Wednesday, 3 March 2021

HSE Australia goes live with Alpha Tracker

HSE Australia, based in Adelaide, South Australia, is the latest organisation to go live with asbestos software Alpha Tracker.

HSE Australia is now live with Alpha Tracker

Judy completed her training of the HSE asbestos professionals this week and they are now live and enjoying the benefits that Alpha Tracker delivers:

  1. Before the asbestos survey - reduce admin and improve scheduling

  2. During the survey - help asbestos surveyors with on-site data & photo capture in our app

  3. Improve the lab - reduce paperwork, increase quality

  4. Faster and better reports - one-click asbestos reports in your format

  5. Sharing reports - clients can read and download reports as soon as they are signed off

  6. Invoice your work - click to generate and send invoices; post into Xero or QuickBooks.

We'd love to help you to improve your asbestos consultancy.  Get in touch!  Click here for Australia or here for UK.

Asbestos managed by Alpha Tracker in two more organisations

Two more organisations, one in the UK and one in Australia, have chosen Alpha Tracker to manage their asbestos.

Water NSW supply and seek to improve the availability of water essential for the water users and communities of New South Wales, Australia.

NHS Tayside is an NHS board which forms one of the fourteen regions of NHS Scotland. It provides healthcare services in Angus, the City of Dundee and Perth and Kinross. 

New Alpha Tracker asbestos software users - WaterNSW and NHS Tayside

We're delighted to be working with these two organisations.  If we can help yours, get in touch!

Tuesday, 2 March 2021

Another Alpha Legal update today!

We're publishing another Alpha Legal update later today!

Look out for the new features to help you to communicate safely and easily with your clients:

  • in-built calendar - book appointments with clients and share the appointment

  • better document signing - easier for your clients and better for you

  • improved emails - easy to read, shorter, better instructions for your clients.

Another Alpha Legal update goes live today

Why not join the growing family of Alpha Legal users - estate agents, solicitors, will writers, accounts & estate planners? Alpha Legal - easy, safe & secure.

Support desk performance in February 2021

Our support desk performance improved for urgent issues in February, back to a more normal 92% of calls being solved within 2 hours.  This is a significant improvement compared to January's performance.

We're continuing to monitor our performance when dealing with lower priority problems as 84% overall is not as good as we'd like.  Working from home is the key factor here - the support desk staff simply can't do their jobs as well when they are not sitting in the same location.  

Hopefully, we'll all be back to normal soon!


In time (%)

In time (H) (%)

In time (total)

In time (H) (total)

Total solved































Friday, 26 February 2021

Manage your company vehicles in Alpha Tracker? Who knew!

If you're using Alpha Tracker to manage your entire business - from quote to invoice - why not manage your vehicles too?

Use the Vehicle & Vehicle Check screens (and the accompanying mobile app) to keep your fleet in order.

Alpha Tracker - vehicle checks

Feedback from users has been great.  Here's a comment from Sarah, Technical Manager at one of our asbestos consultancy clients:
"Many thanks, and we are really liking the new changes, especially follow-ups and van tracking"


Another 50 asbestos consultancies have chosen Alpha Tracker in Australia & New Zealand

Another landmark for Judy & Leanne based in our Alpha Tracker office in Adelaide, South Australia!

Another 50 asbestos consultancy clients have joined the Alpha Tracker family and are using our asbestos & environmental software to:

  1. improve their admin with integrated quoting, project management and staff diary

  2. save time and improve quality on-site with smartphone surveying apps

  3. increase throughput and efficiency in the lab

  4. produce asbestos reports with one-click 

  5. share reports and results with clients using the integrated portal

  6. invoice for work completed and send invoices automatically to Xero or Quickbooks.
Want to see these benefits for your own asbestos consultancy?  Get in touch, we'd love to hear from you.  Click here for New Zealand or Australia or here for UK.

Alpha Legal features on a US software blog - "Alpha Legal ... safe and secure"

Our Boston (USA) software partners Alpha Software have blogged about Alpha Legal stating "Alpha Legal keeps legal and financial data and communication safe and secure".

Alpha Legal is getting noticed world-wide

We're about to publish a major Alpha Legal software update ready for our next release in March. Exciting times!

Thursday, 25 February 2021

When Alpha Tracker met DIY SOS!

Our asbestos consultancy clients Allium Environmental were thrilled to be part of a recent DIY SOS BBC TV programme with Nick Knowles.  

When Nick Knowles met Alpha Tracker!

Allium asbestos surveyor Charley York used asbestos software Alpha Tracker and the Tracker Mobile app to undertake a refurbishment & demolition survey on a property in Barnstaple, Devon.

Here is the link to watch the programme yourself!

Tuesday, 23 February 2021

"Easy Close" feature in Alpha Tracker - another hidden gem

A client has just called our support desk to ask for help.  They are making the most of a quiet day in the office to tidy up old projects in Alpha Tracker.  They had hundreds of old jobs to close. "Could we do it for them?" they asked?

No need! Easy Close to the rescue!

Easy Close - what a time-saver!

Easy Close is one of the many time-saving features we've built into Alpha Tracker over the years.  Don't forget, we use Alpha Tracker to run our own business so things that annoy you will irritate us and we get them sorted!

Monday, 22 February 2021

Alpha Tracker Release 34.1 live this week

Our asbestos and environmental services software, Alpha Tracker, is receiving an update this week.

Release 34.1 adds some new features but is mainly a performance and patch update to Release 34.

One of the new features we like the most is so simple - we don't why we haven't thought of it before!

If you search for a job or quote using the menu and there is only one match, Alpha Tracker will now jump straight to it without displaying the search results first.  Easy!

Jump to results with Alpha Tracker!

What documents are being shared via Alpha Legal?

One of Alpha Legal's most popular features is the ability to securely share documents with clients.

How to share a document using Alpha Legal

We've been reviewing the stats of the documents that are being shared and it's fascinating!
  • Estate Agents are mainly sharing their Terms of Business (for signature) and draft sale particulars

  • IFAs are also sharing their Terms of Business and notes of financial reviews

  • Will Writers are sharing draft wills and invoices issued for completed services

  • Accountants are using Alpha Legal to share P11d forms, tax returns (Trust & private) for approval
Are you using Alpha Legal to share something completely different?  Let us know!  If we publish your story on our blog you'll get another 500 credits, worth £75, absolutely free as a thank you.

Thursday, 18 February 2021

Calendar feature is taking shape in Alpha Legal

Booking an appointment to meet your client?  Setting up a Zoom call and want to share the details with a prospect?  You can now do all of this, and more, all within Alpha Legal!

Alpha Legal's new Calendar feature

We've incorporated some amazing features into our Alpha Legal diary system including the ability to

  • instantly share the appointment with your contact
  • add the meeting to your Outlook or Google calendars
  • plot the meeting (when we're allowed physical meetings again!) on a map, automatically, and
  • see all of the appointments, at a glance, on the contact screen or their timeline.
It's now so easy to keep on top of the meetings you have with your prospects and clients.  Keep an eye out for more features being added to Alpha Legal later this month.

Wednesday, 17 February 2021

Estate Agents across the UK are joining Alpha Legal

Estate Agents across the UK are signing up with secure communication service Alpha Legal.

Requesting ID by email is not secure! Estate Agents are still asking for personal and sensitive information by email and Alpha Legal is the easy-to-use & cost-effective solution to this problem.

Meeting clients face-to-face isn't easy - use Alpha Legal instead

If you can't meet your clients in person, how do you check their ID documents (driving licence, passport, bank statements)?  Is it OK to ask your client to take a photo of these documents and send them by email? No! Emails are not secure - you can read more about the risks here.

Alpha Legal solves the security problem for Estate Agents.  Estate Agents use Alpha Legal to request ID from clients moving home.  It's so easy for the client to use, too, even easier than attaching a photo to an email!

In additional, Estate Agents use Alpha Legal to send their terms of business, share draft particulars of sale for approval, even their final invoices! More and more features are being added to Alpha Legal every month.

Alpha Legal subscriptions start at only £10/month with no long-term commitment.  Register in just 60 seconds by clicking this link:

Friday, 12 February 2021

The importance of technology in the legal industry - Alpha Legal is for you

Countrywide Tax & Trust director Charlotte Ponder has just written an excellent article for Today's Wills & Probate about the importance of using technology in the legal sector:

Alpha Legal works in partnership with Countrywide and their Legacy software

We're really pleased to be working in partnership with Countrywide (and other large will writing businesses such as Legacy Legal) to integrate our Alpha Legal secure client communication platform with their order processing software, Countrywide Legacy.

Find out more about Alpha Legal here - and register, risk free, to try it for yourself.

World Cancer Day reminds us all of the dangers of asbestos

This article caught our eye.  

Yet again, asbestos-related cancer has bereaved another wife after causing the premature death of her husband, a worker exposed to asbestos fibres early in his career.  World Cancer Day is a good reminder of the misery that cancer causes to millions each year,

Here at Start Software, we're proud of the role that our asbestos software Alpha Tracker plays in detecting, recording and managing asbestos in more than 4 million buildings worldwide.  Our software is used by hundreds of asbestos surveyors every day to record suspected asbestos, take photos and sample details, and then (once the lab has analysed those samples), to report findings by way of report back to the client or building manager.

If we can help you to manage your asbestor or if you're an asbestos consultancy looking for the best support and software in the industry, please do get in touch

Thursday, 11 February 2021

1,000 free Alpha Legal credits to share! Refer a friend

Are you finding Alpha Legal useful and easy to use? Making use of the ID requests, secure client forms & messaging, shared documents and e-signatures?

Tell a friend, they sign up, you'll both get 500 credits (worth £75) for free!

Alpha Legal's "Refer a friend" feature - share 1,000 credits

You can make as many recommendations as you want and each will credit your account (and theirs) with 500 free credits. Thanks for helping us spread the word about Alpha Legal - easy, safe and secure.

DMT Vehicle Leasing overtakes competitors with "Tracker" from Start Software

DMT Vehicle Leasing, one of the UK's leading vehicle leasing businesses, has chosen the "Tracker" system from Start Software to manage their quotations, orders and document delivery processes.

Vehicle Leasing Tracker

Tracker manages the whole process in a secure and easy-to-use way.  There's no software to install; DMT will access Tracker via a web browser, and all data and all documents are stored safely in the cloud.

If you have a vehicle leasing business and are fed up with expensive software or terrible support, come and talk to us.  Our Vehicle Leasing Tracker system suits all sizes of business and can be customised to suit you.

Another NHS Trust chooses asbestos software Alpha Tracker

We're delighted that another NHS Trust has chosen asbestos software Alpha Tracker to manage asbestos within their buildings.

NHS Tayside will be using Alpha Tracker from next month, keeping an independent copy of the asbestos reports and data collected by their asbestos consultants.

NHS Tayside has chosen asbestos software Alpha Tracker

If we can help you to manage your asbestos problem, get in touch

Wednesday, 10 February 2021

Alpha Legal ideas coming thick-and-fast from users

We were part of a Zoom call today to talk software & systems with some of the UK's leading will writers and estate planners.  We were keen to share our Alpha Legal plans and get feedback and ideas!

What a Zoom! Great ideas from the UK's leading estate planners

Want to try Alpha Legal for your own will writing business?  Register risk-free from this link and you'll get an extra 50 credits for free!

Follow our Alpha Legal news by reading or subscribing to our blog at

Alpha Site major update now live

Alpha Site, our new platform for on-site audits, inspections, health & safety reports and more, has just received a major update.

All of the new features are documented in an updated User Guide, available on laptop or smartphone once you are logged into the system:

All of Alpha Site's new features are in the updated manual 

Want to be part of our Alpha Site testing and development programme?  Get in touch!

Monday, 8 February 2021

Alpha Legal "Contact Timeline" now in beta

We're just testing a new feature in Alpha Legal - the "Contact Timeline".

This is an at-a-glance view of the interaction you've had with your client.  It shows the forms sent (eg ID request or COVID questionnaires) and the documents shared.  

Alpha Legal's new "Client Timeline" feature

The idea is that you'll have an easy-to-read visual indication of your contact with your client.  The feature is in beta test now and will in the live system later this week!

Friday, 5 February 2021

January 2021 - a disappointing month on our Support Desk

We had a disappointing month on the Start Software Support Desk.

You can see from this graph that our "high priority problems solved in 2 hours" performance score has dropped below 90%.

We are looking through all of the high priority problems logged in January to see what the root cause was.  Initial analysis suggests a combination of factors:

  • the success of our new Alpha Legal platform has taken us a little by surprise, generating a number of calls from new users

  • many problems were logged as High Priority but the clients were not available when we tried to contact them to discuss, and

  • some problems were not progressed quickly enough by development staff.
We'll be focussed on improving these stats for February, hopefully back to our normal level of service.

Wednesday, 3 February 2021

Legacy Legal integration coming soon in Alpha Legal

Here at Alpha Legal, we have been busy working with Legacy Legal, one of the UK's leading estate planning businesses.

Legacy Legal's comprehensive and informative website

Alpha Legal users will soon be able to send secure ID requests to their clients live from their Legacy Legal consultant portal.  They will also be able to share estate planning reports and invoices via Alpha Legal's document sharing features, without leaving Legacy Legal at all!

Export to Legacy Legal live from Alpha Legal

The Legacy Legal integration is now in beta test and should be live within the next 7-10 days.  Contact Matthew at Legacy Legal for more info.

Return to Sender! Easily return unacceptable ID requests

We've published a new feature in Alpha Legal! Return to Sender is available now.

"Return to Sender" allows you to return ID requests to clients if something is wrong.  Perhaps the photo they have sent is too blurry or they have misunderstood your request.  It's easy to fix now in Alpha Legal.

Return to Sender - new feature in Alpha Legal

Click "No" here to enable the "Return to Sender" button:

Click "Return to Sender" to send the ID request back

Then add notes for your client to read:

Easily tell your client what's wrong

Alpha Legal is easy, safe & secure.  Register risk-free here!

Tuesday, 2 February 2021

Secure document sharing now in Alpha Legal

Need to share documents securely with your client? Fed up of complicated or expensive systems? Worried about email, DropBox or Google Drive security?

Alpha Legal has the answer.  Drag & drop a document, click to share, job done!

Document sharing with Alpha Legal is easy, safe & secure

Alpha Legal: easy, safe & secure.

Monday, 1 February 2021

1,000,000 asbestos register QR codes scanned - another Alpha Tracker milestone!

The Alpha Tracker asbestos software milestones are coming thick-and-fast in 2021... we've just had our 1,000,000th asbestos register QR code scanned!

Alpha Tracker can create QR codes for sites, buildings, rooms, even specific items

When you generate a QR code in Alpha Tracker, you can print it wherever you want (including on asbestos reports, registers, contractor signing-in books and health & safety documentation). There is no charge to print and use a QR code, the functionality is built in to all Alpha Tracker systems.

Would you like to use QR codes in your own asbestos consultancy business?  Get in touch!

Record month for ID requests in Alpha Legal

January 2021 was the busiest month ever for Alpha LegalID requests from will writers, estate planners, accountants and estate agents were up nearly 200% compared to December.

Here's a quick video to remind you of the importance of using a secure service like Alpha Legal to onboard your client and request their ID:

Want to try Alpha Legal for yourself?  It takes just a couple of minutes to sign up - click here!

Alpha Legal - easy, safe & secure.

Friday, 29 January 2021

Alpha Legal feedback "excellent, robust, easy to use... highly recommended"

We all want satisfied customers.  But what we really want is delighted customers!

 Simon Bowman, one of our Alpha Legal will-writing users, has just posted this:

"For all the will writers out there, the Alpha Legal platform is an excellent, robust, easy to use tool which helps obtain keep and store clients ID at the touch of a button. Highly recommended"

Thank you Simon Bowman from Bowman Estate Planning - much appreciated!

Lovely feedback from an Alpha Legal user

Want to try Alpha Legal for yourself? Click here!

Our Alpha Anywhere-built app is managing asbestos in 4 million buildings worldwide

Our Alpha Anywhere-built system, Alpha Tracker, is now managing asbestos in more than 4 million buildings worldwide. That's incredible!

We use Alpha Anywhere from Alpha Software to build most of our software systems, whether they are destined to run in a browser, on a phone, or a laptop.

Can we help you with your idea of a new software system?  Get in touch!

Thursday, 28 January 2021

Alpha Tracker milestone! 50 million asbestos items recorded

Alpha Tracker, the asbestos software system from Start Software, has reached an incredible milestone.  50,000,000 items of asbestos data have now been recorded in the industry-leading asbestos platform.

Alpha Tracker has recorded an incredible 50 million items of asbestos data

We're so proud of our asbestos consultancy and property management clients who have, between them, recorded so much data about this deadly material.  Together, we are helping to manage asbestos in more than 4 million buildings across the UK, Australia and New Zealand.

Can we help you to manage your asbestos problem?  Get in touch - we'd love to hear from you.

150 free credits! Alpha Legal supports Data Protection Day

Today is the 15th annual Data Protection Day. Who knew?! We did at Alpha Legal!

Alpha Legal has been built to protect your business from security threats and to help you to communicate securely with your clients.  We fully support the Data Protection Day initiative.

We want to provide tools to our clients which protect them and their clients and which are a joy to use.  That's what Alpha Legal is all about!

To mark the event, you can sign up to Alpha Legal, risk free, with promo code DATAPROTECTION150 and get 150 free credits to use as you wish.

Alpha Legal supports the Data Protection Day initiative

If you are a will writer, estate planner, accountant, solicitor or estate agent and you are still sending emails to your clients with sensitive content, it's time to take a look at Alpha Legal.  Find out more here!

Wednesday, 27 January 2021

Request ID from your client from only 20p!

20p doesn't buy you much, but it is now enough for Alpha Legal users to request photographic ID from their clients!

Our basic ID request costs 5 credits.  With credits now starting from as little as 4p each, that's only 20p!

20 pennies... enough for an ID request in Alpha Legal!

Read more on the Today's Wills & Probate site here:

Alpha Legal featured on Today's Wills and Probate

Tuesday, 26 January 2021

Alpha Legal form credits now even better value!

We've listened to our larger Alpha Legal will writing clients and made a new 10,000 credit pack available in the online shop.  This brings the price of each credit down to only 4p!

New 10,000 credit pack available

What does this mean for Alpha Legal users sending forms to their clients?
  • a basic ID request (with one form of photo ID) can cost as little as 20p

  • a gold-standard ID request (with more photo ID and a short video) can cost only 60p

  • and COVID forms (for visiting clients at their homes) are still absolutely free!

Monday, 25 January 2021

If it can happen to BA, it can happen to you. Protect yourself with Alpha Legal

British Airways is one of the biggest businesses to ever suffer a significant data breach.

Websites are springing up to encourage BA customers to take legal action and join others for compensation for their loss of personal data.  Nearly half-a-million people had personal data stolen after BA servers and apps were compromised by hackers and affected customers may be entitled to claim £000s.

British Airways' data breach 

The BA story is a warning shot for us all.  Every business needs to take cybersecurity seriously.  

Alpha Legal is your defence against loss of data, GDPR breaches and damage to your reputation and business.

Alpha Legal helps you to secure your client relationships

Register risk-free and try Alpha Legal for yourself.

HSE Australia choose asbestos software Alpha Tracker

HSE Australia, based just a few miles away from our Alpha Tracker office in Adelaide, has chosen asbestos software Alpha Tracker.

HSE Australia choose asbestos software Alpha Tracker

HSE Australia offers a wide range of environmental services including asbestos management, occupational hygiene, contaminated land surveys and management and a variety of laboratory services.  Judy & Leanne are looking forward to helping HSE's environmental professionals to improve their productivity and effectiveness through the use of Alpha Tracker.

Welcome on board HSE Australia!

Thursday, 21 January 2021

Another 1,000 ID checks via Alpha Legal!

Another week, another 1,000 ID requests have been processed by Alpha Legal!

When onboarding clients, are you still asking for ID documents by email? 

It's time you switched to Alpha Legal! It's easier for you and your client and it is secure.  Asking for ID documents by email is not secure and could lead to a GDPR breach and identity theft.  Read more here.

Sign up now - risk free - and try Alpha Legal for yourself.

Southern Asbestos Services is live on Alpha Tracker

Training by Zoom is fun! 

Kim completed the Alpha Tracker asbestos software training for Southern Asbestos Services yesterday.  Welcome on board!

The excellent Southern Asbestos Services website

Can we help your asbestos consultancy to be more efficient and have happier staff and customers?  Get in touch to find out what Alpha Tracker can do for you.

Wednesday, 20 January 2021

E-signatures in only 30 seconds! Alpha Legal is easy, safe & secure

Want to share a document with a client for an e-signature in Alpha Legal? It's as easy as 1-2-3:

  1. search for the client

  2. upload the document, and

  3. share it with them for signature. 
The whole process takes only 30 seconds in Alpha Legal! Here's the proof!

Tuesday, 19 January 2021

New "sign with comments" feature in Alpha Legal

When you ask a client to electronically sign a document within Alpha Legal, what happens if they want to comment on it in some way?

For example, they may be happy to sign but want you to know that they have a question or a concern.

Or perhaps they don't want to sign because they can see a mistake in the document?

We've added a new feature to allow your client to either:

  • sign with a comment (and you will be notified at the comment has been made), or

  • reject the document and NOT sign it - again, with reasons.
Your clients can now "sign with comments" or choose to reject a document

Our beta testers are checking the new feature now and, if all goes well, we'll be publishing the new feature into Alpha Legal later this week. 

New Alpha Legal "how to" video on YouTube - setting permissions for users

Once you have invited users to join your company account, how do control what each user in Alpha Legal can see and do?

This is an important question.  You may want a "shared contact list" which all consultants can see, or you may want to keep each user's client list separate and hidden from each other.  It's your choice!

Similarly, the credit bank can be shared amongst all users, or can be allocated individually.  We've tried to make Alpha Legal work for every size and style of business.

Here is a quick video to show you some of the options.  Hope you'll find your chosen option here!

Alpha Tracker Release 34 is now available

150 new features, performance updates and bug fixes.  That's Release 34 of asbestos software Alpha Tracker!

The official software version number is 4870, which means that there are 150 or so changes since Release 33.  These updates focus mainly on:

  • performance - many screens (especially those relating to asbestos registers) now open more quickly

  • bug fixing - we've been working really hard over Christmas to clear every bug, however small, that we know about

  • security - this version of Alpha Tracker is even more secure than ever and is compatible with the latest Alpha server software.
You can read Kim's release notes here as usual:

Do get in touch and let us know what you'd like to see in Release 35.  We want to hear from you!

Monday, 18 January 2021

How do I update Alpha Legal? Stop trying! You don't need to!

One of our early Alpha Legal subscribers (an estate agent) has just asked "How do update Alpha Legal when new features become available?

Great question - the answer is easy, you don't need to!

Alpha Legal runs in your web browser with no software to install or update - ever

Alpha Legal is a web service that doesn't require any software to be installed on your computer.  You simply go to and log in.  Simple as that.  You can access Alpha Legal on any device from anywhere.

When we launch new features, all subscribers get access, straight away.  It really is as easy as that.

Want to try Alpha Legal for yourself to secure your client relationships?  Register, risk-free, here!

Pioneering asbestos treatment gives Mesothelioma sufferers new hope?

Regular readers of our asbestos software blog (relating to asbestos software Alpha Tracker) will know that we are supporters of asbestos disease charities, in particular Mesothelioma UK.

We were delighted to read this article from Wales Online about a pioneering treatment which looks like it may give new hope to people with this dreadful disease:

Let's hope that the immunotherapy cancer treatment that is being trialled truly is a worthwhile and effective therapy and a beginning to the end of the deaths caused by exposure to asbestos.

Friday, 15 January 2021

Alpha Legal performance update is now live

If you're an early Alpha Legal subscriber, you'll be pleased to know that we've improved the performance of the system throughout.  

All screens should be faster to open but let us know if you think we can do better still!

Alpha Legal is now faster than ever

We've got some exciting new signature features coming next - watch this space.

"Client timeline" feature coming soon in asbestos software Alpha Tracker

We're developing a new client timeline feature in our asbestos software, Alpha Tracker.

It's early days but Tom is hard at work with the new, graphical display of the history of client's interaction with your business, from first contact, through quotations, projects, invoices and more.

It won't make the cut in Alpha Tracker Release 34 so we'll keep it for the Spring release 35.  If you have any other ideas for the next version of Alpha Tracker, let us know!

Identity theft is in the news again - Alpha Legal is a key part of your defence

Defend yourself and your clients against identity theft with Alpha Legal's secure forms & messaging feature.

There are so many ways to steal an individual's identity and the problem is in the news again:

For more information, check out our new Alpha Legal website here.