While satisfied with the software and service, Cobalt was missing the personal touch of having a consultant able to visit on-site, so switched to a local company for support. After Focus opened a Christchurch branch, with an experienced team dedicated to offering local support, Cobalt was very happy to return.
Cobalt EDS is a team of dedicated professionals who offer a full range of electrical wiring, installation and maintenance services for domestic, retail and commercial.
The business originally started solely as a security company and has diversified over the years to meet a wide range of demand. Located in the city centre of Christchurch, it grew from a small team of three, to a staff of 18.
With over 27 years of quality service and installations, all staff are industry certified and work with state-of-the-art security and electrical technologies.
Cobalt EDS owner Eddie Russell says the company thrives on providing customers with the best possible solution to their security needs. “No matter what your needs are when it comes to security or electrical and data, we can provide a service that is unrivalled.”
Before introducing MYOB EXO through Focus in 2011, Eddie says the business used Excel spreadsheets for quotes and other software for different aspects of accounting.
“We have basically gone from using a paper system to using electronic devices, such as iPads, for everything. We upgraded to EXO so we could develop our reporting capability for each job, among other benefits.
“EXO provides a total solution package for the business, and we use it for everything, including customer database, job tracking, quoting, invoicing and accounting.”
Cobalt started using Exosoft TimeTrak last year. “TimeTrak gives our technicians the ability to assign an asset to a job or task, as well as track the history. This offers a much improved client service,” says Eddie.
Software consultant, Kirsty Bowden, has been with Focus for four years. She carried out the TimeTrak installation and training for Cobalt.
Kirsty says TimeTrak integrates with EXO to allow users to gather site knowledge, location, client notes, and feedback information. “It’s a hands-on client interface financial package, that offers many benefits. EXO has a module called job costing that allows the user to create jobs. Against those jobs, you can build a quote or set a budget, enter time and materials and assign different people to tasks.
“The issue is, if you have a staff of 10 people, and over the period of a week and they visit potentially 30 jobs each – the user would have to go into each of those 30 jobs and key in the correct person’s time, with notification of what work is being done, plus materials. It’s a huge job for one person.
“We use job costing here at Focus, and found there was a gap. So, TimeTrak was written internally for us to start with. We told other EXO dealers about it – they tried it and loved it, and their clients tried it. It’s just grown from word of mouth, and over the years has continued to evolve as more people use it.”
For Cobalt, TimeTrak is ideal for their technicians who work off-site. “You can have a client with a job that’s in multiple locations. The history information of those assets needs to be available. With TimeTrak, it’s accessible off-site and you can make changes instantly, in real time.
“We’ve since made changes to TimeTrak to match Cobalt’s business processes,” Kirsty says. “They give us regular feedback to let us know any pain points that they would like reviewed or extra features, which we can rewrite or add into the product.”
Focus’ goal is to create a relationship with the client, based on trust. “We essentially become partners with them,” says Kirsty. It’s about listening to them to understand exactly what they need, and doing our best to deliver it.”
“As our client’s way of doing business develops and evolves over time, we are committed to keep moving forward and making changes with the software, to meet those needs.”
Eddie says Focus offers a highly valuable service. “The team are always there for us, no matter what it is we need – whether it’s just to answer a question or to provide technical support. They are focused on making the business run more efficiently, so we can concentrate on doing the best job we possibly can.”