When it comes to reporting, mobile professionals and field workers need to sweat the small stuff. After all, report thoroughness, detail, and accuracy play a key role in achieving successful outcomes.
Police incident reports can make or break a case. An insurance adjuster’s report can determine whether claims are settled. Caseworker documentation is critical to the services clients receive. And legal professionals rely on accurate documentation pertinent to each case or matter.
Because generalities and vague recollections simply won’t get the job done, relying on memory alone is risky business. In fact, research on the forgetting curve shows that within one hour people will have forgotten an average of 50 percent of the information presented to them. Within 24 hours, this jumps to 70 percent, and within a week, forgetfulness reaches its peak of 90 percent.
This is not surprising to us. When individuals dictate notes directly in the moment, versus having to recall details from hours before, they capture more specificity within their documentation – because speaking thoughts out loud produces a real-time narrative of the situation.
And in many instances, speaking notes, versus typing them by hand, helps unleash creativity. We see this most often with individuals who struggle with writing, including students.
According to Cathi Graveline, of the Foothills Academy in Calgary, her students are using mobile dictation applications, like Dragon Anywhere, to get homework done faster and smarter. “Dictating their work helps to free up cognitive space so that students don’t lose their thoughts and ideas while worrying about the mechanics of writing,” Cathi told us.
While mobile professionals may not be focusing on the creative-side of report writing, per se, when details really matter, arming them with tools to help with real-time note-taking is a powerful way to support what they do.