The HG Companion application is a pocket version of the Desktop Report Writer that can be used on a mobile device. While using the Companion, you can navigate through the home and still be able to write comments, take photos of deficiencies, and make inspection checks. This article will explore how to edit a report on the HG Companion for iOS and its features.
The HomeGauge Companion on iOS has both dark and light modes. In version 6 and above, this mode depends on your device's global display settings. This is in accordance with Apple's app development standards. To change the view mode, open your device's settings, navigate to Display & Brightness > Appearance, and change the selection. HomeGauge will now display as desired.
When opening the HomeGauge Companion for the first time, signing in and downloading templates is important.
- Click Menu > HG Services.
- Click on Username and Password to enter your login credentials. After you are signed in, you can use the other options to get cloud templates, appointments, or reports.
You will be brought to the main home screen when you first open the HG Companion.
By default, the home screen will always show the sections for Customer, Report Info, Misc, and Select Report Template.
The Menu button, shown above, will display options such as New Report, Open Report, Save Report, More, HG Services, and About.
You can either start a new report from the companion, download an existing appointment, or start from a cloud report.
Start a New Report From the Companion
- From the Home Screen, click into sections for Customer, Report Info, Misc (if appropriate), and fill out the info.
- Click Select Report Template and select a template to start.
Start a Report From a Downloaded Appointment
- From the Home Screen, click Menu.
- Click HG Services > Appointments.
- If you want to download a single appointment, click on that appointment and then click Save in the top corner. To download multiple appointments at once, click Select in the top corner and place a check next to each appointment you want to download. Click Import.
- Access the Home Screen again and click Menu > Open Report.
- Select the appointment you previously downloaded and click Open.
- Select a template and begin the inspection.
Start a Report From a Cloud Report
- Access the Home Screen.
- Click Menu > HG Services > Get Report From Cloud.
- Select the report you would like to download and click Download.
- Access the Home Screen again and click Menu > Open Report.
- Select the report you previously downloaded and click Open.
- Select a template if necessary, or continue the inspection from where you left off.
When you click Select Report Template, you can select from the templates currently on the device. Use the drop-down near the top of the page to access the template categories.
Click on one of the templates to select it.
When a template has been selected, and you are working on an active report, all the component sections will be listed on the Home Screen. Scroll through and click on the item you wish to edit.
Within each section, you can return to the previous page by clicking on the navigation button in the top left.
Duplicate a Section
- After you have selected your Template on your Companion, touch the Components Header -- the word 'Components' just to the right of the green house icon.
- From there, select which component you'd like to create duplicate sections for and hit the menu button, OR touch and hold down (long-hold) the name of the Component you need to duplicate. It will give you the option to add a duplicate section.
- Type in a name there OR click the dropdown arrow for pre-existing duplicate section choices. Initially, you will add 2 sections. If you need to add more than two, simply repeat step 2: long-hold the Component's name and choose 'duplicate.' Add the name of the next duplicated section.
- Continue filling out your report as usual.
If you need to delete or edit a duplicated section, you can long-press the name of the duplicated section and choose an action from the menu. You will be able to delete the section by choosing Remove. You can change the section's name by choosing Edit. You can also rearrange the newly duplicated sections, moving them up or down by using the up or down arrows in the menu.
Note: Making these edits on your Companion device are report changes that apply only to this current report. This is not a template change.
When inside a component section, you will find your column headers underneath each inspection item.
Click on each one to make an inspection check. The column header will be highlighted with an orange rectangle.
In order to add comments, click the arrow next to an inspection item.
Click anywhere in the Empty Comment box to add, edit or itemize a comment.
A box will appear containing different actions available.
Some of the notable options include:
- Add Autocomment Here - Add an autocomment from your local comment list.
- Edit This Comment - Type in a comment using your device's keyboard.
- Add Itemized Item - Add an itemization to the inspection item.
- Erase Comment - Erases all text to start over.
With iOS, you can use your device's internal text-to-speech mechanic to turn spoken comments into text. Click Edit This Comment to bring up the comment box and the onscreen keyboard. Click the microphone button on the keyboard and, when prompted, speak the comment into your device.
Above the comment box, you will find the below icon. You can click that to access the CYA feature for the current inspection item you are in. The CYA will provide a list of things to look out for involving that item, which is great for new inspectors.
To get to the Styles & Materials for an inspection item, click the Styles & Materials button at the bottom of the screen while inside a component item.
Use the drop-down at the top of the screen to navigate through the styles. Click on an item to highlight a material option.
Click the Overview button at the bottom of the screen to go into the section overview.
You can edit the intro or footer paragraphs by clicking the Edit buttons. You can add section overview photos by clicking the Section Pictures button at the bottom and adding a photo like normal.
When in the comment editing section, you can add media, such as photos and videos, to a report. Click one of the buttons below the comment box to add the media of your choice.
There is an option to change the improve the quality of photos taken. By default, photos captured by the companion are compressed to 640x480. By following the steps below, photos will be taken with your camera's default resolution.
- Tap Menu, Tap More, Tap General
- Tap Use Larger Photo Size so that a checkmark appears to the right of the text
The icons from left to right are the following:
- - review added photos/videos, or add media from device
- - take a video for a new itemized section
- - take a video for the current section
- - take a photo for a new itemized section
- - take a photo for the current section
When you click the photo or video buttons, your device's camera will open, allowing you to take a photo or video. Once taken, the photo will show on the review screen. You may also see that the number at the bottom of the comment section will change to reflect the newly taken photo or video. Use this to confirm that media has be added.
Click the button on the far left (symbolized by a film canister) to go inside the review section. Here you may cycle through the photos and videos for the current itemization and review what is attached to the comment.
Add a picture label by clicking in the area underneath the image buttons and typing a label. You can click the button that looks like a magic wand to access the picture label auto-comments. Use the camera and video buttons to snap another photo or video.
The buttons with folder icons, and , will allow you to access your device's film strip and add media taken outside of the HG Companion. Orange will access videos and green will access photos.
Click the Menu in the top right corner to delete the picture/video or change the order of the items.
Creating an Invoice
You can create and edit invoices on the companion, but it is not the preferred method due to limitations. The best way to create an invoice is on the Inspector Dashboard when creating an appointment. To learn how to create and edit invoices on the Inspector Dashboard, please visit Inspector Dashboard: Create and Manage Invoices.
Adding or editing services and sending the invoice to the customer must happen in the Desktop Report Writer. To learn more, please visit Desktop Report Writer: Invoices.
- Click the left menu
- Click Misc
- Slide over to the Invoice
- Select the services
- You may enter information in Payment Method, Payment Status and Payment Notes
- When uploading the report to the Desktop Report Writer, the invoice will be sent to the cloud.
From the Home Screen, you can view the summary by scrolling all the way to the bottom and clicking Summary.
Each summary item will be shown with its accompanying photos. Swipe the screen right and left to navigate through the items. Use this feature if you want to review the major concerns with a customer during the inspection.
When the inspection is complete, send the report to the cloud for later retrieval. Follow the instructions in the article iOS Companion: Transferring a Report.