App of the Week: NoteVault

Mobile app: NoteVault
Developer: NoteVault, Inc.
Cost: $20 monthly per user or $199 per month unlimited plan
Available on: Apple and Android devices

The NoteVault mobile app can be used with any phone to capture real-time voice and photos from the field. According to Derick Downs with NoteVault, “You just talk, hit send and you’re done.” NoteVault then transcribes the voice into text as well as formats it with the photos into observation reports. What’s unique about NoteVault is that the notes are transcribed by a person and not another computer. It is currently the company specializing in transcribing notes specifically for the construction industry.

Video: Use Your Mobile Phone for Daily Reports with NoteVault

NoteVault works with any phone. Each project receives a unique phone number and email address so anyone on the jobsite can call, text or email notes to that phone number or email. A GPS location feature time stamps and dates exactly when and where each not was recorded.

Video: How NoteVault Mobile Reporting App Can Protect Contractors

The transcribed notes are then pulled into a detailed, professional PDF report that includes all photos, videos and notes attached to each project. Notes can also be viewed online in real time. This documentation can help provide protection if delays or disputes arise, Downs says.

Daily PDF reports are then emailed to the user (or can be emailed to multiple stakeholders for each job).

Video: How NoteVault Voice-to-text Mobile Reporting App Works

Another feature of NoteVault is that it integrates with other software such as Evernote and Box. NoteVault consolidates Evernote notes from all team members and even subcontractors into one collaborative report. It then automatically creates Auto Reports from your Evernote notes that are automatically sent out the very next day at a time you specify. NoteVault also lets users pre-select categories that automatically group Evernote notes on construction reports. Integration with Box enables construction workers on the jobsite to record a report with NoteVault, which is then automatically filed and indexed in Box for easy accessibility, sharing and collaboration across the entire organization.

The unique AlertMe! feature is designed to be used in the event of an incident on the jobsite. Using the AlertMe! feature, a person can call a NoteVault phone number which then generates simultaneous outbound calls to all key stakeholders and documents the call. A follow-up text message includes the name and phone number of the person who reported the incident as well as the time and date of the report and the address of the incident location.

In addition, NoteVault provides a phone number where workers can anonymously call in to report minor safety issues they see on a jobsite.

App features:

  • Voice recording from locations with/without cellular service
  • Attach unlimited number of pictures and videos for each project
  • Automated time/location GPS location stamps
  • Checkpoint restart for lengthy uploads
  • Written PDF reports auto-generated from voice notes
  • Collaborative PDF reports auto-emailed to team members
  • Keyword notification sends automatic email notifications to users immediately if a "keyword" the user defined is included in a note
  • Online calendar gives users a "heads up" on documentation deficiencies
  • Notes stored and saved in the cloud
  • Users can comment on online notes
  • Weather feed pulled in three times a day
  • Facebook style online news feed improves communication between team members

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