You’ve done it! You have started your own company and have managed to grow it into what it is today. Maybe you have a few employees, maybe you have a fleet of 20 trucks. Maybe you are happy with the size of your company, maybe you want to add a truck or three. Everyone has a different vision of their company, but there are certain things that any company of any size will have in common. The more you grow, the harder it is to keep up with and remain efficient while ensuring that your customer service remains intact, maintaining what your customers have come to expect. It can get overwhelming trying to keep up with everything from scheduling, to billing, to basic logistics. Enter your new assistant: Field Service Software.
There are many different options out there for you to look over, and the choices can be overwhelming, but the benefits are worth the price of admission. It will take a lot of stress off you, and not even place it on another person so you do not even need to feel guilty about it! These software options can help organize you in a way you never would have imagined.
There are some powerhouse software options out there that are immensely popular and some lesser-known options. You will surely need to do your research to find out which option would be best for you and your company, versus what works best for others. Only you can know what would best suit your needs for your goals and your company alone.
With that said, there are certain factors that you should consider while deciding on field software, and we will take a look at some of those factors in this blog and weigh out some pros and cons as well as discuss some of the benefits of having access to this technology.
Obviously, one of the main things to consider when choosing a field service software is cost. You will need to work within your specific budget. This can help you to narrow down your options so you can work within those parameters as a way to narrow your search and make it less overwhelming. You also want to make sure that the software works in a way that is intuitive to you and your business. You will need to ensure that it is usable for both you and your techs and that it will accomplish what you would like it to.
Tipping the Scales
Once you have narrowed things down via the cost factor, it is time to look at another crucial factor. Will this software be able to grow along with your business? If the software cannot scale to your needs, then odds are it is not an excellent choice for you. If you find a software that has a multitude of features that you like, but you want to grow your business into a fleet and this software can only handle the size of a small company, you are going to need to find another option. You need something that can support your growing business and what you want to achieve. Keep in mind the scalability along with your specific business goals when browsing your choices for field service software.
The next couple of things to consider seem to go hand in hand. Odds are you are going to need a field service software that comes with a mobile app, as you and your techs are out and about all day, not sitting in front of a computer. They are going to need the ability to both input and access information on the go, whether on their tablet or phone. Hand in hand with the mobile app is accessibility. Imagine your techs have a job to complete that is in an area without reliable cell service. How are they going to be able to manage updating information or invoicing without that connection? There are many options out there for people who regularly encounter this issue. There are options out there that will allow technicians to work in the software while without access and will immediately sync up with your system and other information once they are back in an area with service, making the software usable at all times, despite the availability of service coverage.
Another feature that might be important to you is the ability to invoice or synchronize with your current invoicing system. This ability can greatly help to organize you and keep everything all in one spot. This will help to lessen the chaos of shuffling paperwork and keep things easier for you and your team while out on the road in the field. You and your technicians will have less to keep track of and worry about with the ability to manage billing and invoicing digitally. However, many of these systems also handle invoicing in their software, so this step is only a necessary concern if you are committed to utilizing your current billing software.
While utilizing field software to handle billing, payments, and invoicing is convenient, you will need to ensure that the option you choose is secure. Your customers will not want to continue to do business with your company if you cannot keep their information safe and secure. That would be a big red flag for them, and you cannot blame them. You would not want to be doing business with a place that cannot ensure that confidential information is kept private, making this one of the largest considerations to take into account when looking at your options for a field service software. If a customer cannot trust you with their information, why would they trust you in their homes to fix issues? This is vital, and you need to earn their trust personally as well as with their information, or else this relationship will not be symbiotic or successful and you can lose your customers over something that is not in your control after you have selected the field service software. Making sure to look into a software’s security measures before finalizing your decision on this matter is one of the last, but certainly not least, factors to consider.
Is It Worth It?
This all seems like a lot of options to consider for a single software, and the decision can be overwhelming, but this will help you to grow your business and keep you organized. Many benefits accompany the field software that you should consider before you decide to forgo the purchase of new technology.
The greatest reasons for acquiring field management software are the scheduling and organizational features. Everything can be kept in one place and many of the software options allow customers to see available time slots and schedule service calls online. These calls can be dispatched out to the team member closest to the location of the service call, allowing for better customer response time. Better customer response time leads to satisfied customers who will potentially go on to tell their friends and family about how efficient and friendly your staff was! Things update in real-time, leading to fewer trips needed back to the shop in the middle of the day. This leads to greater efficiency as well as less money spent on gas, two birds with one stone! With less to keep track of in their truck and real-time scheduling, the benefits to you and your employees are easily seen. Many of these software options can handle invoicing or integrate with your invoicing software, leading to one less step in that process. There is no more middleman, it is taken care of on the spot, making everything easier for your employees and customers.
Another time-saving feature that some field operation software options have is inventory management. Gone are the days of counting and tracking every part that you use manually. Utilizing some of these software options, you and your crew can simply scan or input parts as they either load them onto their truck or use them while out on a call. This will update your inventory in real time and help you with ordering without the tedious task of counting all the time or hoping that your techs remember to tell you that they used specific parts at each individual service call. Not only will this make things easier on you, but it will also make things easier for your team, as well. Efficiency, ease, and ecstatic customers.
Field Service Software is surely a worthwhile investment that will make your everyday operations run a little more seamlessly for you, your crew, and your customers. It is definitely worth considering regardless of the size of your business. Just make sure that you pick a software that you are comfortable utilizing and that will align with your goals. It will help even the most organized business owner to run a smoother operation.
Written by Catherine Lauer – Marketing Communications Specialist, Supply Smart