back to the kitchen while still standing at the table.  With the busy rush of residents flooding into the dining room at the beginning of a dinner period, not having to walk back and forth to a POS terminal (or worse, to the kitchen if you don’t have a POS system) means not not only faster service for the resident, but likely the need for fewer wait staff on the floor since order entry becomes more efficient. This translates into savings in labor hours that go right to the bottom line.

Forward thinking leaders like those at Foulkeways will be the ones who are best equipped to meet the demands of the next cohort of residents moving into our communities.  Less time at our desks and more time with the residents will help us to be more in touch with them and better able to respond to their ever changing (and growing) expectations. The Boomer generation, as I’ve said here before, will be looking for more choice, more flexibility and more service than any generation that came before.  You can’t meet that challenge just sitting at your desk!