UPS and FedEx aren’t the only companies that can offer same day delivery. Field service can as well. That is if you have the right service dispatch software in place to handle same day service delivery. Think of emergency situations. Your customer is experiencing a problem right this second and needs someone on site. There is no time to delay in their minds, but you, on the other hand, might not have a free technician. They might be assigned to different calls, out on installations, or be a great distance away from the customer.
There are simply many reasons why same day service can be very challenging for certain field service businesses. Especially the small to medium-sized businesses that don’t have the same workforce a larger business would. However, that doesn’t mean same day delivery isn’t achievable. You just need the right tools, scheduling processes, and insight to get to the job done. And then you can become an on-demand, same day delivery type of service. That has the added benefit of becoming a company your customers can trust by offering same day service.
Start with service dispatch software
Before getting to far into the weeds with becoming a same day service delivery business, you need to eliminate the processes that slow you down. Think of every process your business has to do to go from customer phone call to technician at their door.
The process includes:
- The initial phone call from the customer and gathering information
- Building a work order
- Scheduling and dispatching a technician
- Getting the work order to the technician
- Get the technician to the customer
This is a very simple service call, but it’s the average emergency service call from a customer. And at each step in the process, you can save plenty of time by using service dispatch software as the backbone of your field service management. One of the biggest hold-ups of becoming same day or on-demand is the manual processes that take time to complete. Each stage has a process that if completed with service dispatch software, will drastically save time.
Initial phone call for information – Have customers use online customer portals to input all the information
Build a work order – Automate work order creation for recurring work orders, use templates, and have a system that quickly allows you to build a work order from scratch
Scheduling and dispatch – No more whiteboards and Outlook calendars. Using service dispatch software shows you every technician’s schedule, and routing tools show you where they are to pick the nearest one.
Work order to the technician – Having technicians drive back to the head office to pick up paper-based work orders is replaced by giving them a mobile field service app.
Look outside your own workforce
One of the easiest ways to become a same day service delivery business is to hire more technicians. Except, you can’t always count on those calls coming in and wages could get out of control if you hire a lot of hands that aren’t working. Instead, turn to subcontractors and third-party vendors. Hire them on an ‘as needed’ basis.
To a service dispatch software, subcontractors look exactly the same as your in-house technicians. They just have different rates for their costs, and a payment voucher needs to be created to pay them. The great part is, your service dispatch software handles both. That benefits your reputation not only with customers but also those subcontractors you want to hire. You become known as someone who can offer same day work and get your subcontractors paid quickly.
Think outside the box
Sometimes being on-demand and same day can’t be accomplished by a person going to the site. Sometimes it has to be done remote. If you are already working with customers, the Internet of Things (IoT) can give you remote help options. Same day service can simply be someone guiding another individual through the process of the repair over the phone. Or it can be remotely accessing a computer from another office. And with IoT, you can reduce the stress of emergency situations by keeping on a watch over your customer’s equipment. If a machine falls out of normal working order, your service dispatch software will create the work order and make it ready for dispatching automatically.
Scheduling and dispatch’s role
The giant in the room when talking same day service is scheduling and dispatch. How do you get your technicians from one job to the next when an emergency call comes in. You can’t take on more calls if your workforce is already booked. And not having a clear view of each technician’s schedule can make it difficult to move calls around and add more. That’s what makes Whiteboards and Outlook schedules hard to use, as you don’t get a clear picture of your entire business.
With service dispatch software, scheduling and dispatch tools give you that entire company-wide schedule. See exactly what each technician has on their plate and move them if needed to make room for emergency calls. On top of that, using a routing tool, see where they are in relation to the emergency call. Find the closest technician and route them there without having to have a lot of communication about it. By optimizing their route, the next work order will appear on the mobile field service app, ready for them to complete.
To become a same day service delivery business, you need as much visibility into your tech’s movements as you can. Knowing where they are, where they are going and having the ability to move them where you want quickly is what makes you that kind of business. And that can only be achieved by using a service dispatch software which will open up new visibility into your technicians’ movements.