Frequently asked questions

What is Boxfile?
Boxfile is a software tool that allows you to create virtually any sort of report or survey template, conduct those surveys in real time on a tablet PC, taking supporting photographs as you go, synchronise the data with the main database and publish those reports which automatically alerts the individuals responsible for the corrective action.

What sort of organisation is Boxfile aimed at?
Organisations that are responsible for at least 20 buildings that employees or the public have access to, or businesses that conduct surveys on behalf of clients who do.

How does it save me money?
The cost savings for Boxfile are two fold. Firstly, because the surveys are conducted directly onto a tablet PC, there’s no need to write up the survey into a Word template or database once you get back to the office, and waste time sorting out your photographs and laying out the report – it’s all done for you.

Secondly, Boxfile automatically allocates each issue to the individual responsible for it, emailing them with details of all their actions for the report, telling them what they need to do and when it needs to be done by, saving hours of administration allocating and notifying manually.

You, as the estate manager can monitor the management analysis screens to see what’s being done, as those responsible sign off their issues directly in Boxfile.

Do we need any special software to run Boxfile?
Boxfile’s engine is the industry standard SQL database. Changes are you already have SQL server on your network, so the database can just be added to that. If not, it will run happily in SQL Express, which is a free, fully featured version of SQL Server that has a smaller maximum file size limit.

The front end application is a Microsoft Access database which can be run in Access runtime, a free version of Access which is limited to only allow you run existing databases rather than designing your own.

If you’re already running Office 2010 Professional (which includes Access 2010) then you won’t need this!

What is the cost structure of Boxfile?
Unlike most other products, Boxfile is not a cloud based solution. You buy an everlasting license to operate the software as a one off cost and you can install it on as many PCs and laptops as you wish.

You can take out a support contract with us which includes the rental of the first tablet PC, and you can rent additional tablets for an extra annual fee.

Why not cloud based?
With cloud based systems, you never stop paying for them. You either pay a fixed rental fee all the time you want to use it, or pay a fee for each report you create.

Am I limited to a certain number of users?
No, you can install Boxfile on as many PCs and laptops in your organisation as you need.

Am I limited to a certain number of report types?
No, you can create as many report types as you wish.

Am I limited to a certain number of reports?
As standard Boxfile allows you to create 400 reports in the system. This should be enough for all but the largest high street retailers. If your reports expire and you want to create a new report for the same building, you can save a copy of the old report, delete it and then create a new report without adding to your total report tally.

Can I buy additional report capacity?
Yes, you can purchase more report capacity if you need it. You can add this at any time.

We have a specific report style. Can we change the way the reports look?
Hartlebury Software offers a customisation service for clients. We can create bespoke report templates, assist in setting up or importing your existing question sets, or adding features into Boxfile that you need.

If we take out a support contract, what do we get for that?
A support contract includes the rental of your first tablet PC, pre-loaded with the tablet version of Boxfile and configured to synchronise with the main SQL database version of Boxfile that runs on your network.

You also get unlimited telephone support during normal office hours through our dedicated helpdesk and free incremental updates to the software as they are released.

What if we need more than one tablet?
You can rent additional tablets pre-loaded with the tablet edition of Boxfile for an additional annual fee. The hardware support for the tablet is included in the annual fee, as is the support for the software itself.

How often are the tablets renewed?
All tablets are renewed on a three year cycle, ensuring you’re always running with up-to-date hardware that is in good condition.

We use an external contractor for our surveys. Can we still benefit from Boxfile?
Yes! If your contractor uses Boxfile to conduct your existing surveys, they will save time carrying out the surveys themselves and you will save time managing the rectification of the issues they find.

Our contractor has their own set of questions. Can we still use Boxfile?
Yes! Just load your contractor’s questions into Boxfile ready for them to use!

Do you provide question sets for different types of surveys?
Currently no, but we’re working on it! We aim to provide certified question sets for the most popular types of surveys with updates as regulations change.

How does Boxfile know who to allocate issues to?
When you set up Boxfile in the first place, you create categories for each report type. Categories will be are cost centres, departments or contractors who are responsible for sorting out issues, such as fire specialist, electrical department, carpentry, or just housekeeping. You say who is the head of each of those categories.

Likewise you can create departments for your organisation, set who is the head of that department and as you set up your buildings you say which floors each of those departments are on.

As you conduct a survey you can also say who is responsible for that building and whether that person is automatically responsible for all issues in that building.

This is enough information for Boxfile to work out who is responsible for each issue.

We use a number of Apple Macs in our organisation. Can we still use Boxfile?
Although Boxfile relies on a Microsoft Windows platform, as long as your Macs are fairly recent and use Intel processors, we can install a piece of software called Crossover that will allow all the Windows applications needed for Boxfile to run on your Macs.

I’m concerned about the security of our data if your Company goes bust, or we fall out!
Your data is stored on your own network, not in the cloud. If you decide to stop using Boxfile, you can export all of your data through the menu options, or create a backup of the SQL database to use elsewhere if you want.

If we cancel our support contract in the future, what happens?
If you have any tablets under the support contract, you’ll need to give them back, so you would have to carry out any new surveys using pen and paper and upload them into Boxfile once back at your desk. You could have the software loaded onto your own tablets if you wished. You would no longer receive any new updates that are released, and you’d be reliant on your own IT support to sort out any future issues you might have with the product, but other than that you can keep using it for no further cost for as long as you want!

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