Finding the best field service management software for your business can be time consuming, and let’s face it, a little daunting. With so many different solutions available on the market today, how do you find the right fit? In this blog we’ll take a look at the importance of field service management software, the benefits it can bring your business, a round-up of some of the best field service management software on the market and what puts them in that category. Plus, we'll also provide an overview of the features you should be looking out for when shopping around. So let’s get started.
The Importance Of Field Service Management
Field service management requires you to juggle multiple plates. All while ensuring operations are running smoothly, customers are happy and your business remains profitable. So it’s essential for your business to maintain an efficient and streamlined process for managing all of the services you offer, while keeping operational costs to a minimum. This is where field service management software helps.
With field service management software, you have one centralized hub where you’re able to manage all your business operations. It automates routine tasks, giving teams more time to focus on other areas. As well as aiding collaborative communication across different departments. There are a whole range of benefits that we’ll dive into a little later on.
If you’re not managing your jobs and services day-to-day in an efficient manner, your customers will start to notice. And that will impact your profits and growth. Which is the last thing you want. Especially in the field service industry, as your customer’s are the lifeline of your business. Next, let’s take a look at a few of the benefits when implementing field service management software.
The Benefits of Implementing a Field Service Management Software
Even the best field service management software won’t do everything for you, however it can automate a lot of your manual processes as well as a host of other benefits. Including improved communication amongst teams, effective scheduling and materials management and real-time data analytics. Let’s have a further look into each of these benefits.
Communication between departments or even across the same teams, isn’t always easy if you’re working with manual processes. With field service management software, all of the relevant information is in one place. Whether it’s the accounts department that needs to look at an invoice, or a field staff member needing specific job details. There may be occasions where your field staff are on a job and the customer has requested additional work, or weather conditions have delayed the project. Instead of lengthy phone calls back to the office, your field staff are able to update via a mobile app. The information is then sent back to the office in a matter of seconds. Customers are kept informed with emails and electronic invoicing, so all parties are working from the same page.
Effective scheduling and materials management
Managing employees who are travelling up and down the country on a daily basis is a full-time job in itself, so why not make it a little easier. Field service management software provides you with the tools to effectively manage employees schedules, as well as providing them with the ability to update or amend on-the-go. You can schedule multiple people to one job at a time, or you can look ahead of time with day, week and month calendar views. This type of feature allows you to always know who’s available and when.
In addition to scheduling, a lot of field service management software includes inventory management. This ensures that staff are well-prepared for their tasks, reducing the need for return visits or delays due to missing materials or expertise. Plus, you’re able to accurately track what’s coming in and out of the business, set stock alerts and prioritize materials if and when required.
Real-time data reporting
In order to accurately forecast for business and gain insight into where you’re making and losing money, it’s important to have access to data. This is pretty time-consuming when you’re working with paper files and spreadsheets, you could spend hours looking for one invoice. Field service management software allows you to access real-time analytics and reporting features, which provide insight into business operations. By having access to accurate data, fast, you can make smarter business decisions based on up-to-date information.
That is just a handful of benefits. The best field service management software will improve the customer experience, keep labor costs down, automate processes and eliminate the risk of human error.
Exploring the Best Field Service Management Software
So you know you want to continue to grow your business and take advantage of field service management software. Now you’ve got the difficult decision of choosing the right platform. Let’s take a look at just a few of the best out there.
Designed for complete business efficiency, make smarter decisions with one software. From job quoting, job scheduling, inventory tracking, invoicing, workflow management and more. You have complete visibility of your business and are able to make better informed decisions. With real-time data reporting and the ability to build and customize your own forms.
Manage your field staff and daily operations with connecteam. Similar in functionality to Simpro, it has scheduling, work order management, digital forms and a mobile app. Plus GPS time tracking so you can always see where your employees are, and get updates throughout the day.
If you handle a lot of documentation, look no further than Fluix. The software is focused on digitizing your business paperwork, with the ability to upload and manage your documents. Plus, your customer service will see a boost in productivity as you can quickly send out invoices and other documents within minutes.
Ideal for the plumbing, electric and HVAC industries. This field service management software is great for any size business. With scheduling, invoicing, tracking and task management capabilities, plus integrations with popular accounting software; QuickBooks. Mimize costs and streamline your workflow so you can gain the upper hand in your chosen industry.
What Makes a Good Field Service Management Software?
When it comes to choosing the best field service management software for your business, there are a few key factors to consider. First and foremost, you should look at the total costs of each platform. This includes not only the upfront costs, but also any additional costs associated with implementation, maintenance, training, upgrades, and support. You should also consider scalability: does the software offer enough features and customization options to grow with your business? Additionally, you should make sure there is a dedicated customer support team to assist you with any queries.
Next, you should look into specific features. Does it include CRM capabilities? Can it track field staff’s progress in real-time? Does it offer route optimization tools? Is reporting available? What about a mobile app? Make sure that the software has everything you need to keep your business running efficiently. It’s also important to make sure that any third-party integrations are compatible with the field service management software of your choice.
The last thing you want to look at are customer reviews of the software, this is common practice for a lot of people. When was the last time you booked that last minute holiday without looking at reviews of the hotel first? It’s the same with field service management software. You want to hear from others who are using the software to get a better understanding of if it will suit your needs. By taking into consideration all of these things, it should be a lot easier to decide the best field service management software for you.
Field service management software allows you to access real-time analytics and reporting features, which provide insight into business operations.
4 Signs You Need Field Service Management Software
There are a few tell-tale signs that you need to upgrade your workflow, automate tasks and maintain operational efficiency with cloud-based software. Let’s take a look at the signs you need to look out for.
- Manual processes are slowing you down: Manual processes are often inefficient, prone to errors, and labor intensive. A good field service management solution can automate these processes, allowing you to operate more quickly and accurately without sacrificing quality of service.
- Inaccurate billing: The last thing you or your customers want is incorrect information on an invoice. Automated systems can compile accurate customer information quickly, eliminating the risk of inaccurate billing due to human error or lack of complete information.
- Lack of visibility into field operations: There is no easy way for you to track the performance of field staff, unless you use technology to do so. Field service management software allows you to stay informed on a jobs progress, as well as ensure that employees are following protocols correctly and completing tasks on schedule.
- Customer inquiries not answered efficiently: Your customers are the lifeline of your business, so ensuring there is a smooth workflow between inquiries coming in and work being booked is paramount. If you find yourself getting snowed under with work requests and potential customers being left out in the cold, field service management software can help. Building leads and having a database of your customers helps overcome those issues.
While the term “best” is subjective, there is software out there that is the best field service management software for your business. By following the guidance in this blog you’re on your way to making a well-informed decision. So if any of those signs sound familiar to your business needs right now, don’t wait any longer. And, if you’re looking for further help with best practices within field service management, check out our ultimate guide.