Why admin should not be an extra job beyond the job

Post Summary
Frustrated over how admin feels like a whole other job? Been there!

Health and safety considerations require attention to detail, collaboration, and timely action. Yet during my time as site manager for Flying Fox, a multi-location high ropes course operator, there was a division between my time implementing safety measures and my time in the office doing admin about implementing safety measures.

Admin. For many in the outdoor industry, this term is associated with piles of paperwork, clunky Excels, and time off-site. Importantly, this framework of admin-as-its-own-activity is an additional strain on time and resources beyond actually implementing health and safety measures, such as daily checks, training, and team feedback.

I found this division between implementation and admin-about-implementation quite unnatural. My experience in the outdoor sports industry showed me the immense importance qualified professionals pay to health and safety standards, yet this traditional format of admin - paperwork done after the actual daily ops job - made it a cumbersome aspect of the job. 

It was when I became an operations director that this division felt even more problematic - the quantum of administrative tasks increased multifold, from one to six sites. But surely managing my team should occupy most of my time? 

My monthly field checks now required me to zoom out and ask questions with implications for the company as a whole. How many harnesses would need to be phased out next quarter? How many wire ropes require changing? Such macro questions often came up while conducting field visits, but answering them required me to leave the field, go back to the computer, pore over multiple location-specific Excel spreadsheets, and then supply the answer (likely in another Excel) and assign tasks. 

This was inefficient and, honestly, not what had brought me to the outdoors industry. 

We tried a few leading operations and PPE management software solutions and had to use a combination of the least expensive versions. The comprehensive packages were too expensive, particularly as they charge per seat. More crucially, even those packages did not offer complete solutions. 

Thinking about it now, this experience of working with inadequate solutions for years is probably what nudged me to design Risk Memo.

Risk Memo is built to digitise and enhance your business’ existing health and safety management procedures. You can build customised checklists for documenting any aspect of your operations - site visits, warehouse checks, external inspections. These checklists would be available on your team members’ phones, work offline, and can be used to raise issues and assign action to the appropriate team member. This makes health and safety management proactive, timely, and collaborative. 

Additionally, when you link an item of equipment or a team member to a checklist, that checklist gets logged in the history of that equipment or team member - no additional admin required to create records. Checklists seamlessly integrate ops and admin.

Risk Memo’s digital checklists, when combined with the app’s search tag system, enable managers to review company-wide data on a single dashboard. They can review inventory, search for soon-to retire equipment, update status of equipment, and follow up with team members on assigned tasks. Most importantly, it frees up resources to manage people, not paperwork.

I hope you’ll give Risk Memo a try. Our pricing structure is informed by my decades of experience with small businesses. We offer a free 14-day trial and there is in-app chat support. You can find details on pricing and a link to sign up for the trial here: https://www.riskmemo.com/pricing

I’d love to answer any questions you might have. Feel free to drop me a message on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/alistair-gunn-scott or an email at alistair@riskmemo.com 

Until next time,


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