How to Stop Pencil Whipping from Hurting Your Cannabis Dispensary

By November 10, 2021 Blog
staff using digital tablet

‘Pencil whipping’ occurs when employees tick off checklist tasks or audit reviews without actually doing the work. It’s a practice that plagues many companies, but it’s hard to eradicate. And when it becomes a habit, it can damage the business.

Cannabis dispensaries can’t afford to let employees or auditors sidestep essential procedures. There’s too much riding on consistent, reliable adherence to regulations and brand standards. But it’s impossible for you or your managers to watch every team member at every moment.

That’s where digital apps come to the rescue. They make it easier for employees to do the work and for you to monitor their progress in real time. So pencil whipping fades away.

Ensure All Regulations Are Met With Digital Checklists.

Your business faces a daunting set of regulations, and all eyes are on the new cannabis industry. If your employees are avoiding the procedures that ensure you’re compliant, you could be hit with big fines or even shut down.

With paper checklists, you have no way to confirm the pencil ticks represent actual work done. However digital checklists record the location and time of sign off, sending you a report as soon a list is complete. You’ll see when someone starts a list, when they’re finished, and where they were doing the work. You can even lock checklists after they’re due to keep people honest.

Digital checklists support photos and videos as well, so you get visual confirmation that safety measures are complete and equipment is set up or stored properly. You’ll catch any mistakes before they cause problems. Even if you’re not in the store, you’ll have peace of mind knowing that all the important tasks are actually getting done.

Because employees can access checklists right on their mobile devices, they’ll never be unable to finish one because they couldn’t find the right copy of the form or because they accidentally filled out the wrong form. Mobile checklists are also easier to use because they don’t require paper, pencil, and clipboard.

With digital apps, your safety and compliance data uploads automatically to the cloud. As a result, you have instant reports when regulators visit, and you never have to spend time copying paper forms into spreadsheets.

Easily Handle Shifting Requirements With Customizable Action Plans.

Many cities and states are still adjusting regulations for cannabis sales. When new rules come along, you need a way to ensure shops are compliant without disrupting business or damaging customer experience.

Paper checklists have to be printed out and distributed to every store before they can be used, and with multiple paper versions floating around, there may be confusion about which form is the latest. But digital checklists can be updated from your mobile app and pushed to all employees immediately.

You’ll be able to react swiftly to changes in the law, letting workers know exactly what they need to do. There’s no confusion about new procedures versus old, and you have confirmation that every store is in compliance.

Improve Operational Efficiency and Lower Costs.

Pencil whipping damages your business beyond compliance. When checklists look golden, but the work isn’t being done, you can’t identify problems that could be increasing your costs or degrading the customer experience. If you don’t see problems, you can’t fix them.

Digital checklists push their data to the cloud, so you can instantly compile results by individual, store, or region. The app shows you trends in performance over time and helps you compare one location to another. With paper checklists, you must painstakingly enter all the forms into a spreadsheet and get software to analyze it before you have a reliable health check on your business.

With an accurate picture of performance trends, you’ll identify individuals who aren’t meeting benchmarks and might who need more training. Alternately, falling checklist completion for locations or regions may point to other issues. For example, you might find problems with the work environment, equipment that needs repair, or inefficiencies that waste employee time.

If you find problems and devise new procedures to address them, you can easily update the checklists for every work role affected and push them to each person’s mobile device. Employees understand what they need to do differently, and your new policies are implemented quickly and accurately, getting your business back on track.

Power Up Training With Digital Checklists.

Growing businesses are always looking for good employees, but it can take months before a new hire is productive. Checklists shorten that onboarding period by giving new people a clear set of instructions on their mobile devices.

After initial training, the digital checklists reinforce what they’ve learned, help them build good work habits, and keep you updated on how they’re doing. The data from previous weeks and months will help you set performance benchmarks, so you know when new folks are up to speed.

Benchmarks and training checklists also ease the transition for opening additional stores. They help managers get a fresh crew on board, and you can track the location’s progress against the performance of established stores to ensure their success.

Lean on Digital Checklists to Enhance the Brand.

In the highly competitive cannabis market, brands are competing for recognition and status. When you’re freed from having to monitor employees in person or sift through paper checklists to assess performance, you have time to innovate new services that capture more market share and differentiate your brand.

Digital checklists also help you ensure the highest and most consistent standards at each location, even if you can’t get to every store every day. All employees are following the same steps, so no one becomes a rogue operator. Photos and videos confirm that displays are set up correctly and stores are clean. And for high-touch service, such as delivery, you can ensure employees are staying safe while providing outstanding customer experience.

How MeazureUp Helps You End Pencil Whipping for Good

MeazureUp’s digital checklist and mobile audit tools make it easy to monitor work activities onsite or remotely. Employees are less likely to skip or fake checklists because they’re right on the mobile device – easy to follow and easy to complete.

Plus, MeazureUp gives you time-stamped and location-tagged notifications when checklists are done. Photos and videos let you “see” the work from wherever you are. And with MeazureUp’s unlimited user subscription model, you can use checklists with every employee for the most accurate, fine-grained assessment of compliance available.

Experience the power of digital checklists and audits for your dispensary. Click here for a free trial.