Improve Field Service Management to Retain More Clients
19 January 2022
As the field service management landscape evolves to meet modern needs, retaining clients must be treated as a priority for your business to thrive.
Traditionally field service technicians were heavily reliant on time-consuming manual processes riddled with the potential for human error. But, times have changed. So too have customer expectations.
But getting your whole team on board with a new way of thinking is a tall order – unless everyone understands why. It may not be obvious at first glance, but retaining and keeping existing customers happy is everyone’s responsibility.
The reality is, businesses that opt to ignore client expectations are putting their profits on the line.
🔍For example, did you know that in 2018 businesses collectively lost £55 billion in revenue due to poor customer service alone?
With this in mind, let’s look at the benefits of retaining customers and some best practice customer retention tips for field service businesses.
THE BENEFITS OF RETAINING CUSTOMERS AND FIELD SERVICE CLIENTS
There are a number of benefits to retaining customers:
IT’S CHEAPER TO RETAIN EXISTING CUSTOMERS THAN ACQUIRE NEW ONES
While data varies across industries, research concludes that customer acquisition is far more expensive than retention.
🔍In fact, it may cost your company up to five times more to acquire a new customer than to keep an existing one.
One of the reasons is that attracting new customers requires constant marketing and sharpening of your products and services to stay ahead of your competitors. Yet, when your customers are already loyal and satisfied, your competitors make less of an impact.
And once you have a good rapport with a field service client, they may even provide you with valuable feedback when prompted. Embracing both positive and negative criticism is key.
Feedback. Encourage your clients to tell you what changes and improvements they’d like to see, and determine what specific aspects of the experience you deliver are making your top customers loyal to your brand.
Ultimately, identifying the ways you can replicate your offerings is an effective way to grow your business and increase customer engagement.
IT’S A BOOST TO YOUR BOTTOM LINE AND BRAND REPUTATION
A healthy bottom line translates to sustainable growth for your company.
🔍But did you know that prioritising customer experience and increasing customer retention by just 5% can lead to a 25% increase in profitability?
Strengthening customer retention requires incentivising your current field service clients to engage more with your brand.
You can use customer surveys, online reviews, and social media interactions to gauge how likely your brand is to receive repeat business from happy field service clients.
Also, measuring and monitoring key performance indicators (KPIs) will keep your company and your team of technicians moving in the right direction.
KPI metrics you may consider adopting may include:
- Time to schedule
- Time to first contact
- Response time
- Travel time
- Customer satisfaction rates
- Jobs completed per day/week/month
- Number of repeat visits.
LOYAL CUSTOMERS ARE MORE FORGIVING IN THE EVENT SOMETHING GOES WRONG
Staggeringly, research conducted by American Express concluded that a third of customers would consider switching companies after a single instance of poor customer service.
And the quickest way to lose trust in your customers is to deliver a disappointing customer experience.
In the world of facilities service management, late appointments, cancelled jobs, and frustrating double bookings can all create a negative outlook for your business.
🔍While the majority (67%) of customers would likely forgive after one mishap, on repeat instances there’s a strong likelihood they’ll seek services from a competitor.
So how can you deliver a better field service customer experience? Let’s get into it. 👇
HOW TO IMPROVE FIELD SERVICE MANAGEMENT AND RETAIN MORE CLIENTS
DELIVER A FASTER, SLICKER AND MORE CONNECTED SERVICE
As the field service landscape evolves to meet modern needs, it’s clear that creating an excellent customer experience must be treated as a priority for your business to thrive.
At a minimum, customers expect you to deliver the exact products and services they pay for. But in field services, you’re often reliant on your employees to meet those expectations.
For that reason, it’s vital that your field service technicians can stick to assigned schedules even when they’re away from the office or other team members.
Real-time technician visibility. To deliver a faster, more seamless service for your field service clients, you must have visibility on your technicians’ real-time location, performance and adherence with assigned jobs and hours.
Tracking your workforce can help you to allocate work orders faster and manage the distribution of tasks as the need arises.
The end result? With increased connectivity and greater access to precise data, a cloud-based FSM system like BigChange can help you provide a proactive customer experience service that’s both efficient and effective.
COMMUNICATE WITH CLARITY AND TRANSPARENCY
Let’s be real, no one likes to be left in the dark or to be taken by surprise. When looking for ways to retain your clients, start with communication.
Take the time to send your field service clients helpful updates or notices about their upcoming service, project status, or price quotes.
Empower teams with customer insight. When technicians have access to field service software, they can be more open with customers. Equipped with essential information about the individual customer’s history, they can accurately explain changes and decisions made after past enquiries and engagements.
Provide self-service. You can also put the control back in your customer’s hands by providing a self-service option that allows them to choose the services and appointments they want. From automatic texts to tell customers when you’ll be with them, to a self-service portal to make job requests, a tool like BigChange means you can quickly and easily keep your customers up-to-date.
👉Better yet, your clients won’t have to go through the hassle of call centres and multiple customer service representatives — with BigChange they’re on a fast-track to problem resolution.
IMPROVE VISIBILITY OF YOUR INVENTORY AND INDIVIDUAL CUSTOMER PROFILES
When a customer experiences an issue and reaches out to your company for field service assistance, the reality is that the clock has already started ticking for your team.
Every minute that passes counts when it comes to customer retention.
The speedier and more helpful the service you provide, the happier the customer. But what technologies or tools can you harness to deliver a fast and efficient field service?
The answer: digital job management software.
Opt for a complete software solution that connects a technician’s mobile device to your organisation’s CRM system, inventories, and customer profiles in real time.
That way, your field service workers have the knowledge databases to deliver impactful customer experiences that lead to higher retention.
ADOPT A CLOUD-BASED PLATFORM
It’s no secret that today’s emerging technologies will power tomorrow’s customer service experiences.
Rather than purchasing expensive systems and equipment for your business, you can reduce costs by partnering with a cloud-based field service management software provider. Moving to the cloud is guaranteed to slash the costs of managing and maintaining your IT systems in the long-term.
In fact, early adopters of cloud-based CRM systems have discovered a competitive advantage over other companies that aren’t using modern ways to connect with their customers.
🔍The average person uses 36 cloud-based services daily — meaning you’ll be meeting your customers where they already are.
- With a cutting-edge workforce management system like BigChange, you can organise and optimise for the most significant factors that influence the customer experience.
- Your back office teams can work in collaboration to easily monitor, schedule and dispatch service requests so that your field-based workers’ strongest skills are deployed to meet customer expectations the first time, every time.
- Plus, field service management software can enhance your business by making it more efficient and providing employees with the resources to make their jobs easier.
In summary, investing in a field service solution will establish better customer relationships, improve retention rates, reduce operational costs, and improve cash flow.
MEET TODAY’S FIELD SERVICE CLIENT EXPECTATIONS
The writing’s on the wall. Today’s customers expect an effortless and dependable experience.
Yet, although your field service clients may be expecting more, it can be difficult to meet expectations while juggling other business factors, including costs, resources, and budget.
Between customer demands for faster service and a preference to have problems solved without having a technician physically present in their home — field service is ripe for digital disruption.
But, even with the technology and software options available on the market, too many businesses are still reliant on outdated job scheduling tools or don’t have an existing system at all.
And that’s why using a comprehensive, paperless field service platform like BigChange is essential. 👇
It can help your company harness the power of the cloud and improve profitability. Here’s how:
- Gain a bird’s eye view of your operations – You can use precise data and up-to-the-minute information to optimise the performance of field service engagements.
- Easily get the right people, tools and resources to the right place at the right time – So you’ll be able to meet your customers’ high standards and retain them long-term.
- Track and control every job, from quotation to payment, on a single platform – Everything you need to know will be at your fingertips, making it easy to plan, manage, schedule, and track your field-based workforce and transport operations.
Plus, you’ll be able to make the most of our dedicated, expert support. Find out more.
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