What is HVAC Field Service Software? (And Why You Need It)
The difference between a good HVAC company and a great HVAC company is customer service. In addition to performing the requested maintenance services, customers expect a reliable HVAC company to give an accurate arrival estimate, provide timely billing, and keep thorough records. In fact, customer experience is expected to overtake price as the key brand differentiator.
While your employees are undoubtedly experts at their jobs, manually logging will inevitably lead to customer service mistakes and record errors.
Fortunately, there is now a solution to streamline recordkeeping, arrival estimations, and more with field service software. Here are a few reasons why HVAC field service software is becoming increasingly popular.
Efficient Scheduling and Dispatching
The mobile workforce that HVAC field service software empowers makes scheduling and dispatching much more efficient. The scheduling and dispatching feature allows dispatchers to double or even triple the number of trucks they can schedule per day. By making each dispatcher more efficient, managers can better balance their team by hiring fewer dispatchers and investing in more technicians.
If an appointment is canceled or takes longer than expected, the software can reroute trucks in the most efficient way possible. The rerouting feature increases customer satisfaction as a truck will still arrive at the site on time. It also saves the field service company money as the software can calculate the most efficient route possible to reduce fuel costs.
Dispatchers can also communicate seamlessly with technicians through the mobile app, and some solutions even allow SMS messaging.
Overbilling clients or sending bills weeks or months after the appointment is annoying to the client as it distorts their accounting processes. HVAC field service management software eliminates manual processes and allows technicians to create the bill on the spot. The software automatically calculates the invoice and can include discounts, warranties, and more.
The billing history is automatically submitted to the database, and past transactions are also available to the client to view.
Most HVAC field service software also comes with a mobile app that the client can use to view all of their records in one location.
Services like Uber and Lyft have conditioned customers to expect instant access to GPS tracking. Field service software for HVAC adds an extra level of professionalism by enabling GPS tracking. Rather than calling the client to let them know where you are, they're welcome to check your status at any time.
GPS tracking is also useful for managers as they can instantly pull up any truck's location at any given time. Therefore, managers can track how long drivers are on breaks and record their route times.
Cutting Edge Analytics
COVID-19 has brought new challenges to HVAC companies, and it's more important than ever before to understand what technicians, tools, contracts, and services bring the most profit and which ones are bloating the company. To cut costs effectively, managers need accurate analytics.
Field service software for HVAC offers a clean analytics dashboard with customizable graphs and reports that allow managers to easily visualize what efforts are profitable.
Additionally, if you have to lay off some of your staff, or if you want to award performance-based bonuses, you can pull up reports to track which technicians have added the most value to your company.
Improve Inventory Management
One of the most frustrating situations for service technicians and customers is lacking the appropriate tools to perform the job. Arriving on-site unprepared wastes fuel, reduces the technician's efficiency, and risks angering the customer.
Field service software provides an easy solution to this problem as it automatically tracks inventory. If technicians predict a job will need certain materials, the software can search through various vehicle's inventory and send an appropriately equipped truck to that location.
Managers also have instant access to inventory and can easily place orders for new parts and restock the trucks without assistance from the field technicians.
Logging all information in a consolidated database makes it easy for clients, managers, and service technicians to view the same information and reduces blunders in communication chains.
Instant access to historical records helps service technicians better estimate how much time they will spend on-site and the tools they will need to perform the job.
They can also research maintenance history and provide better recommendations to clients based on the information.
Many field service technicians say their biggest pain point is not having access to information they need to complete the job. By adopting a field service software, this pain point is eliminated and makes each field service technician more efficient.
Consumers are becoming increasingly concerned with their vendor's carbon footprint. In fact, 70 percent of North American residents believe that brands should be environmentally friendly. One of the best ways a field service provider can go green is by adopting a field service software.
By performing all recordkeeping tasks electronically, your company eliminates paper waste and reduces unnecessary fuel emissions by reducing inefficient routing.
Communication is critical for any business to run smoothly, though it can be difficult when your team is several hundred miles apart. Rather than calling or texting team members and clients individually, the mobile app allows you to see exactly where your trucks are at any given moment.
This reduces the number of calls and messages a field technician must respond to on the job and allows them to be more efficient and focus on their work. Some software even allows messaging within the app, which provides a consolidated archive of relevant conversations.
HVAC field service software allows your technicians to perform their job more efficiently. When comparing various field service software solutions, look at reviews, and be sure that the software is designed specifically for HVAC companies.
The features mentioned above are standard in most software solutions, and with a little training, field service technicians should be able to operate them easily. Shop around and inspect various field service solutions. A great HVAC field service software provider will offer a wonderful product, responsive customer support, and a deep understanding of the HVAC industry.