As the winter is nearing you should be concerned about your greatest assets; your technicians. These people hold skills that are imperative for your company to continue to operate and grow. As the dark and stormy winter is nearing, not only is their safety becoming more of a concern, but so are your profits. If you have field service technicians and they need to drive from one job site to the next, they are at risk. As the roads become icy and more dangerous as the winter continues, it will become harder for your technicians to travel. These poor conditions increase their travel time, making it harder to be on time for appointments as well as to reach as many customers as they typically would.
How can you solve all these problems while still keeping your field technicians’ safety priority? Here are some ideas:
1.) Schedule Optimization
Schedule optimization is extremely helpful to all companies with field service technicians. These technicians are resources to your company, and in order to increase the value of a resource, that resource must be optimized to its full potential. Schedule optimization software creates a schedule that is most efficient for the company by taking into account all factors; for example, this type of scheduling will be sure to assign a technician for a job if that technician is qualified to complete that job. This adds value to that resource because the resource (technician) does not need any extra help or assistance, and they are able to complete the job in an efficient manner.
2.) GPS/GIS Technology
Your technicians are constantly on the road. If you are scheduling manually, you may not even realize that a technician may have driven from one town, to another, and back to the first town, thus wasting gas and losing valuable time and money. If you think about it, the problem can be solved pretty easily by using GPS technology. This technology uses street-level routing to optimize the schedule in a way that decreases travel time for the technician. A decrease in travel time means a decrease in the risks associated with having a technician driving around in a company vehicle in poor wintry conditions. A decrease in travel time also means there is more time in the day to complete jobs and to meet appointment times. In turn, this increases customer satisfaction.
Mobile Workforce Management allows dispatchers to communicate with the field technicians. Dispatchers can update the technician’s schedule, upload documents and comments, and even send detailed instructions with pictures to the technician. The mobile solution works on all mobile devices, and even works when out of service areas. The mobile app store for the solution offers many different services; there are even apps that the customers can download so that they can keep track of their appointment and technicians! This mobile solution increases efficiency and keeps customers satisfied.
By utilizing these tools you are decreasing the risks that your technicians and profits are facing in winter conditions. Technicians are spending less time on the dangerous roads and more time completing jobs and meeting appointment times. This keeps customer satisfaction high, which can sometimes be difficult in poor weather conditions. This also keeps your profits high due to the fact that the schedule is optimized and travel time is decreased, allowing for more jobs to be completed. Don’t let Mother Nature scare you – take control of winter and be as efficient and profitable as ever!
Image Source: Mikey