How Mobile Technology Helps Shift Focus to the Customer

by

Steve Kiernan
Co-Founder & CEO
February 6, 2018
/
minutes to read

Get to the Point

  1. Defy Customer Expectations - You can remember small details about past visits, and re-address them if you have easy-to-access notes on each property. You can also have more accurate estimations of when somebody can service their house with real-time GPS dispatching.
  2. Give A Great Impression - Being Relaxed, prepared, and on-time will start relationships with the customer on the right foot. First impressions set the atmosphere for the rest of the visit.
  3. Improve Customer Satisfaction - With technology it is easier to keep track of additional needs the customer may have. Helping solve problems before they happen can improve customer satisfaction, and delight them.

Field Technicians are the face of many companies and now mobile technology investments must shift in focus from just cutting costs and increasing efficiency to really being about the customer.  When looking for mobile technologies, companies must ask themselves the following questions:

How can this technology make my company meet and exceed our customers’ expectations?

How can this technology give the best impression of our company?

How can technology help with customer satisfaction and help our company work toward continuous improvement?

1. How can this technology make my company meet and exceed our customers’ expectations?

Companies need to understand that service is the road to differentiation and profitability.  Field service management software will allow for better communication and collaboration between field technicians and back-office support staff.  When field service techs and dispatchers don't work in silos, customers win. For service technicians to make a great first impression, real-time access to customer history information is essential. This data will allow your service technicians to see what opportunities exist to suggestively sell to the customer they are servicing.  Also, being armed with the customer history information needed, as well as any information that might be needed to get the current service job done gives your service techs a level of confidence that is essential to meeting and exceeding customers' expectations.

2. How can this technology give the best impression of our company?

Mobile technology makes any business, big or small, stand out, and it gives the impression that you and your service technicians are tech-savvy.  Many of our customers have said, it is easy to sell the latest energy-efficient equipment when you demonstrate that your company is tech-savvy by utilizing a field service management software.  Perception is reality.

3. How can technology help with customer satisfaction and help our company work toward continuous improvement?

Field service management software will give your service techs access to real-time data, as well as manage real-time insights into ways to improve processes.  Also, field service management software connects the back office with the customer and allows them to gain a view into the customer experience.  Finally, as management, you can make decisions based on real data and not just by gut feeling.

In order to grow your company, you need to focus on the customer.  The focus on the customer means that your service technicians and the rest of your company are no longer operating in silos.  Mobile technology will help with communication and collaboration and in turn increase customer satisfaction and revenue.  If your service technicians are still showing up to calls with clipboards, and paper forms, chances are your company is not creating the best first impression.  

Look at Pricing

The start of the year is a great time to look at pricing. Usually, you have an idea of how your company fared the year prior, and you want to ensure you will continue to grow in the months to come. Many of us make New Year’s resolutions with respect to spending or saving in our personal lives, and it’s no different for business owners. Making sure your pricing is in line with where it should be is one of the strongest ways to start the year the right way.

Part of looking at your price book is finding where the issues are, and that can take time. An HVAC company in January is going to be very busy, so it’s a difficult time for a close look. However, a plumbing company might not be as busy. Whenever you tackle this job, your best bet is to look at what your labor rates are. Start there, and let it trickle down across the board. Ask yourself, “Are my labor rates helping my business stay profitable?”

Remember, there are many different services out there and many different groups or communities that you can engage. Never hesitate to say, “Hey, I’m a business owner in Florida. What should my labor rates be?” You can build your price from there. There are also some great billable hour calculators available.

Set Goals

There is no better time of year for looking inward than January. Set your personal goals and company goals for the following 12 months. If you can break those down into departmental goals, even better! Perhaps that means a CSR booking closing rates a little better, or a truck doing 250,000 a year rather than 200,000.

Many companies have found that using an Objectives and Key Results (OKRs) goal-setting system pays off. Looking for a guidebook when it comes to OKRs? Check out Measure What Matters: How Google, Bono, and the Gates Foundation Rock the World with OKRs by John Doerr. 

One key question is the best way to handle setting goals: Is it smarter for business owners to handle this solo, together with staff, or to delegate completely? 

The best approach is to set goals at the department level. As an owner, you need to take the time to understand what the goals are in each department, and make sure they are in line with your goals for the company. No one likes to set unattainable goals for themselves, so make sure you push your departments to set goals that are lofty, rather than simple ones to feel good about hitting. Entrust your staff to aim higher, and watch how they respond.

Pass Along these Points

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