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On World Creativity and Innovation Day, we want to recap some of the latest features we’ve launched and share a few ideas on how we’re making the BigChange platform even better.

We haven’t slowed down since achieving a Queen’s Award for Innovation in 2020. In the last year, BigChange has continued to release new tools and functions that free our customers from endless paperwork and administration, and make their businesses even stronger:

  • Working with What3Words, we added a powerful new location tool that helps achieve more precise planning and arrival times – saving valuable hours every week.
  • We created more options and customisations for document templates, helping you to showcase your business and brand the way you want.
  • We’ve added alert options for expenses requests, flagged items and stock levels, giving new visibility over key business tasks.

Jason Nash, our Head of Product, has picked out three areas we’re looking to improve even further.

World Creativity and Innovation Day

1. Switch more easily between functions

We know that one chat with a customer might mean using lots of different parts of the BigChange platform. You might need to record a new contact, estimate job costs, quote, and log sales opportunities.

We’re making it easier and faster to flick between functions and make sure the ones you need most often will be available front and centre.

2. Making BigChange even better on mobiles

Starting with the new look Customer Portal, we’re improving layouts to fit smaller screens better. We’ll be focussing on reducing the number of key clicks do get things done, and also hiding valuable but less frequently used functionality in advanced settings menus. And we’ll be making it easy for you to create processes, record vital information and make adjustments quickly.

3. Making business improvement easy with data

Organisations using BigChange automatically generate considerable data that can inform ways of doing things better. We want to make it easier for you to see and use that data to drive continuous improvement in areas such as workforce deployment, customer experience and sustainability.

Let us know how we can help

We’re always looking for customer feedback to make BigChange work even better for you.

Get in touch with Jason Nash, our Head of Product, at jason.nash@bigchange.com or through the Ideas Portal, where you can share product suggestions and vote for those you’d like most.

World Creativity and Innovation Day was founded to show that powerful, new ideas can come from anywhere. At BigChange, we’re all ears.

Our BigChange team is made up of amazing people and they want to share a snapshot of what it’s like to work in one of the varied roles around BigChange. Our next colleague is Freddie from the Product team.

Hello, I’m Freddie Carr, and I am a Junior Product Manager focusing on Templated Sites here at BigChange.

My responsibilities

The team I’m working as part of set out to help deliver a company-wide objective to provide an enhanced frictionless onboarding process for all new customers. The aim was to help make the customer experience of learning the system and developing your bespoke site as efficient and seamless as possible. Our project has since grown to be key in identifying how the BigChange system can be used to support customers’ best practices.

We create Templated Sites, which provide pre-built content for new customers based on industry-specific processes and requirements. We are developing sites with pre-populated configuration items such as job types, worksheets and automations. These are then used to show new customers how the BigChange system can be used to support best practices according to their industry. These items can be anything from favourite views to timesheet activities, and where we hope to add the most value is through further development of the scheduling, automation and reporting aspects of the BigChange system.

By providing a range of example guidance configuration items, we aim to help customers in two ways. First, to understand how they can create their bespoke BigChange system to best support the work they do. Our customers come to us as experts in their field, and we want to make the onboarding process and shift into paperless, mobile, and efficient ways of working as seamless as possible. The comprehensive nature of our system means there is so much to discover that could help your customers, and we want to show you those as quickly and effectively as possible.

In order to get the best out of the system and identify which features could make a lasting impact on their customers, we want to help point them in the right direction. By providing instructional support through pre-populated items, we achieve the second delivery aim of our project, which is to provide these items so our customers can quickly understand the system and realise value from their investment in a BigChange system as soon as possible. Ultimately we are trying to build the best way for customers to use BigChange.

What’s next?

We are now able to see how newly onboarded customers have taken their prebuilt content and run with it; making them their own, changing and deleting provided items as necessary and using our sample guidance as examples to drive their BigChange hygiene and management. In the coming months I am looking forward to collecting customer feedback from our newer customers who were onboarded with the first iterations of our Templated Sites, and to see how customers have further developed their sites using our exemplar guidance content. This will help us learn from our first versions to further develop our pre-built content. I am also looking forward to building industry-standard reports for future, improved iterations of the sites.

Our long-term aim is to create a comprehensive content library where customers have full access to browse and download a range of features and reports to meet their business needs. Our research and the content that is currently being built will be the basis for this system change.

I am also excited to be a part of developing BigChange systems to ensure we are empowering our customers in their transition to electric and sustainable fleets. Exciting breakthroughs in artificial intelligence and machine learning will have a significant impact not only on how we develop the product but also will become more of a part of the product itself.

Customer input

I would love to speak with any individuals who were involved in their onboarding process with BigChange to get their feedback on the setup of their system.”

Freddie Carr, Junior Product Manager

In addition, any feedback from newly onboarded customers who were provided with our pre-built content would really be appreciated. Customer interviews and first-hand accounts of system use are integral to our team’s understanding of how we can best help new customers and we are very grateful for those we have spoken to thus far.

The features within the BigChange system are extremely varied and comprehensive. Because of this, there is sometimes a gap between what the system is capable of and what customers are aware of. I would love to help customers better understand their system so they can get value from the full extent of its features. I hope that as part of the Templated Sites project, I can help achieve this!

Jason Nash, Head of Product, wants to speak directly to our customers about the development of BigChange, the complete Job Management Platform.

As the new Head of Product for BigChange, I want to let you know what we’re working on and give you the chance to shape what the platform will look like as we try to make it even more user friendly.

We speak all the time with BigChange customers who are passionate about getting even more value from our platform. In the product team, direct contact with customers is vital, and we’d love to hear from users about how we can make BigChange work even better for you. My email address is at the bottom of the article; please do contact me directly.

BigChange has a big product vision: we want to be the best job management platform for field service workers and their back-office teams, with a mobile-first experience that delights and drives sustainable growth for our customers. I get particularly excited about the last part as we have a lot of opportunities to help customers grow and optimise the way they work.

In particular, we want to make the user experience easy and make BigChange work even better on a mobile device.

We’re working hard to make the vision a reality. Field service jobs have a lifecycle, and each part of the lifecycle has a set of tasks that go with it. We aim to make it even easier for customers to get all of those tasks done from the same page.

For instance, the lifecycle stage for winning new business involves adding new organisations and contacts, sales opportunities and quotes. We want to make it simpler for users to run through these jobs in their average day.

We’ll be doing this at every stage of the lifecycle, which you can see in the following image – as well as for the Collaboration Network.

We’ve hired a Head of User Experience and a UX designer to make the platform work as easily and intuitively as possible. There will also be product managers for each stage of the lifecycle. Their role will be to fix any bugs, enhance existing features, and develop new functionality to help our customers grow stronger.

We’re doing customer research interviews to support this work, looking even closer at how customers use the platform and how we can improve it.

I’ve never worked with a more passionate set of customers, who want to see BigChange improve and develop further. I hope to speak to many more of you in the coming weeks; please email me directly if you’d like to be part of the customer research interviews.

Jason Nash, Head of Product
jason.nash@bigchange.com

We have listened to your feedback and suggestions and delivered the latest developments to your BigChange experience.

Listed below are the key features which we believe will positively impact the daily use of the product.

Alert screen example

Alerts

Ever wished that you could set up Alerts around Expenses requests, flagged items and stock levels? Well, we have good news; these can now be set up in the Alerts tab.

Find out more


Job Finance Screen example

Job Finance

We know that having a tight hold on your processes is essential to controlling your finances, so we’ve introduced several new simplified features to help with that.

Find out more


Template Screen example

Templates

We want your documents to look perfect, so we’ve improved the template and expanded the options available to reflect this – including Page breaks and watermarks

Find out more

You can read the full release notes or for further advice on BigChange terminology check out the glossary.

Selecting the right field service management platform for your business and its unique requirements can feel like a daunting task. But it doesn’t have to be. Although there are plenty on the market to choose from, they’re not all created equally, and there are particular features you should be on the lookout for when making a decision. 

In this article, we’ll explore the top four platform features you should expect to find when looking for field service management software. Read on to learn more.

The 4 Field Service Management Software Features That’ll Help Your Business Thrive

1. An Integrated Mobile App for Your Engineers

Having a mobile app isn’t a luxury for today’s engineers. It’s a necessity. According to 54% of field technicians, the industry’s biggest bottleneck is not having access to pre-work site data. So, to ensure that your business is running as efficiently as possible, you must give your team everything they need to do their jobs.

With a mobile app, not only will your engineers have access to pre-work site details that removes any obstacles that could stand in their way, but they can also do the following:

  • Communicate with your back-office and share their location
  • Access the CRM (customer relationship manager)
  • Log expenses
  • Capture photos and signatures
  • Complete DVSA-compliant vehicle walkaround checks
  • Carry out risk assessments and follow workflows
  • View stock and equipment availability
  • Issue digital invoices and accept online payments
  • Fill out timesheets

…All from the palm of their hands.

By eliminating unnecessary paperwork and additional journeys to the office, you’ll liberate more time for your engineers to attend extra appointments each day.

2. An Intelligent Scheduling Assistant

Currently, scheduling and dispatching difficulties are the main challenges for field service organisations. But, job management is such a vital component of running a successful field service business that you can’t just hope for the best. After all, your schedule is responsible for ensuring the right people are in the right place at the right time.

Therefore, you should look for a field service management platform that includes an intelligent scheduling assistant. Using the assistant, your back-office team can assign and dispatch workers to jobs based on their locations, traffic information, skillsets, vehicle types, qualifications and job constraints at the click of a button. 

By ensuring that you’ve allocated the perfect person for each job, you’ll be able to improve your first-time fix rates, impress your customers and increase your profits simultaneously. Better still, your back-office team won’t be burdened with any additional work.

3. An Asset Manager

Around 43% of small businesses don’t track their assets and inventory effectively, opting instead to rely on paper-based documents, spreadsheets and legacy systems — all of which are prone to errors. 

Human error, whilst unintentional, can eat into your profits and prevent you from taking on more ambitious projects that would directly contribute to company growth. As such, having a reliable asset management system in place is essential.

With a field service management platform like BigChange, you can apply serial numbers, QR codes and barcodes to each item in your warehouse, which your engineers can scan on their mobile devices to sign them in and out of storage. By digitising your inventory and linking it to your central system, you’ll have access to accurate, real-time data that gives you the power to make better long-term business decisions instead of reactively ordering stock. 

Learn more about the importance of managing your inventory effectively here.

4. An Online Invoicing and Payments Feature

Since the outbreak of COVID-19, late invoice payments have skyrocketed in the UK by 23%. Unfortunately, unpaid invoices can stunt your cash flow, leaving you unable to meet vital operational expenses. For businesses to thrive post-pandemic, you must consider ways to streamline your invoicing and payment method for a more rapid process.

Arming your engineers with a mobile app that’s linked to your central field service management platform doesn’t just help them get the job done, it also gets you paid on time. Once they’ve completed the work, each engineer can generate an electronic invoice and send it to your customer in minutes. 

Then, the customer can pay for the service using a range of convenient online methods on the same day. Aside from involving less paperwork, online invoicing and payments significantly reduce the chance of late payments, meaning you’ll always have a healthy cash flow.

Find All the Right Field Service Management Tools in One Place

A shocking 44% of UK workers say their company’s office technology is ‘woefully outdated’ and causes them to waste just over a quarter of each day on pointless administrative tasks. So, for your organisation to stay ahead of the curve and bounce back stronger post-COVID, you must look for ways to modernise your technology and streamline workflows.

BigChange enables you to manage the entire end-to-end process — from bookings to invoicing and payment — on a single easy-to-use platform. A worthwhile investment, the right field service management platform eradicates time-consuming activities and paperwork from your team’s day. As a result, everyone will have more hours each week to do what they do best, and your bottom line will enjoy a boost.

BigChange Has All the Field Service Platform Features You Need and More

Save valuable time and stay connected to every aspect of your business with BigChange. 

Our secure, cloud-based software helps you 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.

Want to find out more?
Discover how BigChange can make your business grow stronger here and arrange a free demo today.

For many field service organisations, scheduling workers and dispatching them on time presents a significant challenge. Heavy reliance on spreadsheets, whiteboards, legacy systems and paper-based documents means that delays and confusion are common occurrences.

Unfortunately, if you’re letting appointments fall through the cracks and not delivering speedy or reliable services to your customers, you’ll soon suffer from severe reputational and financial damage.

Thankfully, by upgrading to a field service management platform, scheduling and dispatching technicians won’t have to be a headache anymore. In this article, we’ll explain how field technician scheduling software enables you to guarantee that the right person is in the right place — every time.

How Field Technician Scheduling Software Enhances Your Schedule

1. Decreases Journey Times

With the price of petrol spiking to an eight-year high in the UK, reducing travel times doesn’t just increase the number of jobs you can attend each day, but it also slashes your cost to serve. But, if you don’t have complete visibility over your workforce, it will be challenging to plan routes without first spending hours figuring it out. 

In contrast, field service management software employs an intelligent scheduling assistant, which is a tool that matches technicians with jobs based on location, skillset, vehicle type and traffic information. As such, you can optimise hundreds of jobs at the click of a button, making it simpler than ever to plan efficient routes. 

With so much spare time available as a result, your back-office team can spend less time on creating error-prone manual schedules and, instead, focus on delivering a better service to your customers and helping your business to grow.

2. Matches Workers to Jobs

For your schedule to be as effective as possible, you must keep your first-time fix rate high. But, approximately 15% of issues aren’t resolved during the first appointment because the assigned technicians don’t have the required skills. Unfortunately, when you have to keep making additional appointments, you cause delays in your schedule and reduce the number of jobs you can attend each month.

However, as we mentioned in the previous point, field service scheduling software can match workers to jobs based on several key factors, including qualifications and skill set. By matching the right person to the right project, you can enhance your first-time fix rate and thus your reputation as a reliable field service organisation.
Better still, the best field technician scheduling software comes with an integrated app that allows your technicians to view everything your back-office team can see via their mobile devices. Consequently, they’ll be alerted to any changes in their schedule in an instant, meaning your team can respond rapidly to urgent requests and re-route the most appropriately skilled workers as and when needed.

3. Assigns Assets Directly to Jobs

Although it’s paramount to send the right worker to each job, it’s equally as essential to ensure they’re equipped with the right gear. Shockingly, on average, 29% of issues aren’t fixed during the first appointment because the technician has the wrong parts or the correct ones aren’t available. 

Luckily, you can avoid problems with stock, tools and equipment altogether when you upgrade to a field service management system like BigChange. The state-of-the-art platform includes an asset management feature that creates accurate records of inventory levels in real-time, so you can see how much stock you have whenever, wherever. 

Using data from the asset manager, your back-office staff can then assign vehicles, tools and parts directly to each job ahead of time to ensure that every technician has the items they need to complete the work on the first appointment. 

Not only will your technicians appear more professional and act as excellent representatives for your organisation, but your customers will be more satisfied, and you’ll be able to take on additional appointments each month.

Field Service Scheduling Software Improves Efficiency in Just a Few Clicks

A recent OnePoll survey revealed that nearly half (44%) of UK workers believe their company’s office technology is ‘woefully outdated’, causing them to waste an astonishing 26% of each day on pointless administrative tasks.

Inefficient ways of working not only slow down your back-office staff, but they also don’t make the most of your technicians’ time, which will cause you to lose a significant amount of revenue each year. 

It’s no secret that the pandemic has had a devastating effect on many organisations over the last two years, so companies can’t afford to be complacent and rely on ‘traditional’ scheduling methods. To bounce back stronger financially and stay ahead of the competition, business leaders must harness the power of field service management software to maximise their earning potential. 

With BigChange’s field technician scheduling software, you can do the following:

  • Match workers to jobs based on traffic information, location, vehicle type, skill set and job constraints
  • Assign tools, stock and other equipment directly to jobs
  • Communicate with technicians in real-time via the mobile application
  • Book recurring jobs
  • Optimise hundreds of routes at once
  • Prioritise jobs with certain service level agreements

…all on one easy-to-use platform. Scheduling workers will never have to be a challenge again.

Scheduling Workers is Simple with BigChange

Get the right resource to the right place. Every time. 

With BigChange’s field service management platform, you can work around constraints such as time, tools required, and vehicle attributes to ensure every job is completed promptly and to a high standard.

Find out how BigChange can help your businessbook a free consultation today. Get more helpful guides and tips delivered to your inbox by subscribing to our newsletter below. You can keep up to date with BigChange on LinkedInTwitterFacebookInstagram and YouTube.

With the global field service market predicted to reach $4.45 billion by 2022, the adoption of field service management (FSM) software is increasing dramatically to keep up with growing demand. Field service management apps have the power to revolutionise the industry by enabling data-driven decision making and eliminating historically burdensome manual processes.

Therefore, businesses that continue using outdated legacy systems and manual, paper-based processes must undergo a digital transformation to stay ahead of the curve and avoid becoming obsolete.

That’s why we’ve put together a guide on everything you need to know about field service management apps. Read on to learn more about the history of FSM technology and discover how apps for service technicians can benefit your business, your team and your customers simultaneously.

A Brief History of Field Service Management Technology

Historically, most field service organisations have relied on spreadsheets, whiteboards, outdated software and paper-based documentation to manage their operations. But, while these traditional methods may have worked in past decades, they won’t cut it in today’s world where customer expectations are becoming trickier to meet, and there is less tolerance for error.

In the digital era, customers demand transparency across the entire transaction, strong communication, a personalised experience and speedy services. In fact, a staggering 76% of people now expect companies to anticipate their needs and will decide to purchase goods and services based on customer experience (CX) alone. 

Thankfully, technological advancements in recent years have made it possible to meet customers’ high standards. By automating the entire process — from appointment booking to invoicing and payment — your clients receive straightforward, convenient experiences that will make them want to use your organisation time and time again. 

However, technology can do more than simply impress your clientele. With talent shortages expected to disrupt field service companies within the next decade significantly, business leaders will be forced to innovate and think outside the box to ensure that they can still manage a high volume of work. 

For instance, repetitive administration tasks like filling out timesheets slow down technicians and steal time away from them that could be better spent attending to bookings. Field service management software automates such tasks, which frees up their time to complete more jobs without becoming burnt out. 

Read on to learn more about some of the main advantages a field service management app can provide.

How Apps for Service Technicians Can Benefit Your Organisation

There are many positives to adopting field service technology to manage your entire operation. Here are the top five benefits your business could enjoy by providing your technicians with a field service mobile application:

1. Live Tracking and Real-Time Updates

Did you know that 89% of today’s customers prefer to use an ‘Uber-like’ service to track field service technicians and receive updates on arrival times? But, if your team has to rely on phone calls and texts from your technicians, providing such updates is impossible. 

In contrast, when you use modern field service management technology, you can use GPS vehicle tracking to provide your customers with real-time updates on the whereabouts of their technicians. 

The system will automatically send text and email alerts to your clients, including an estimated arrival time and a link that allows them to track the technicians live. So, never again will your customers be left disgruntled from waiting at home all day after being provided with a vague time slot.

Plus, apps for service technicians have the added advantage of enabling rapid communication to the back office via instant messaging, eliminating the need for time-consuming phone calls. As such, your administration team has an accurate picture of what’s happening in the field and can make better-informed decisions when dispatching workers to jobs.

2. Happier Customers

80% of field service technicians believe that access to a mobile application is critical to increasing their efficiency and effectiveness at helping customers. Suppose you send your technicians into a job without providing them with essential information; it is much more challenging for them to complete the work correctly the first time.

Unfortunately, modern customers lead busy lives and won’t appreciate needing to make multiple appointments for a simple job. At worst, you could end up losing business as clients opt to use your competitors who were early adopters of FSM technology and therefore better equipped to deliver satisfactory service. 

Stay ahead of the curve by seamlessly connecting your technicians and back-office team and enabling them to communicate in real-time. For example, your admin staff can allocate stock, equipment and assets to each job, meaning your technicians will always arrive at an appointment with the correct gear to complete the job the first time.
Then, once the job is complete, your technicians can fill out all the necessary paperwork from their mobile devices and provide your customers with an electronic invoice straight away. Clients will appreciate the rapidity of the service, alongside the straightforward payment methods, and your back-office team will have a complete digital record of all the documents for future reference.

3. More Engaged Team Members

Economists at the University of Warwick have found that being happy at work makes people around 12% more productive. Consequently, to get the most out of your team, you must consider ways to ensure they feel valued and have all the tools they need to do their jobs effectively.

If you’re expecting your technicians to turn up at each booking with limited knowledge of the job and then fill out several pages of paperwork each day before manually turning it into the office, you’ll likely find that your team is disengaged. Workers who aren’t engaged may struggle to deliver high-quality work to customers and suffer from more accidents on the job.

However, apps for service technicians are designed with your team’s needs in mind. When you use FSM technology to manage your operations, it records every interaction you have with your customers. Subsequently, your technicians will be able to see a detailed report of the job requirements, so they have all the information they need to carry out the work effectively.

Additionally, technicians can complete all paperwork directly on their mobile devices and immediately send it to your back-office team. They can fill out their timesheets and send customers invoices as they go. FSM technology eliminates the need for technicians to hand paperwork into the office at the end of the day, and in turn you both reduce the margin for error and free up more time for your technicians to attend extra bookings. 

Paperless processes don’t just benefit your field-based team, however. You will also benefit from increased productivity behind the scenes. When you go paperless, you eradicate the time-consuming administrative tasks that have long plagued office staff. Your back-office team will appreciate the simplicity of seeing customers’ files on one easy-to-use platform, leaving them with more hours to focus on tasks that can help grow and develop the business.

4. Rapid Troubleshooting and Improved Health and Safety

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has revealed that UK businesses lose approximately 38.8 million working days each year due to work-related illness and injuries. Aside from potentially damaging your reputation and causing harm to your workers, health and safety blunders can cause severe delays and impact your entire organisation.

The good news is, with the right technology, you can minimise the risk of illness or injury. For example, field service management apps enable you to set up mandatory workflows and risk assessments that technicians must complete before they can begin the work or fill out their timesheets. 

If your technicians come across a hazard that could jeopardise the project, they can immediately alert your back-office team. They’ll then work with the technician to safely mitigate the issue and get the work back on track. 

By making health and safety a priority, you’ll lose fewer days to illness and injury, and your team will be able to carry out their work without worrying about their surroundings.

5. Maximised Schedule and Ability to Respond to Emergency Call-Outs

Half of all fleet managers believe that the ability to quickly reroute field technicians for emergency jobs is the most crucial factor to their success. Keeping everyone updated on schedule changes comes in close behind at 48%.

But, if you don’t have an effective communication channel between your back-office team and field-based workers, it can be tricky to contact the necessary individuals and inform them of changes to the schedule. Not to mention that information can be misinterpreted or cause confusion that leads to missed or delayed appointments.

Let’s imagine a customer has just called with an emergency job, but your office is using a spreadsheet for job scheduling. Your team would need to manually work out who is local to the customer and call each technician to see if they can cover the work. In addition to being a lengthy process, it could have a knock-on effect on your other bookings and cause customers to become frustrated.

Instead, when your technicians have access to a field service management app like BigChange, they can see any schedule changes in an instant. Your back-office staff will be able to locate the most relevant technician local to the emergency job and re-allocate other bookings to those with availability. Everyone can continue with business-as-usual, and no appointments will be impacted due to the schedule change.

Field Service Management Apps are a Worthwhile Investment

According to data from Verizon Connect, meeting customer expectations is the biggest challenge for 56% of field service companies today. For 38%, scheduling and dispatching inefficiencies present the most significant obstacle. Clearly, traditional methods of working aren’t working anymore. 

Reliance on legacy systems, spreadsheets and paper-based processes cannot keep up with the rapid pace of the modern workday. Nor can they provide the level of service required to delight your clients and keep them returning to your business in the future. 

In order to survive and thrive in a competitive post-pandemic landscape, field service organisations will need to ensure their technicians have access to the latest and most accurate information. Fortunately, field service management apps provide workers with everything they need at their fingertips. 

From detailed information on the customer’s booking, to pre-assigned stock and digitised paperwork, your technicians will be able to spend less time on time-consuming tasks and, instead, focus on doing what they do best.

Arm Your Technicians with the Right Tools. Transform Ways of Working with BigChange’s Field Service Management App.

Allow your technicians to see all job information in one place.

With the BigChange Mobile Application, your field-based workforce will have everything they need to deliver excellent service. Technicians can share real-time updates on location and job statuses, guarantee on-time customer payments with electronic invoices, and enhance communication between technicians and your back-office.

All from the palm of their hands.

Want to find out more?
Discover how BigChange can make your business grow stronger, arrange a free demo today.

Field service organisations that use manual processes are likely operating at a disadvantage because they lack visibility over their operation. This lack of visibility, and continued use of legacy systems and paper-based records, has led to a largely reactive approach when it comes to fleet management, health and safety, and business efficiency. 

Fixing damage to vehicles or doing emergency maintenance in a reactive fashion can eat into profits. It can cost up to five times more to fix something reactively than it does to carry out proactive maintenance regularly. Using outdated methods of fleet management also compromises the safety of your field-based workers as their journeys and risk assessments go unmonitored, meaning that issues could arise when they’re on the road. Fortunately, technology can improve vehicle safety and reduce costly downtime for your business.

Some organisations in field management have shifted to using digital tools to manage their fleet, technicians, customers, and employees. In fact, companies that use field service management software enjoy a 90% time saving on average. However, there is still significant room for modernisation in this industry, and many businesses still rely on guesswork or inefficient processes to get the job done.

So how can technology and software help you manage your fleet more effectively? This article will be a guide on what benefits your company could enjoy if you adopt field-service management (FSM) software.

Manage Vehicle Maintenance Effectively

Businesses that take a preventative approach to vehicle maintenance can save between 12-18% on the costs, compared to firms that only fix something when absolutely necessary — a reactive approach.

To help you take preventative measures when examining your fleet, field management software includes features such as DVSA compliant walkaround checks. The feature allows your drivers to do a daily walk around the vehicle and log any defects through a mobile app. The driver or technician can then check the functionality of the vehicle and record any areas of concern, and they can add their notes to the log for that specific vehicle every day. 

Over time, the system builds a detailed report from the daily checks so that there is always something to refer to if you need to identify the root cause of a vehicle issue. In addition, daily monitoring will allow you to note any changes that could become issues later down the line and pay a lower price to have a vehicle repaired beforehand.

Furthermore, you’ll be able to create Event Alerts for each vehicle. Each ‘event’ is stored on each vehicle’s record so that your back-office staff are notified when your Road Tax is expiring or when the vehicle service or MOT is due to be booked, for example. These notifications help your business stay compliant and avoid unintentional breaches of vehicle laws.

Monitor Mileage with GPS Vehicle Tracking System

Many field service management softwares have a GPS tracking system in place for all the vehicles in their fleet. GPS allows your business to track how far vehicles are travelling before they need routine maintenance without having to do guesswork. BigChange’s vehicle tracking is integrated into the software so that your back-office team can monitor any vehicle when necessary. 

The software records the mileage completed by each vehicle for years, so you can always refer back to previous journeys without having to search through mountains of paperwork or receipts. 

You can also link transactions to the actual mileage completed by each vehicle. By lining fuel card transactions to the mileage data, you’ll be able to calculate highly accurate miles to the gallon figures, as well as identify any discrepancies in your costs. The GPS and fuel features will help you save money and deploy more efficient decisions when managing your fleet of vehicles.

Storing Documents Securely

In 2020, around half (48%) of field service businesses were still using manual administration processes, paper-based methods and legacy systems to manage their field service fleet. Therefore, now is an opportune time to upgrade your systems and stand out from the competition.

You can gain an edge over your competitors by adopting FSM technology for managing your fleet because you can keep all important documentation in one place. You will be able to access any document at any time for any vehicle: MOT certificates, insurance details, leases, invoices for maintenance, or even drivers licences for your employees, all at the touch of a button.

The cloud-based software will store the documents safely so that your back-office staff can access them easily. As a result, time-wasting tasks such as looking through digital folders or sifting through paper records are eliminated.  Your customers and staff will also be able to rest assured that their personal information or important documents are safe. Unlike spreadsheets and legacy systems, which are notoriously challenging to manage compliantly, CRM systems such as the one that is integrated into BigChange’s platform, allow you to carry out GDPR-compliant management of individuals’ details. 

Keeping on Top of Vehicle Safety

If you’re the Head of Operations at your company, it’s unlikely you’ll know everything about every vehicle in your fleet. At most organisations, the state of a field service technician’s vehicle is logged in a book or spreadsheet somewhere only accessible to the back-office staff. 

Using BigChange’s mobile workforce software and GPS vehicle tracking system, you’ll have access to your entire fleet’s history and real-time location at the tap of your finger. Not only does the software give you a comprehensive overview of each vehicle, its age, mileage, and condition, everyone who needs to will be able to access every DVSA compliant walkaround to ensure your vehicles are safe for driving. 

So, aside from reducing administrative headaches, you and your technicians can rest assured that every vehicle is roadworthy and safe to drive.

Another essential part of managing fleet safety is keeping an eye out for how field service technicians are driving from job to job. 

BigChange’s commitment to improving safety on UK roads is why we’ve developed an advanced driver behaviour analysis feature for our platform. Using the GPS vehicle tracking system, you can generate an analysis for each technician that includes their idling, speeding, cornering, braking, and harsh accelerations. Then, to give managers an at-a-glance view of each field service technician’s driving behaviour, the platform assigns a driving score for each driver. 

Combine this driver behaviour analysis with our advanced time-stamping records for each driver, and you’ll be able to understand how your field technicians are driving, and more importantly if they’re taking the necessary breaks to ensure they’ll be alert on the road. 

Optimising Routes

Time is money. But, unfortunately, with petrol prices escalating to an eight-year high in the UK, many field service businesses are losing large sums of money by not optimising their technicians’ routes between jobs. 

However, if you’re relying on spreadsheets or outdated in-house systems to manage everyone’s routes, how can you guarantee that you’re optimising them and able to account for the unpredictable nature of traffic on the roads?

That’s where workforce tracking software comes in.

FSM platforms such as BigChange give you complete visibility over your technicians’ whereabouts so you can allocate nearby jobs to them. The intelligent scheduling assistant uses several factors to identify which technicians are the most suitable to travel to a job to allocate jobs efficiently. You’ll be able to look at:

  • Real-time resource location
  • Live-traffic information
  • Job constraints (such as skills or qualifications)
  • Type of vehicle
  • Inventory of parts required
  • Customer history and requirements

Combining the above information means you can make informed decisions about which technician to allocate to a job — even if they are not geographically closest to it.

As a result, your schedule will be optimised, with as little wasted time as possible, which means not only will your technicians be able to attend more appointments per day, but you’ll also save money per journey, which all contributes to boosting your profits. 

Your technicians’ journeys will also be shorter and managed more efficiently, which puts them at less risk of any road accidents. 

Tracking Tools and Equipment

Your fleet doesn’t just include your vehicles. It also includes your equipment, tools, parts, and other assets like trailers or machinery. Did you know, a staggering 43% of small businesses fail to track their assets and inventory effectively? Because so many field service organisations still rely on old-fashioned, manual tracking methods, and some have no official processes in place, they’re vulnerable to a range of potentially costly issues.

With state-of-the-art asset management software in place, unreliable data becomes a problem of the past. Modern systems record data in real-time, allowing you to make more informed business decisions based on fact rather than needing to count on potentially incorrect paper records.

It makes logical sense to use manual check-out and check-in sheets to keep track of your equipment. However, traditional paper asset management methods don’t always work in practice and are inherently error-prone. In fact, human error is the leading problem for 46% of businesses when it comes to accurately reporting on assets.

Whether your technicians forget to sign the sheets, inadvertently take too many items, store spares in their van for another project, or their writing is simply illegible, you’ll come to realise that the numbers aren’t adding up. 

But whilst those errors may have gone unnoticed, they could have been costing the business a fortune. For example, if your equipment was to go missing, then there’s no exact way of tracking what happened to it. Not only will lost equipment likely stall other projects, but replacements can be expensive. 

Instead, you can create a detailed register of equipment and other vital assets when you digitise your asset management methods. On BigChange, you’ll be able to maintain a record of fitted parts, tools or other specialist equipment, and you can track each item’s movements through serial numbers, barcodes or QR codes on the stock. 

Your technicians can then check inventory in and out directly from their mobile devices, and you will have better visibility over your valuable assets. Digitising your inventory management process will not only save you money replacing expensive equipment but will bring up your first-time fix rates as technicians will have access to the assets they need to complete the job on their first visit.

Improving Your Entire Operation with Fleet Management Technology

However you are currently managing your fleet — whether it be a spreadsheet, paper records, or a system that has been used for a long time — it’s no match to the efficiency of the latest technological advances in the field service industry.

Using a platform like BigChange can revolutionise your operation, and the investment will pay for itself in the savings and added profit you’d make from its use. 

Not only will your bottom-line benefit from adopting a field service management system, but as we’ve seen, your drivers’ safety will always be a priority; your essential documentation will be secure and accessible; your back-office staff will save time on mundane admin and be able to return to tasks that can grow the business, and ultimately your fleet will be in better condition because of the preventive approach you’ll be using to maintain your vehicles.

Managing Your Fleet Effortlessly with BigChange

Manage your entire operation on a single platform. 

BigChange gives you complete control of your admin, from quotes to invoicing and beyond. Also, with our mobile app (available on iOS and Android), you can seamlessly connect your office, field technicians and customers and boost productivity as a result. 

Want to find out more?

Discover how BigChange can make your business grow stronger, arrange a free demo today.

Did you know it takes the average small-to-mid-sized company an astonishing 25 days to process a single invoice manually? Unfortunately, the longer it takes to issue a customer with an invoice, the higher the chance you won’t be paid on time.

When clients consistently pay late, your cash flow suffers, preventing you from affording other operational expenses. In a post-pandemic world, companies need to shore up their supply chains and ensure they pay suppliers promptly, or else they risk severe financial and reputational damage.

Fortunately, modern invoicing and payment software solutions have made it easier than ever to keep your finances on track. Read on to discover how implementing innovative technology can help you get paid on time, every time.

How Invoicing and Payment Software Ensure Invoices Are Paid on Time

1. Digitising All Documents

There are many positives to adopting field service technology to manage your entire operation. Here are the top five benefits your business could enjoy by providing your technicians with a field service mobile application:

2. Live Tracking and Real-Time Updates

According to data from BlueSnap, businesses that use traditional invoicing and payment methods typically spend around 11 hours managing a single invoice across a range of five different systems.

Aside from being time-consuming, manual processes can be a morale-killer for your accounts receivable (AR) team. They not only have to complete arduous, repetitive tasks each day but also inevitably spend hours on the phone chasing up late payments. Sadly, when team morale begins to take a nosedive, so does productivity. 

Fortunately, when you use cutting-edge invoicing and payment software can liberate your team from the monotony of dealing with endless paperwork.

For example, once your technicians have completed their jobs, they can simply fill out all essential paperwork instantly. Then, they can send electronic invoices to your customers directly from their mobile devices.

The most advanced platforms, such as BigChange, also include an online payment feature to make it even more straightforward for your customers to pay for goods and services. By making it possible for your clients to pay immediately, you won’t have the headache of chasing overdue invoices. Plus, when you eliminate unnecessary administration associated with invoicing, you free up more time for your AR team to focus on business-critical activities.

3. Reducing the Margin for Error

Around 88% of all spreadsheets contain at least one mistake. When you rely on people to manually input data over an extended period, errors are unavoidable.

However, minor inaccuracies cost your business dearly. If your AR team relies on spreadsheets and legacy systems to create invoices, chances are some details won’t be correct. As a result, the likelihood of a customer calling up to contest a payment undoubtedly increases. 

When a customer has to take time out of their day to iron out mistakes, their impression of your company becomes less favourable, and they will be unwilling recommend you to others. At worst, they may decide to not use your services again in the future.

Additionally, incorrect invoices create excess work for your employees. AR teams have to raise a brand new invoice and start the entire process over again. Delays in invoice processing cause businesses to miss deadlines, hurting their professional reputation and destroying their cash flow.

That’s where invoicing and payment software comes in. 

Pulling information directly from the integrated CRM (Customer Relationship Management) system, your technicians can instantly create an invoice with all the clients’ correct details. They can then send the digital invoices to your customers for same-day approval. 

By providing people with their invoices more rapidly, you can ensure that they are satisfied with the details or, if not, mitigate any potential issues before they become problematic. As a result, you’ll find that your invoices are paid on time and you can keep your operations running smoothly.

4. Providing Modern Payment Methods

The UK is currently the largest digital payments market in Europe by valuation, currently worth a total of  £157.7 billion. Today’s customers want smarter, simpler ways to pay and, therefore, field service businesses will need to get ahead of the curve to avoid becoming obsolete.

When it comes to invoicing using traditional methods, the entire process can take weeks. Let’s imagine your technician has just completed a job. The technician informs your AR team, who then waits for the next payment cycle before creating, printing out, and mailing the invoice. By the time the payment cycle has come around, it’s been several days since the engineer completed the job.

A few days later, your customer receives the invoice and puts it on their finance team’s desk. Their finance team is slowly making their way through the pile of existing invoices, and it takes another day before they get to yours.

Your customer’s finance team checks the invoice to ensure it’s correct and writes out a cheque. They then post it to you in the mail, and it arrives later in the week. Worse, the finance team could have inadvertently misplaced or thrown out the paper invoice, delaying the process even further.

Not a very efficient system, to say the least. 

In contrast, businesses that use modern invoicing and payment software get paid the moment technicians complete their jobs. BigChange Pay enables your clients to pay from their mobile devices using the modern methods they’re accustomed to, such as Apple Pay.

In addition to swift, effortless payments, you can also benefit from the extra layer of security that online payments provide. Unlike cheques, which leave you vulnerable to fraud, payment software can detect criminal activity. As such, you can rest assured that all payments are legitimate and that you won’t have any unpleasant surprises further down the road. 

Digital Invoices and Payments are the Future

With invoicing and payment software, you can wave goodbye to the inefficiencies that traditional methods create. When you arm your team with state-of-the-art technology, you can create a more productive work environment, reduce the margin for human error and guarantee that invoices are paid on time.

Guarantee Your Invoices are Paid on Time with BigChange

Get paid on time. Every time.

With BigChange, you can rapidly create financial documents based on pre-saved line items or automatically calculated job costs. Plus, you can generate and share invoices, quotes, estimates, purchase orders and credit notes in seconds.

Make payments simple for your customers with BigChange Pay by enabling them to send money straight from their mobile devices. 

Want to find out more?
Discover how BigChange can make your business grow stronger, arrange a free demo today.

The COVID-19 pandemic has had a huge impact on the number of new businesses being set up countrywide. In fact, UK business incorporations increased by 30% in December 2020 compared with the same period in 2019.

Therefore, if you’re setting out on a new window cleaning business venture, you must learn how to stand out from the competition. Fortunately, with the right tools and know-how, creating and growing a company can be extremely rewarding.

In this article, we’ll explain how to run a window cleaning business, breaking down the steps you will need to take to set up your company and begin attracting clients. Plus, we’ll explain how state-of-the-art field service management technology will help you manage your new business.

Setting up Your Business and Finding Window Cleaning Jobs

1. Write a Business Plan

Although the start-up costs for a window cleaning business are relatively low, you will need to consider your organisation’s future. For example, if you plan to take on extra staff, you’ll need to cover training and additional insurance costs. Or, if you want to spread the word about your new company, you’ll need to pay for marketing materials.

Therefore, it’s worth taking some time to put together a business plan. Many small businesses forgo creating a plan, but it helps you keep your operations on track and gives you the chance to forecast additional costs further down the line. 

If you hope to grow your business and purchase high-end equipment to take on larger clients, you may wish to consider obtaining financial backing to get started. There are many routes you can take to gather funds, so do some research on the best method for your organisation.

2. Take Out an Insurance Policy

To start taking on window cleaning jobs, you’ll need to have the right insurance policies in place. You should consider taking out the following:

  • Public Liability Insurance: Covers your legal fees and compensation costs if your business injures a member of the public or one of your clients, or damages their property.
  • Personal Accident Insurance: Covers and compensates you in the instance of accidental injury or death.
  • Employers’ Liability Insurance: Covers and compensates your employees in the case they are injured at work.
  • Business Equipment Insurance: Covers and compensates you in the instance of damage, loss or theft of window cleaning equipment.

If you plan to hire a team, the best way to keep your insurance premiums low is by providing comprehensive health and safety training. By investing in field service management software, you can create mandatory risk assessments and workflows that your technicians must complete before they can start the job. As a result, you can rest assured that the chance of a workplace injury is kept low.

3. Register Your Business

Once you’ve arranged your new business’ legal and financial aspects, you will need to register it with HMRC. There are three routes you can take, depending on your company type:

Sole Trader

If you’re a sole trader, you run the business alone and are self-employed. You can keep all your companys’ profits once you’ve paid the tax, but you’re also personally responsible for any losses you make.

Limited Company

When you form a limited company, your personal and business finances are separate. However, there are more management and reporting responsibilities. Although you can set up a company by yourself, it may be helpful to get help from an accountant. 

Partnership

A partnership is usually the best route for two or more people who want to run a business together as you share financial responsibilities. You can learn more about partnerships here. 

For further support on setting up a business, visit the GOV.UK website.

4. Market Your Business and Attract Clients

Now you’ve set up your new company, you’ll need to spread the word to get your first window cleaning job. Today, around 71% of small businesses create a website to market their organisation, making it a popular choice.

Luckily, you don’t have to be a tech whizz or know anything about coding to make a professional-looking website. There are plenty of templates you can use to share important details about your business, such as:

  • Contact details
  • Your services
  • Locations you cover
  • Social media links
  • Customer testimonials (once you start receiving feedback)

Although customer attraction is crucial, retention will ensure that your business has a consistent stream of income. As such, you should ensure that you’re providing a great customer experience at all stages of the buyer journey. 

With a field service management platform like BigChange, your customers can easily make and change bookings via our online portal, track the location of their technician in real-time and receive automated email updates from your business. By keeping your clients in the loop, they will feel valued and prefer to use your company’s services over your competitors’.

Field Service Management Software Provides the Perfect Window of Opportunity to Grow Your Business

It’s no secret that COVID-19 has had a devastating impact on many businesses in the field service industry. However, one key takeaway from the crisis is that technology can help organisations overcome a range of challenges. According to research from Cisco, companies that adopted technology quickly during the pandemic reported a higher rate of recovering from COVID-related economic issues. 

Consequently, in today’s turbulent market, you must consider ways to maintain business-as-usual without needing to go through costly recruitment processes that could end in frustration for both you and your new hire. 

With the right job management platform in place, you can be confident that your team will have everything they need to deliver outstanding service and grow your business without becoming overworked. 

Deal with a High Volume of Work Effortlessly with BigChange

Manage your entire operation on a single platform. 

BigChange gives you complete control of your admin, from quotes to invoicing and beyond. Also, with our mobile app (available on iOS and Android), you can seamlessly connect your office, field technicians and customers and boost productivity as a result. 

Want to find out more?
Discover how BigChange can make your business grow stronger here and arrange a free demo today.

UK trades firms are investing more in technology to stay on top of costs and manage the increase in demand they predict going into 2022, according to a study by field service software provider BigChange and independent research consultancy Opinium

  • Almost all UK trades businesses expected demand for their services to grow into 2022
  • Increasing cost of materials, fuel and people to impact over two-thirds of firms negatively
  • Technology spending growth is expected to outpace rise in employees and other investments

The study shows that 85 per cent of firms expect to be busier over the next 12 months, and nearly one-in-five (17 per cent) anticipate that workloads will at least double.

Expectations of growth are highest among building maintenance, facilities management, cleaning and waste management firms. At least 88 per cent of business leaders surveyed from these sectors said they expected workloads to increase going into 2022.

But growing demand doesn’t mean plain sailing in the year ahead. 73 per cent of respondents said increasing costs for materials and fuel would reduce their profitability in 2022, and 69 per cent said that the higher price of labour would negatively impact their finances.

Almost all (94 per cent) of the firms surveyed expected to increase technology spending in 2022 to help manage extra demand and rising costs. A quarter (23 per cent) say they will spend at least 50 per cent more on digital tools than in the last 12 months.

The median – or middle of the pack – firm expects to increase technology spending by 11 per cent in the next 12 months. Median firms plan to employ seven per cent more people and increase broader investment in their business by 10 per cent over the same period.

82 per cent of leaders told researchers that good practice in their sector now involved using digital systems to manage their businesses. More than half (54 per cent) said that operations should be automated and optimised within a single system.

Richard Warley, BigChange CEO, comments:

“Demand for trades and other services delivered by field-based employees is booming. This is clearly good news for the sector.”

“However, it also brings significant challenges. With costs spiralling, firms can’t afford to take on and train a proportionate number of new employees. 

“Our study suggests that almost all trades businesses are now looking to use technologies proven to make the best use of resources and time. Firms are working smarter as well as harder.”

For more details on BigChange’s study and how trades businesses are faring in the current climate, visit https://www.bigchange.com/field-service-sector-report/

Trade turn to digital tools

When it comes to running a successful field service business, every minute counts.

However, you can only ensure that you’re making the most of your workers’ time and delivering an excellent service when you have access to real-time data. Without live updates, you’ll be relying on second-hand information to make decisions, possibly when it’s already too late.

That’s where field service management software come in.

Thanks to technological advancements in recent years, you can now gain complete visibility over your operations at the touch of a button. Never again will you have to rely on guesswork or slow, inefficient processes to get the job done. In fact, companies that use field service management software enjoy a 90% time saving on average.

In this article, we’ll explore the main reasons why real-time data is critical for your company and how you can access live updates on BigChange’s complete Job Management Platform.

Why is Real-Time Data Important?

Big data is undoubtedly contributing to the growth of almost every industry today. Nonetheless, if you don’t currently have methods of harvesting this information or aren’t using it to your advantage, you could fall behind the competition. 

Therefore, it’s worth considering how you can capture and use real-time data to grow your business. Here are just some of the top benefits your business could enjoy:

1. Boosts First-Time Fix Rates

The average first-time fix rate for field service businesses is between 75-79%. Although the percentage may seem high, in reality, it means that at least a quarter of all service calls involve a follow-up appointment. 

Not only are additional engineer visits inconvenient for the customer, but they also eat into your profits and disrupt your schedule. 

Instead, when you have access to real-time data, the risk of not fixing an issue the first time plummets. For example, your back-office staff can assign equipment and assets directly to a particular job and dispatch an engineer with the right skill set to carry out the work.

Once they arrive at a job, your technicians can access all the data they need to resolve the issue as promptly and accurately as possible. As a result, your technicians will be able to attend more appointments per day, your customers will be content, and your bottom line will experience a boost.

2. Increases Customer Satisfaction

Currently, 32% of field service organisations are failing to attain at least 80% customer satisfaction. Poor customer satisfaction rates can destroy your reputation and make it harder to win new business in the future.

When you don’t have complete visibility over your operations, meeting customer expectations becomes much more challenging. In addition to causing poor first-time fix rates, lack of real-time data prevents your customers from tracking their appointment statuses, causing a lot of inconveniences.

In comparison, when you use a modern workforce management system, you can use the live data it collects to:

  • Assign the correct equipment to jobs
  • Dispatch an appropriately skilled technician to jobs
  • Provide customers with live job status updates to keep them in the loop
  • Equip your technicians with all the information they need to carry out work effectively

Aside from being satisfied with the speed and quality of work, your customers will also appreciate your personalised approach to communication. Consequently, they may use your business again or recommend your services to friends, family, and professional networks.

3. Cuts Down Travel Costs

Time is money. Unfortunately, with petrol prices escalating to an eight-year high in the UK, many field service businesses are losing large sums of money by not optimising their technicians’ routes between jobs. 

When you don’t have visibility over your field engineers, it becomes incredibly complicated to ensure that you’re allocating the best resources for jobs and keeping travel times to a minimum.

But, with state-of-the-art scheduling technology in place, you can revolutionise the way you plan jobs. The software uses real-time data to account for location, traffic information, job constraints and vehicle type so you can rest assured that you’re allocating the right people and equipment to the right place.

Subsequently, you’ll save money on petrol and improve productivity by freeing up your technicians’ time to attend to more projects per day. 

4. Enables You to Create Accurate Budgets

According to a BlueSnap report, 37% of organisations cannot accurately forecast their cash flow because they use outdated processes and legacy systems to manage their finances. If a lack of financial visibility is plaguing your business, you may be spending more than you should be.

In contrast, when you adopt a workforce management software, it collects real-time data, which you can use to have more clarity and control over:

  • Stock and equipment quantities
  • Outstanding customer invoices
  • Cost centres

With the exact quantitative data to hand, you can make better-informed budgeting decisions for the future. For example, you are less likely to inadvertently over-order stock because you’ll have the exact number recorded in the system. Instead, you can use your profits to continue growing your business.

Access Real-Time Data and Maximise Efficiency with BigChange

See your entire operation at a glance on BigChange’s complete Job Management Platform.

Our cloud-based job management software provides you with live data so you can:

  • Schedule and dispatch workers based on location, skill set and availability
  • Assign assets and equipment directly to jobs to increase first-time fix rates 
  • Respond to urgent requests and mitigate potential issues
  • Make informed, accurate decisions about your business

Want to find out more?

Discover how BigChange field service management software can make your business grow stronger here and arrange a free demo today.

Workforce scheduling and optimisation are critical elements of any field service company. They ensure that your operations are running smoothly and that you are making the most of your engineers’ time. 

But, organisations that fail to modernise and adopt technology to maximise their job scheduling efficiency now risk becoming obsolete. With a staggering 89% of customers preferring an ‘Uber-like’ service for tracking technician arrivals, traditional methods of managing your schedule aren’t going to delight your customers and keep them coming back in the future.

Thankfully, the latest job scheduling software eliminates the headaches associated with creating an efficient workflow and automates the entire process, impressing customers and freeing up your back-office staff’s time simultaneously. 

Read on to learn more about what field service job scheduling software is, why it’s important and how it can benefit your business.

What is Job Scheduling Software and Why is it Important?

Workforce scheduling involves planning each field workers’ day to manage the workload within your business. However, 25% of companies currently use spreadsheets and manual data entry to create their schedules. The remainder relies on whiteboards and other inefficient, error-prone processes.

Unfortunately, traditional methods of scheduling jobs aren’t going to cut it in the modern world. Customers are used to seamless, convenient experiences that spreadsheets, paper-based documents and legacy systems cannot provide.

Picture this: a customer calls your back-office team, asking to make an appointment for Wednesday at 3pm. Your employee makes a note of it and assigns Sasha to the booking in the spreadsheet.

But they don’t notice that they’ve made a typo and put 4pm instead. In the meantime, another team member has received a call for Wednesday at 3pm, and they assign Sasha to it, not realising that she is supposed to be in another location at that time.

On Wednesday, Sasha receives her schedule and begins the day. At 3pm, she attends the booking on her sheet. However, about ten minutes into the job, she receives a call from a back-office team member who wants to know why she didn’t show up to an appointment.

After some back and forth, your team finally concludes that there’s been a scheduling error. Only problem is, your employees now face the dilemma of either letting one customer down and rescheduling or trying to find an engineer who can visit the customer at the last minute.

Not only is a poorly managed schedule inconvenient for staff and customers alike, but it can be costly and destroy your reputation in the process.

That’s where field service job scheduling software comes in.

Using intelligent scheduling technology, you can ensure that you always have the right resources in the right places. 

Customers can book and reschedule their appointments directly via an easy-to-use online portal. Your back-office team can then use the customers’ booking information to schedule and dispatch workers without needing to worry about the potential for human error. 

The intelligent scheduling software is designed to account for traffic information, worker location and skill set, availability, and job constraints, so you know that you’re assigning the best person for the job.

The 5 Top Benefits of Using Field Service Job Scheduling Software

Here are the top five benefits your business could experience by adopting field service job scheduling software:

1. Optimised Routes Between Customer Bookings

A large portion of a field engineer’s working day is spent on the roads, travelling between customers. In addition to long journeys being extremely pricey, especially since petrol prices in the UK have skyrocketed to an eight-year high, they also take up a large chunk of time that could be better spent attending to customers.

Using traditional job scheduling methods doesn’t provide you with the complete visibility you need to plan routes in the most efficient way. If you can’t see who’s working for you on what day and where, how can you ensure that you’re keeping time on the road to a minimum?

Instead, with state-of-the-art job scheduling software, you can use real-time data to assign appropriately skilled workers to jobs, accounting for location, traffic information, job constraints and vehicle type.

The inbuilt intelligent scheduling assistant enables you to optimise the travel distance of hundreds of jobs at the touch of a button, slashing both time and cost of each journey. In fact, you’ll be able to see the ‘cost to serve’ each customer directly on the system so you can factor it into your future budgets.

By optimising each technician’s journey, they’ll have more time than ever before to attend additional bookings and focus on doing what they do best.

2. Better First-Time Fix Rates

Did you know that companies with a first-time fix rate of over 70% enjoy an 86% customer retention rate? Conversely, those with a rate under 70% only manage to retain 76% of customers, which is a 10% reduction. Consequently, completing jobs the first time is paramount to run a successful business.

Still, businesses continue to risk banking on spreadsheets, paper-based documents and legacy systems to manage their scheduling effectively. Although traditional methods may have worked in the past, customer expectations are constantly becoming more demanding, and people don’t want the inconvenience of needing to book more than one appointment. 

Luckily, thanks to modern job scheduling technology, you can dramatically improve your first-time fix rates and impress customers simultaneously.

Your back-office team can use real-time data to assign skilled resources, equipment and assets such as vehicles directly to a booking. By ensuring that your technicians have the right skills for the job and are armed with the correct gear each time, they are far more likely to complete the project on the same day.

When you use technology to streamline your processes, you can rest assured that everyone on the team can do their jobs effectively and satisfy your customers. Ousting repeat visits will also free up more time for your technicians to complete more visits each day and boost your bottom line further.

3. A More Motivated Team

It’s no secret that manual administration processes can be time-consuming. In reality, workers say they spend around two hours every day on admin instead of focusing on more business-critical tasks.

Aside from taking up your team’s precious time, arduous, repetitive work can obliterate employee morale and cause productivity to hit an all-time low. The worst part is that when your staff aren’t engaged in their work, the margin for error increases exponentially. 

As such, you may find that there are more missed appointments, delays and scheduling clashes, which bruises your company’s reputation and costs you in the long run. 

In contrast, field service job scheduling software is designed to streamline processes and eliminate the repetitive nature of administration work. Your back-office team can schedule and dispatch workers based on their location, availability, vehicle type, and skill set at the touch of a button.

For maximum productivity, you could use a platform that incorporates a CRM. For example, BigChange’s complete Job Management Platform enables your team to pull customer information directly into bookings, reducing the room for mistakes. Plus, the system updates live so your team can’t inadvertently book your technicians to be in multiple places at once.

With your team needing to spend less time on monotonous tasks, you’ll find that their motivation levels will rise, and they’ll have more opportunities to work on jobs that directly contribute to business growth.

4. Ability to Mitigate and Respond to Emergencies

Over half (56%) of field service professionals say that their customers are demanding faster response times. Therefore, you must have the means to act rapidly, regardless of the situation.

Let’s imagine that a customer’s pipe bursts in the only bathroom in their house. They call your back-office team to see if you can send a plumber over as soon as possible. Sadly, your employee cannot get hold of an engineer because they’re all busy and aren’t answering their phones. 

As a result, the employee can’t schedule someone to get there soon, and they have to decline the job, meaning the customer goes to your competitor instead. 

Fortunately, frustrating scenarios like the above are entirely avoidable with field service job scheduling software such as BigChange. Communication with technicians is straightforward as they all have access to an app that provides them with all the information they need to know in real-time — no more missed calls or text messages.

Additionally, your back-office team can use GPS tracking and live data to see which engineers are nearby. As a result, they can rapidly allocate resources to emergency call-outs and ensure that no bookings are left unattended.

Because your company can respond so speedily to emergency requests, you can mitigate a host of expensive issues and impress your customers, meaning they’ll be more inclined to use your services again in the future.

5. Guarantees Compliance

In addition to keeping your customers happy, a large part of running a field service business involves taking measures to protect your workers’ health and safety and ensuring that you follow industry regulations.

When you don’t have complete visibility over your workers, guaranteeing that you’re running your operations compliantly becomes a near-impossible task. Nevertheless, if your business is found to be in breach of specific regulations, you could be hit with severe financial and reputational damage. 

The good news is, with a suitable job scheduling software such as BigChange in place, compliance worries can become a thing of the past.

BigChange records all actions in the system for a detailed audit trail, from engineers’ time spent on the road to timesheets and jobs completed. Subsequently, you can ensure that your field engineers are working within legal hours and that you’ve paid them the right amount for the work they’ve completed.

Additionally, your back-office team can create workflows to assign to each scheduled job. The workflows are mandatory and ensure that the technician has carried out appropriate health and safety measures, such as conducting a risk assessment before starting the project. 

Once the work is complete, they can capture photos and signatures from their mobile devices to ensure that the work is compliant and meets industry standards. The system instantly assigns every piece of information your technicians capture to the scheduled job, so you have a complete record to look back on should you need to in the future.

Make the Switch to Intelligent Scheduling with BigChange

BigChange is the complete Job Management Platform that’s helping field service businesses across the UK to win more work, take control of their operations and deliver winning customer experiences.

Bringing together customer relationship management (CRM), job scheduling, live tracking, field resource management, financial management, business intelligence into one simple to use and easy to integrate platform your business can run on.

Want to find out more?

Discover how BigChange field service management software can make your business grow stronger here and arrange a free demo today.

Did you know that a stressed and anxious driver’s heart rate can accelerate from its typical 70bpm to 180bpm? Road rage increases a driver’s chance of getting into an accident, and when it comes to travelling between jobs, managers should do all in their power to ensure their field service engineers are driving stress free. 

As a leader in driver safety, BigChange has developed workforce management software, including a GPS vehicle tracking system, whose goal is to make roads safer. Through our initiative Leaders for Life, we have conducted studies that reveal the true nature of this problem, such as our 2017 study, where we learned that possibly a third of fatal crashes happened on the job

In this article, we’ll discuss ways that you can positively influence your operations so that your field service technicians can travel between jobs safely.

1. Use a GPS Vehicle Tracking System

In the 21st century, it’s hard to imagine ordering something, whether a product or a job, and not receiving an update on when it will arrive. Unfortunately, this is the experience that many businesses in the field service industry experience when they rely on non-digital means of communication and paperwork. 

BigChange’s advanced GPS vehicle tracking system makes poor visibility problems obsolete. Not only will you see when your field service technician will arrive on the customer’s job site, but you can track their drive live on the platform. The system also shares real speed limits so that you can tell if a driver is speeding, which could increase the likelihood of an accident. 

The GPS vehicle tracking system also ensures your field service engineers arrive at the exact location they need to be. While mobile maps, such as Google maps, are often correct, there are times when the exact location of a job isn’t available on the map. Unreliable information could cause your field service technician to drive around searching for the location, which could distract them from focusing on the road. 

Using the BigChange platform, you can create and manage territories and geofences so that your field service engineer knows exactly where to meet your client.

2. Ensure Vehicle Safety Checks

If you’re the Head of Operations at your company, it’s unlikely you’ll know everything about every vehicle in your fleet. At most companies, the state of a field service technician’s vehicle is logged in a book or spreadsheet somewhere only accessible to the back-office staff. 

With BigChange’s mobile workforce software and GPS vehicle tracking system, you’ll have access to your entire fleet’s history and real-time-location with the tap of your finger. Not only does this give you a comprehensive overview of  each vehicle, its age, mileage, and condition, you will also be able to access each DVSA compliant walkaround to ensure your vehicles are safe for driving. 

Now you’ll know the status of every vehicle you have out on the road and your field technicians will be less likely to encounter problems while traveling between jobs. 

3. Analyse Technician Driving History

When most companies hire field service technicians, the last thing they think about is how they drive when they travel between jobs. Usually a business’s priority is to hire top talent with the most competitive rates. When it comes to safety, though, managers need to keep an eye-out for how their field service technicians are driving. 

BigChange’s commitment to improving safety on UK roads is why we’ve developed an advanced driver behaviour analysis feature for our platform. Using our GPS vehicle tracking system, you can generate an analysis for each technician that includes their idling, speeding, cornering, braking, and harsh accelerations. To give managers an at-a-glance view of each field service technician’s driving behaviour, the platform assigns a driving score for each driver. 

Combine this driver behaviour analysis with our advanced time-stamping records for each driver, and you’ll be able to understand how your field technicians are driving and if they’re taking the necessary breaks to ensure they’ll be alert on the road.

4.Reduce Time Spent Traveling Between Jobs

As we mentioned earlier, stress can lead to road rage, and one of the best ways to stress out a field service technician is to overlook their travel between jobs. Although field service technicians are paid for travel between jobs, the annual road casualties report indicates that the time spent traveling between jobs can influence the likelihood of an accident. 

Put simply, the more time your field service technicians spend traveling between jobs, the more opportunities there are for a crash. 

Fortunately, it’s easy to reduce a technician’s travel time between jobs using BigChange’s intelligent scheduling assistant. The intelligent scheduling assistant enables you to shorten your technicians’ routes by sharing the following real-time information:

  • Real-time resource location
  • live-traffic information
  • job constraints (such as skills or qualifications)
  • Type of vehicle
  • Inventory
  • Detailed service information
  • Customer history and requirements

This data will show you the nearest and most experienced technicians, allowing you to reduce travel time, and potential accidents, by hiring someone who is already near the job site.

5. Prevent Texting While Driving

Without field service management software like BigChange, many field service technicians end up having to answer calls, texts, and emails while on the job, or worse, on the road. Hiccups on the job, such as an unexpected missing part, can also put field service engineers off schedule, resulting in the need to inform the next customer of a changed arrival time. 

When using BigChange’s job management software, your field service technicians no longer have to notify the client if they’re running late. The platform will send an automated message with the driver’s ETA as well as a live tracking link so that the customer knows exactly how far away your field technician is.

Help Your Field Service Technicians Travel Safely with BigChange

Creating safer roads is in everyone’s best interest, and as managers, you have the opportunity to make a big difference in making our roads safer. By using BigChange’s GPS tracking system you can receive your field service technician’s real-time driving information and verify they’re not speeding. 

Our job management software also gives you access to vehicle safety checks and driver behaviour analysis that will give you a clearer picture of how each driver is behaving so you can identify problematic driving patterns and vehicles. Auto-alerts sent to the client and geofenced locations can also keep your field service technicians from getting distracted on the road. 

Want to find out more?

Discover how BigChange can make your business grow stronger, arrange a free demo today.

Historically, field service businesses that want to expand have had to rely on unfamiliar subcontractors and invest money in hiring more staff to keep up with the volume of work. However, it can be tricky to maintain a smooth operation when you don’t have visibility over your workers or control over the processes they use.

Plus, with the skills shortage making it increasingly challenging to find talent, companies will need to consider other, more modern ways to grow. Luckily, technology can provide a cost-effective and convenient solution.

Read on to find out more about the BigChange Network and learn how networking with other businesses will enable you to enhance your operations.

What is the BigChange Network?

Joining BigChange means that your business can gain access to the BigChange Network, where you can connect with thousands of trusted, like-minded organisations around the country. You will have the opportunity to collaborate with each other to expand your services without the risk that usually accompanies company growth.

Since the Network is integrated with our BigChange job management software platform, you won’t have to wrap your head around another system. Instead, you can simply manage your subcontractors using the back-office technology you currently use for your own team, making for an efficient and uncomplicated workflow. 

Want to discover more? Check out this informative video.

The BigChange Network: How Technology Can Help Your Business

Here are just some of the ways the BigChange Network can benefit your organisation:

1. Straightforward Networking Opportunities

Did you know that 41% of people want to network more frequently but believe they don’t have the time? In-person networking events can take a significant chunk out of your day when you could be focusing on running your business. But, in today’s talent-short market, networking has never been so crucial.

With the BigChange Network, you won’t have to leave your office to enjoy the benefits that networking provides. Rather, you can post your organisation on the system for free and start receiving connection requests immediately. From there, you’ll have the choice to collaborate on projects with a range of different, BigChange-approved field service companies.

You can also specify the types of jobs you have available, along with the skills required, so you can rest assured that you’ll only be working with the most relevant subcontractors. 

2. Complete Visibility Over Operations

Over 75% of field service organisations currently rely on third parties to carry out work. Although reliance on subcontractors is a necessary part of scaling your operations, it comes with a whole host of potential issues. 

Whether you pin your reputation on an unfamiliar technician who does an unsatisfactory job, or you have to spend time chasing them because your customers need an update, you’ll quickly find that traditional methods of hiring subcontractors do more harm than good.

That’s where the BigChange Network comes in.

All businesses on the platform are approved BigChange members, so you can be confident that you’ll only be working with the most reputable engineers who will represent your company appropriately. Plus, you can see how each job is progressing in real-time as subcontractors can provide you with live updates straight from their mobile devices.

You’ll receive an alert as soon as the subcontractor has completed the work, ensuring that everything remains on schedule and your customers are satisfied. 

No more waiting. No more chasing.

3. Control Over Processes

81% of customers claim they need to trust a brand in order to buy products or services from them. Consequently, if you’ve spent time and effort building up your reputation in the market, it can be daunting using a third party to represent your business. 

Not only could they fail to meet your high standards, but paperwork with a different organisation’s branding on it could be confusing to your customers and potentially cause them to lose trust in your company. As a result, you’ll be spending more time resolving problems than focusing on business-critical tasks.

When you become a member of the BigChange Network, you don’t have to worry about confusing processes. You’ll be able to carry on using your preferred worksheets and procedures to ensure the subcontractor completes the job exactly as you expect. Additionally, customers will receive paperwork with your company’s branding, so they know a trusted technician has carried out the work.

You’ll also be able to invoice as usual, using agreed rates shared via the Network. As such, you’ll still benefit from the convenient, paperless processes that the BigChange job management platform provides, and your customers won’t notice any difference from your usual service.

Networking with Other Businesses is Simple when You Use BigChange

Increase your reach without high levels of capital expenditure.

The BigChange Network is a seamless way of connecting with other trusted contractors and subcontractors in our system. Experience the perks of expanding your business without worrying that unfamiliar contractors are misrepresenting your brand or carrying out unacceptable work.

Plus, you’ll have the opportunity to increase your bottom line even further by selling your services to other BigChange users around the world.

Want to find out more?

Discover how BigChange field service management software can make your business grow stronger here and arrange a free demo today.

According to The Health and Safety Executive (HSE), UK businesses lost an eye-watering 38.8 million working days due to occupational ill health and non-fatal workplace injuries during 2019-20. However, companies could avoid a large proportion of these lost days in the future by ensuring that they manage their health and safety protocols effectively.

Fortunately, health and safety has come a long way since the days of clipboards and pens. There are now more superior ways to assess and mitigate risks, thanks to the technological advancements we’ve experienced in recent years. 

Read on to find out more about how health and safety compliance management software can aid in keeping your employees safe and benefit your business simultaneously.

Keeping Your Employees Safe with Technology: What are the Benefits?

As an employer, it is your responsibility to ensure that your employees, and anyone else who may be affected by your business, are safe from harm during working hours. However, when you rely on manual processes and paper-based documents to handle your health and safety procedures, you run the risk of occupational illnesses and injuries becoming more commonplace and, at worst, being fined for non-compliance.  

In contrast, health and safety compliance management software can simplify the entire process, reducing the potential for human error and improving worker health and safety. Here are just some of the benefits your organisation could enjoy by using technology to handle workplace hazards:

1. Less Human Error

When it comes to health and safety, human error can be the difference between life and death. With HSE recording 111 fatal workplace injuries over the course of just one year, businesses must do all they can to improve their processes and reduce the frequency of avoidable disasters.

By using health and safety compliance management software, you can significantly lower the margin for errors to occur. You will be able to manage all health and safety-related documents in the system using pre-populated, correct information. For example, you can add method statements that field engineers must complete from their mobile devices before they can begin a job. 

Promoting health and safety in the workplace via mandatory method statements reduces the likelihood that your technicians will forget vital protocols.

2. Guaranteed Compliance

In 2016, the Sentencing Council introduced harsher penalties for businesses that fail to manage health and safety risks appropriately. Consequently, the fine has skyrocketed to £150,000. Therefore, to avoid a severe financial hit, you must ensure your business manages workplace hazards compliantly.

Fortunately, keeping your employees safe needn’t be challenging or costly when you use the latest health and safety software

You can create mandatory electronic workflows and integrated mobile safety checklists, ensuring your technicians follow industry-standard protocols. Not only do these digital documents enable your workers to complete jobs compliantly, but they also have the potential to increase first-time fix rates significantly because they ensure that workers complete jobs to the highest standard.

3. Streamlined Processes and Improved Productivity

Typically, UK workers spend around two hours per day completing administration tasks. Consequently, companies are missing out on opportunities for growth since their employees are focused on manual processes instead of business-critical work.

Digitising your health and safety procedures eliminates the time-consuming paperwork and provides your team with a more streamlined workflow. Engineers can complete digital forms from their mobile devices and instantly send them through to your back-office team instead of filling out paper-based forms and hand-delivering them to the office at the end of the day.

The system automatically records all details, including any photographs the technicians take on-site, to ensure that you have an easy-to-access record of all work. As such, your employees won’t have to spend hours filing and sorting through documents and, instead, they can focus on doing what they do best.

4. Boosted Worker Morale

Research shows that companies with highly engaged employees experience 21% greater profitability, indicating that worker happiness plays a significant role in business success.

But, when your employees don’t believe that you’re prioritising their health and safety, their morale will take a nosedive. Plus, if there are lots of barriers standing in the way of your workers being able to complete jobs safely, they will have to waste time trying to resolve issues.

As a result, you’ll find that your workers take more sick days, and productivity reaches an all-time low.

With BigChange’s health and safety compliance management software, you and your employees can rest assured that suitable measures are in place to prevent workplace hazards. 

For example, field engineers can answer a questionnaire from their mobile device, which identifies risks at the customer site. The system automatically triggers an alert to your back-office staff, allowing them to take immediate action and protect the technician.

Plus, you can carry out daily electronic vehicle walk-around checks, which allow you to identify defects and potential problems. As a result, you’ll have a reliable and legal fleet on the road, and your technicians won’t have to worry about their safety as they travel to your customers.

Promoting Health and Safety in the Workplace Has Never Been Simpler with BigChange

Your people are your most important asset. 

BigChange gives you the power to keep your employees working safely and ensure their personal information is secure and up-to-date.

With our online driver behaviour analysis, risk assessments, method statements and vehicle walk-around checks, you can rest assured that health and safety are a number one priority.

Want to find out more?

Discover how our Job Management Software can make your business grow stronger, arrange a free demo today.

In 2020, a quarter of field service organisations still relied on spreadsheets for job management, while the remainder used whiteboards and other manual methods. However, as the COVID-19 crisis demonstrated, technology has the potential to remodel and improve working practices.

Therefore, to stay ahead of the curve and avoid becoming obsolete in an increasingly digital world, businesses must consider modern ways to make their processes more efficient.

In this article, we’ll explain the importance of job management software and share how intelligent scheduling can maximise efficiency to benefit your business.

What is Job Management Software?

Efficient job management is critical to maintaining the workflow and creating order within your organisation. Everyone knows what they’re supposed to be doing, when they’re supposed to be doing it and where, allowing them to concentrate on delivering exceptional service to your customers. 

Job management software revolutionises the way field service businesses schedule their technicians’ time. Unlike unmanageable legacy systems and manual, paper-based methods, modern technology gives you access to real-time data. As such, you can rapidly respond to customer requirements and assign the perfect resource for the job every time.

The system also takes location, traffic information, job constraints and vehicle type into consideration to lower costs, optimise travel distance and improve productivity.

How Intelligent Scheduling Can Benefit Your Field Service Business

Since so many businesses bank on manual processes to maintain their job schedule, it’s not surprising that scheduling and dispatching difficulties present one of the top challenges to field service operations.

That’s where job management software comes in. By making use of technology to optimise your resources, you could enjoy the following benefits:

1. Lowered Travel Costs

With petrol prices skyrocketing to an eight-year high in the UK, field service companies will need to devise new ways to optimise their engineers’ journeys. But, it can be tricky to plan routes effectively using traditional methods, and businesses who don’t modernise may find that they’re losing profits unnecessarily. 

Instead, when you use an intelligent scheduling assistant, you’ll be able to see technicians’ locations in real-time so you can deploy them to nearby customers, reducing their fuel consumption. 

Plus, you can optimise hundreds of jobs instantly. The system will calculate the overall ‘cost to serve’ per job and provide hints that enable you to lower the travel expenses associated with each project. 

As a result, you’ll find that field engineers’ journeys are far shorter, and they need to fill up their tanks less frequently.

2. Maximised Efficiency and Productivity

According to research, businesses waste an astonishing 140 hours per year by creating a manual job schedule. Burdensome administration tasks act as a morale killer for your team, lower productivity levels and increase the margin for error. 

At worst, unfulfilling work can result in a high staff turnover.

Spending so much time on laborious, ineffective processes and recruiting replacement employees takes time away from more business-critical tasks and stunts company growth.

In contrast, state-of-the-art job management software allows your team to complete tasks, such as booking recurring jobs and sharing electronic documents, at the touch of a button. Eliminating the error-prone and arduous aspects of scheduling workers’ jobs frees up more time for your back-office staff to focus on what they do best. 

Additionally, using an intelligent scheduling assistant to optimise technicians’ routes not only saves on fuel costs but also enhances productivity. Less time spent travelling per day provides more opportunities to complete more jobs and boost your bottom line as a result.

3. Increased First-Time Fix Rates

Let’s imagine for a moment that your engineer, Claire, has just finished working on a job. She checks her schedule and heads to the next project your team assigned to her nearby. Your customer shows Claire the problem, which is an easy fix. Claire heads out to her van to get the parts she needs but soon realises they’re not there. 

Consequently, Claire has to come back later after picking up the correct parts. Apart from being inconvenient for both parties, failure to complete a job first-time is costly and unproductive.

When using job management software, you can increase first-time fix rates by assigning items directly to jobs. With complete visibility over your workers and their equipment, you remove the risk of a technician turning up to a project without the gear they need to complete it the first time.

4. Better Workflows

45% of technicians report that their current tools aren’t fast enough, and a further 38% say they can’t access all the information they need. As a consequence, they have to take time out of their day to hunt down vital details and manually share job status updates with the back-office team using outdated methods of communication.

In comparison, job management software ensures that communication between technicians, your back office and customers is seamless. You can create simple, step-by-step workflows that mandate tasks against your standard processes. Technicians can then effortlessly capture additional information, such as photos, from the client site to create and share electronic documents instantly.

Maximise Efficiency with BigChange’s Job Management Software

Provide excellent service on schedule. Every single time.

BigChange’s intelligent scheduling assistant provides you with live data. Therefore, you can make informed decisions about the best resource for each job, reducing time spent on the road, increasing productivity and lowering travel costs.

Want to find out more?

Discover how BigChange field service management software can make your business grow stronger here and arrange a free demo today.

51% of organisations continue to rely on phone calls, texts, outdated legacy systems and burdensome, paper-based administration methods to manage their field service operations. 

Businesses that continue to use manual and paper-based processes instead of adopting technologies to maximise their efficiency risk being left behind by competitors. Research shows that a massive 89% of customers prefer to use an “Uber-like” service for ordering and tracking field worker services, so traditional methods of managing your schedule aren’t going to keep your customers coming back in future.

Thankfully, job scheduling software can eliminate the difficulties of creating an efficient workflow and can automate the entire process for you and your customers. Streamlined ways of working impress your customers, reduces your back-office admin and boosts your bottom line. 

Read on to learn how to use software to simplify your field service appointment scheduling.

Using a self-service portal

88% of consumers expect an organisation to have some form of self-service portal available. If your business is still using a ‘contact us to book’ method for appointments, then you should consider adopting software that allows your customers to manage their bookings at their own convenience. Not only do self-service portals improve the customer experience, but you will likely see an increase in bookings.

Show your availability

Using self-service software allows your customers to book appointments when it suits them, at the most convenient time for them. Sharing your availability allows the customer to book immediately when they need to, instead of waiting for business hours to contact your company and find out when you are available to help them.

Additionally, online scheduling software enables your customers to log onto your schedule or reschedule jobs at the touch of a button. Again, the convenience of managing their booking themselves will save them time and create a better customer experience and reduce administrative work for your back-office team.

BigChange’s intelligent scheduling assistant goes even further by allowing your team to allocate and reallocate resources based on location, traffic information, job constraints, and vehicle type. As a result, your customers will get the best and nearest resource for the job — and be able to track their technician or engineer with the built-in geolocation.

Notification features

Providing your customers with transparency about the job status and their engineers’ locations is essential. In fact, if a business sends automatic updates, then 68% of customers have a better opinion of the company.

BigChange’s field service management software allows your customers to see the precise live location of their engineer via the geolocation vehicle tracking feature. Subsequently, they will never again wonder when the engineer will show up or have to wait around all day because they were given a vague timeslot.

Repeat customer bookings

Using online scheduling software that allows your customers to manage bookings on their own is one step in the right direction to building an excellent customer experience. However, you can go one step further to delight your customers by making it simpler than ever to book repeat appointments.

BigChange’s recurring job templates are perfect for customers who know they have many jobs for you. The recurring job feature enables you to group jobs so you can schedule them all in one go. Not only have you saved your customer time and stress, but the software makes for less administrative work for your office staff too.

The software still has features that allow you or your customer to create an automatic follow-up job if more work has to be carried out. Fortunately, the new appointment for the additional work will also link to any previous jobs so that all the relevant information is readily available for the customer or engineer who is working on it. 

The new job automatically created as a follow up will include the job contract, original project details, skills required, any constraints that apply, financial line items, original engineer’s comments about the job, and documentation such as risk assessments. Having all relevant information connected to each related job saves your field workforce time and admin when working on the new project. 

Automating and simplifying the scheduling process for your customers makes the experience of doing business with you faster and easier. Ultimately, that’s what customers expect for an excellent experience with your company.

Using scheduling software for more jobs and profit

With an intelligent scheduling assistant, you can optimise your schedule and free up more time for engineers to attend additional jobs each day. 

For example, the software can create a more streamlined calendar based on appointments, their purpose and the time they took. This system then frees up any time that had previously been unavailable for booking due to out of date manual scheduling processes or human error. 

56% of field service professionals say that their customers are demanding faster response times. By using software that optimises your schedule, you’ll have the resource to act rapidly. Your customer needs will be met quicker when using a scheduling assistant as the diary will likely have better availability since all other appointments are optimised. In addition, more free time means more ability to respond to emergency call outs, as the schedule can be flexible enough to accommodate emergency customer scenarios. 

Not only will the intelligent scheduling assistant allow you to take on more jobs to create more revenue, but you can make your bottom line stronger on BigChange because the platform has an integrated invoicing feature. The feature makes the payment process far more straightforward so that there are fewer delays and less admin involved in getting paid for completed work. In addition, quicker payments mean better cash flow, which benefits everyone in the business.

Field service appointment scheduling is simpler on BigChange

BigChange is the complete Job Management Platform that’s helping field service businesses across the UK to win more work, take control of their operations and deliver winning customer experiences.

Bringing together customer relationship management (CRM), job scheduling, live tracking, field resource management, financial management, business intelligence into one simple to use and easy to integrate platform your business can run on.

Discover how BigChange field service management software can make your business grow stronger here and arrange a free demo today.

On average, employees waste around 26% of each day on burdensome administrative chores and outdated ways of working. Consequently, field service businesses are losing out on opportunities to improve their customer experience, complete more work, boost their bottom line and grow their company.

That’s where BigChange comes in. 

Martin Port, Founder and Chairman at BigChange, commented:

“I founded BigChange in 2013 to liberate businesses of all sizes from inefficient, manual processes. With our innovative platform, we have democratised the industry, creating a simple, scalable platform that lets any business manage its whole operation all the way from quotation to invoice on a mobile or tablet.”


Read on to learn more about BigChange’s field service management software and how it can help grow your business.

How BigChange’s Field Service Management Software Can Benefit Your Business

BigChange is a field service management platform that enables you to handle all aspects of running a field service business in one place. Modernise your ways of working and experience the following benefits when you deploy our system:

1. Advanced Back Office and CRM Processes

Research shows that 52% of field service businesses still rely on manual methods to keep their operations running. Although tried and tested processes may eventually get the job done, they’re terribly inefficient and could cause several problems, including:

Dissatisfied Customers

61.5% of marketing professionals agree that poor customer experience (CX) leads to a loss in clientele. Modern customers are used to straightforward, digital experiences, and they expect the same from your company, so you must consider ways to make your processes meet their standards. 

Unfortunately, sluggish, manual workflows aren’t going to cut it in today’s world of instant gratification, and businesses that don’t stay ahead of the curve run the risk of becoming obsolete.

However, with BigChange’s fully integrated CRM, customers can easily book and reschedule appointments via an online portal. You can then instantly log all interactions with each client for simple case management and create templates for automated communication, which keeps your customers in the loop. 

Plus, you can digitise all your paperwork, meaning that your field technicians can immediately send forms to your back office once they have completed a job. Customers won’t have to wait several days to sign documents as they’ll be able to sign straight away from their mobile device and receive an invoice the same day. 

Demotivated Workers

Did you know that happier employees are up to 20% more productive than unhappy ones? Therefore, to get the most out of your people, you must ensure that their work is fulfilling and exciting. 

Teams that have to carry out laborious, repetitive tasks will become dissatisfied, leading to lowered productivity, poor communication with field engineers, more errors and, in some cases, resignations. 

Instead, when you arm your back-office employees with BigChange’s state-of-the-art field service management software, you eliminate several monotonous administration tasks and free up your team’s time to focus on business-critical projects. 

Irregular Cash Flow

Typically, it takes 11 hours for an AR (accounts receivable) team to manually process an invoice. Your customer then has to wait several more days to receive the invoice in the mail before they can write a cheque and mail it back to you, provided there are no errors that could inadvertently stall the process further.

Since manual processes are slow and inherently error-prone, they often lead to late payments, which can be detrimental to field service businesses. A poor cash flow may prevent you from taking on new projects, meeting operational expenses, maintaining supplier relationships, and growing your business.

In contrast, BigChange’s CRM software significantly reduces the risk of human error by making the entire invoicing process digital. You can produce all documents directly in the system using pre-populated customer data to ensure the information is correct.

According to Helen Carrison, Company Secretary at Kingston Cleaning Solutions:

BigChange is the perfect CRM solution. We don’t need delivery notes anymore, which saves us time and money. Now, customers can sign off jobs on the BigChange computer, and we can invoice straight away.”

2. Superior Job Scheduling

With so many organisations depending on outmoded processes to maintain their job schedule, it’s easy to see how scheduling and dispatching difficulties present one of the top challenges for field service businesses.

When you don’t have complete visibility over who is working for you, where they’re working and when, it can be tricky to ensure the right resource is always in the right place. 

But, with BigChange, scheduling issues can be a thing of the past. Our smart scheduling software enables you to do the following:

  • Account for location, traffic information, job constraints and vehicle type
  • Optimise technicians’ routes to reduce time spent on the roads and lower costs
  • Create rules for unscheduled jobs and automatically allocate them to custom categories
  • Produce custom pricing models for each job type, with customer-specific prices and rate tables
  • Check parts, equipment and stock availability in multiple locations and assign them to jobs
  • Design step-by-step workflows that mandate work against your standard processes
  • Create and share electronic certificates, reports and job cards instantly

As a result, you’ll be able to improve communication, boost first-time fix rates, complete more jobs per day, and offer better service to your customers, all of which help grow your business.

According to David Robbie, Managing Director at McDougall:

“BigChange has fundamentally impacted the way we operate. By automating job scheduling and routing, we have increased the number of jobs we can do with the same resources. Productivity has been boosted by 17 per cent.”

3. Real-Time Vehicle and Asset Tracking

Shockingly, 43% of businesses cannot track their inventory and assets effectively because they still use traditional methods such as paper-based tracking sheets.

Although, in theory, it may make sense to ask your technicians to sign equipment and assets in and out, it doesn’t work in practice. Whether the engineers’ writing is illegible, they forget to sign the sheets, or they accidentally take too many items and store them in their van for future projects, numbers will soon become skewed.

At worst, inconsistent numbers could eventually halt your projects because you may not have the right equipment available, despite your tracker showing that you do. You may also end up ordering replacement items needlessly, putting a dent in your profits.

BigChange’s real-time vehicle and asset tracker is designed to prevent inconsistencies and give you visibility over your assets, regardless of location. Also, with the system updating in real-time, you can track the location of all your vehicles and assets on the road to allocate resources rapidly throughout the ever-changing workday. 

Marty Collins, Office Manager at CMT Wood Flooring, commented:

“With BigChange’s software, we now have complete visibility, enhanced productivity, better customer service and improved driver behaviour. It’s also helped resolve disputes regarding times and locations.”

4. Easy-To-Use Mobile Workforce App

Although field technicians are off-site for most of the day, mobile technology is still not standard in field service businesses. However, 80% of field service technicians say that mobile technology is critical to increasing their efficiency and effectiveness at helping customers.

With BigChange’s mobile workforce app for iOS and Android, you and your technicians will have access to all the necessary information in one place. Furthermore, you can manage the entire end-to-end process, from appointment booking to invoicing, in the palm of your hand.

The app synchronises new jobs, completed jobs and those in progress between technicians’ mobile devices and your back office in real-time. Subsequently, your team can send job cards and certificates directly to your customers as soon as work is complete. 

Not only can the app free up more time for your technicians to focus on doing an outstanding job, but your customers will appreciate the more rapid service and excellent communication.

5. Revolutionary Collaboration Network

Historically, field service businesses that want to grow have had to hire more staff to keep up with increasing workloads. But, with the skills shortage presenting a threat to the industry, companies will need to think of other, innovative ways to expand without needing to take on more people or rely on unfamiliar subcontractors who are difficult and costly to manage.

Fortunately, with technology, the possibilities for business growth are endless.

BigChange’s Network is a seamless way of connecting with other trusted contractors and subcontractors in the system. You can collaborate with them to expand your services and increase your reach without high levels of capital expenditure.

Here are some of the benefits you can enjoy by using the BigChange Network:

Free Business Listing

Post your business on the system and start receiving networking requests immediately. You’ll have the choice to work with a range of different companies.

Robust Security and Privacy

All information on the Network is entirely secure as we use the latest cloud-based technology.

Real-Time Progress Updates

You’ll be able to see how the job is progressing as contractors and subcontractors can provide live updates from their mobile devices.

Instant Alerting

Your contractor will receive an alert as soon as the subcontractor has completed the work, improving communication and ensuring everything remains on schedule.

Superior Processes

You can continue to use your own preferred worksheets so you can rest assured the subcontractor completes the job to your high standards.

Define the Job Types You Want

You’ll be able to share the types of jobs you want, along with the skills required to complete them.

A Straightforward Experience

Customers will still receive paperwork with the original company’s branding on it, but you can invoice as normal, so there’s no disruption on either end.

Agreed Rates

The system uses agreed rates shared via our Network to calculate the invoice, meaning you’ll never be out of pocket.

Above all, by meeting virtually every month with other members to network and form partnerships, you’ll feel inspired and have practical ideas on how to drive your business growth further.

Grow Your Field Service Business with BigChange

BigChange is the complete Job Management Platform that’s helping field service businesses across the UK to win more work, take control of their operations and deliver winning customer experiences.

Bringing together customer relationship management (CRM), job scheduling, live tracking, field resource management, financial management, business intelligence into one simple to use and easy to integrate platform your business can run on.

Want to find out more?

Discover how BigChange’s complete job management platform can make your business grow stronger here and arrange a free demo today.

According to a report, a staggering 43% of small businesses fail to track their assets and inventory effectively. Many field service organisations still rely on antiquated, manual tracking methods, and some have no official processes in place, leaving them vulnerable to a range of potentially costly issues.

But, companies can’t afford to slip up if they are to survive in a post-COVID world.

In this article, we’ll explain what asset management is and why accurate and reliable data is so important. Plus, we’ll share how a comprehensive asset register is a must-have to keep track of your stock and equipment, and just one of the feature’s on the BigChange field service management software platform.

What is Asset Management?

Asset management is a crucial element of any field service business, whether you have 50 employees or 5,000. It’s responsible for keeping track of all the items a company uses to operate, from tools, vehicles and devices, to parts for customer jobs.

Historically, many field service organisations have relied on spreadsheets and paper-based tracking sheets to record the status of their equipment and assets. But, traditional methods often result in inaccurate reports and can cost companies dearly. 

With state-of-the-art asset management software in place, unreliable data becomes a problem of the past. Modern systems record data in real-time, allowing you to make more informed business decisions based on fact rather than needing to count on potentially skewed details. 

Why Accurate and Reliable Data is So Important in Asset Management

Without accurate and reliable data, you won’t have full visibility over your equipment and assets. As a result, you could end up spending more money than you need to, reducing first-time fix rates, increasing downtime and losing high-value items. 

Instead, companies that have access to solid asset management data benefit from the following:

1. Fewer Equipment Losses

On paper, it makes sense to use manual check-out and check-in sheets to keep track of your equipment. However, traditional asset management methods don’t always work in practice and are inherently error-prone. In fact, human error is the leading problem for 46% of businesses when it comes to accurately reporting on assets.

Whether your engineers forget to sign the sheets, inadvertently take too many items and stash them in their van for another project, or their writing is simply illegible, you’ll soon realise that numbers aren’t adding up.

As such, your equipment can go missing, and there’s no exact way of tracking what happened to it. Not only will lost equipment likely stall other projects, but replacements can be pricey. 

Instead, when you digitise your asset management approach, you can create a detailed register of equipment and other vital assets, maintain a record of fitted parts, track item movements and include serial numbers, barcodes or QR codes on the stock. Your engineers can then check inventory in and out directly from their mobile devices, and you will have better visibility over your valuable equipment.

2. Improved Finances

Did you know, 80% of equipment maintenance is reactive? Studies show that most field service businesses only maintain their assets when they break down or need immediate repair. However, proactive conservation of stock equipment and assets is less expensive in the long run and prevents disruptions to your workflow.

But, it can be challenging to schedule regular maintenance when you don’t have full visibility over your equipment and data isn’t being recorded properly. Broken equipment can have a knock-on effect, leaving your workers without the tools or materials they need to carry out jobs. Aside from being a major inconvenience, halted projects will destroy your bottom line.

With a cloud-based asset and stock management tool, you can raise cases directly against your equipment for more efficient maintenance. Your engineers will always have the right gear for the job, and you won’t have to worry about something breaking down unexpectedly.

Plus, you can use the accurate and reliable data that the system updates in real-time to make the most of your assets. Assign stock and equipment directly to jobs for seamless check-in and check-outs, maximising efficiency, profit and first-time fix rates.

3. Processes that Grow as the Business Does

Unfortunately, inaccurate asset management reporting results in an estimated $1.1 trillion loss for businesses globally. Although manual processes may work when you don’t have many items to consider, it doesn’t provide you with much room to scale your operations. Consequently, you may struggle to monitor all your stock as your business grows.

Using asset and stock management software, you’ll have the most accurate and reliable data to hand, which allows you to digitally keep track of all your assets, regardless of quantity or location. Subsequently, you’ll never have an issue with over-ordering stock or not having the suitable materials or equipment available for scheduled jobs.

With an easy-to-use platform in place, you can also maintain your team’s productivity by eliminating burdensome processes and freeing up their time to focus on other tasks that contribute directly to business growth. 

Make Asset Management Simpler with BigChange

Asset management needn’t be a headache.

With BigChange’s complete field service management software solution, you’ll have access to real-time data on the location of your stock and equipment. With complete visibility over your assets, you can assign them directly to jobs, allowing your technicians to complete more projects per day.

Plus, you can easily manage stock in various locations, from warehouses and vans to client sites.

Want to find out more?
Discover how BigChange’s job management software can make your business grow stronger here and arrange a free demo today.


Statistics show that 52% of organisations continue to rely on phone calls, texts, outdated legacy systems and burdensome, paper-based administration methods to manage their field service operations. 

But, companies that want to prosper in a post-pandemic world will have to step up their game to meet customer expectations and maintain their cash flow. 

To effectively manage a field service business, you must ensure that you have excellent communication methods and efficient processes that maintain the workflow. Plus, you’ll need complete visibility over your workforce, inventory and finances.

With field service management software, you can seamlessly connect your office, field-based workers and customers. Better communication makes the entire procedure – from quotation to invoicing – streamlined and agile.

Read on to find out how technology can benefit your business in more detail.

How Will Field Service Management Software Help My Business?

1. Superior Job Scheduling

Job scheduling is a crucial component of field service management. However, organisations that depend on antiquated systems and manual processes to manage their schedule may struggle with unnecessary downtime, dispatching issues and overlaps that complicate the entire workflow.

With field service job scheduling software, you can simplify your job scheduling methods and increase efficiency. State-of-the-art platforms take into account future predicted workloads by allowing you to set up recurring jobs and allocate the resources required. 

Using real-time data and geolocation tracking, you can assign projects to the appropriately skilled engineer nearest to the customer. Modern systems can also handle the dynamic nature of the workday, enabling you to promptly re-allocate resources to fit in emergency jobs and mitigate any potentially costly issues before they occur.

Automated, smart scheduling processes reduce time spent on the road, lower travel costs and enable your field-based engineers to complete a higher volume of work each day.

Why Accurate and Reliable Data is So Important in Asset Management

Without accurate and reliable data, you won’t have full visibility over your equipment and assets. As a result, you could end up spending more money than you need to, reducing first-time fix rates, increasing downtime and losing high-value items. 

Instead, companies that have access to solid asset management data benefit from the following:

1. Fewer Equipment Losses

On paper, it makes sense to use manual check-out and check-in sheets to keep track of your equipment. However, traditional asset management methods don’t always work in practice and are inherently error-prone. In fact, human error is the leading problem for 46% of businesses when it comes to accurately reporting on assets.

Whether your technicians forget to sign the sheets, inadvertently take too many items and stash them in their van for another project, or their writing is simply illegible, you’ll soon realise that numbers aren’t adding up.

As such, your equipment can go missing, and there’s no exact way of tracking what happened to it. Not only will lost equipment likely stall other projects, but replacements can be pricey. 

Instead, when you digitise your asset management methods, you can create a detailed register of equipment and other vital assets, maintain a record of fitted parts, track item movements and include serial numbers, barcodes or QR codes on the stock. Your technicians can then check inventory in and out directly from their mobile devices, and you will have better visibility over your valuable equipment.

2. Visibility Over Finances

Cutting costs and increasing revenue are essential to business success. But, if you don’t have complete visibility over your financial data, or if information is stored across multiple platforms, you may be unable to visualise the whole picture, create suitable budgets or make informed decisions.

Field service management software gives you complete visibility over operational spending and other vital metrics such as unpaid or overdue invoices. With access to the latest and most accurate data all stored in one place, you’ll be able to make better judgments when ordering stock and create more realistic budgets for the future based on your current situation.

Better control over your finances and spending will ensure that your business has the funds it needs to take on more projects in the future and continue to grow. 

3. Enhanced Cash Flow

Let’s imagine for a moment that your accounts receivable team has mailed a paper invoice to your customer. The invoice arrives several days later, and the customer puts it on their finance department’s desk to process. 

However, the customer’s finance department accidentally throws the paper in the bin. Several days later, your accounts receivable team realises that the payment is overdue, so they call the client. 

Unfortunately, their finance department can’t find the invoice, so your team now has to send out a new one and wait even longer for the cheque to come through. In the meantime, your cash flow has taken a hit, and you’re wondering how you’ll cover other operational expenses.

With field service management software, you can speed up the payments process. Once your field-based engineers have marked the job as complete from their mobile devices, an electronic invoice is immediately issued to your customer. Alternatively, your accounts receivable team can generate the invoice directly in the system. You can also include payment links, which enable your customers to pay via card and mark the invoice as complete.

No more lost or forgotten invoices. No more waiting weeks on end for payments.

4. Increased Customer Satisfaction

By removing the reliance on phone calls and paper-based documents, you could be saving around two hours each day, making the process much speedier for both the customer and your back-office team. You can manage all administrative aspects of a project on one easy-to-use platform with field service management software.  

Instead of being stuck on the phone for 15 minutes to make an appointment, customers can book online via the portal. You can then allocate the best resource for the job based on set requirements or skills and send your customers real-time status updates. 

When engineers complete their jobs, having filled in the electronic paperwork as they go, the system instantly generates job cards, certificates and invoices to email to the customer or head office. You can also provide your customers with a survey to measure your performance, so you can be sure that they are pleased with the job. 

Not only will your customers be satisfied with the communication, along with the quality and speed of the work, but they’re likely to spend more as a result of the exemplary service.

Win-win.

5. Guaranteed Compliance

Annually, UK companies lose approximately £16.2 billion as a result of injury. In addition to hazards for your technicians, poor compliance can endanger your customers. For example, if your engineer incorrectly installs an electrical system, it can catch fire.

Therefore, it’s critical for any field service business to prioritise health and safety. With a field service management system, you can significantly reduce the risk of accidents:

  • Digitised paperwork: Engineers fill out the forms and paperwork from their mobile devices. You can set mandatory fields within the digital documents to ensure that the workers follow the correct protocols. Engineers can also attach time, date and geolocation-stamped photos, videos and more to the work order as evidence.
  • Geolocation tracking and online timesheets: With a digital record of your engineers’ working hours, you can ensure that they’re not exceeding legal limits. 
  • Scheduling: You can set automatic service schedules for installed equipment to guarantee that they’re inspected at set intervals and are continuing to operate correctly.

By reducing the number of workplace incidents, you’ll have happier staff and customers, your reputation will flourish and your business will grow.

Manage Your Field Service Business Effectively with BigChange

BigChange is the complete job management software system that’s helping field service businesses across the UK to win more work, take control of their operations and deliver winning customer experiences. Bringing customer relationship management (CRM), job scheduling, live tracking, field resource management, financial management and business intelligence into one simple to use and easy to integrate platform.

Want to find out more?

Discover how BigChange field service management software can make your business grow stronger here and arrange a free demo today.

Invoicing is an essential part of running any organisation, but the payment process is often riddled with obstacles and extremely inefficient. From late payments that obliterate your cash flow to arduous, manual processes that leave your Accounts Receivable (AR) team feeling frustrated, outdated payment processes can negatively impact business performance.

However, there is a way to streamline the payment cycle, saving you time and money that could be better spent elsewhere in the company.

With automated invoicing and payment software, everything is digitised and stored on one easy-to-use platform, which ultimately speeds up the whole process and ensures you get paid quicker.

We’ve summarised the most significant benefits that automated invoice processing provides and how it optimises payment lifecycles, enabling you to focus on business priorities instead.

1. Going Paperless

Going paperless isn’t just environmentally friendly, it makes good business sense.

Paperless processing permanently avoids the risk of invoices becoming forgotten about or lost. Instead, you, your employees and your customers can access cloud-based documents any time, anywhere.

Additionally, going paperless enables you to complete approvals directly on the platform. Invoices won’t have to sit, piled on someone’s desk for weeks on end and records of the process are catalogued to save time spent searching through old files.

Removing your reliance on paper, also saves money on storage and logistics costs. Companies with hard copies of invoices need to keep them somewhere for auditing purposes, but eventually, they begin to run out of space and need to pay to store them in an off-site location.

Furthermore, data regulations such as GDPR prevent organisations from keeping records after a certain amount of time. As a result, businesses with boxes of paper records in storage will need to pay employees for the manual labour of sorting through and discarding old records.

By contrast, automated invoice processing eliminates the dependence on paper, freeing up time, money, and office space.

2. Eliminating Repetitive Tasks

For each physical invoice that needs to be processed, someone must input the information manually, print it out, put it in an envelope and mail it off to the customer before filing a copy somewhere in the office.

Repetitive tasks are a morale killer for accounts receivable teams, who currently spend an average of 11 hours manually processing each invoice. When your employees are unhappy, they’re more likely to jump ship, leaving you to spend time and money hiring replacements.

Invoicing and payment software is designed to oust the monotony of payment processing by keeping everything in one place and automating administrative tasks. By alleviating your accounts receivable team of burdensome processes, you can expect to see a significant boost in productivity and motivation.

3. Less Human Error

Imagine this: your accounts receivable team posts an invoice to a customer, who receives it several days later. The customer checks the invoice but notices a mistake – the total doesn’t match up with the original quote.

Not wanting to pay the incorrect amount, the customer calls your accounts receivable department and disputes the invoice. After some time spent going back and forth over the phone, the AR team realises it was an innocent mistake and then has to correct, print, seal and send off the new invoice, which the customer will receive in a few days.

Seems pretty inefficient.

Invoicing and payment software leaves much less room for human error because it automatically generates invoices using existing company data. Fewer slip-ups mean your team can spend less time processing a single invoice and focus on more pressing tasks that will help to grow your business.

Plus, you won’t have to rely on snail mail to send invoices. The software will automatically send invoices to the customer, where they can electronically sign them and issue a payment immediately.

4. Fewer Employee Hours

Your business is bound to go through peaks and troughs of activity. Therefore, it can be tempting to take on temporary staff when your AR team reaches peak capacity to lighten the load.
But recruitment is very costly and time-consuming, especially when you’re hiring non-permanent staff.

Forward-thinking companies invest in invoicing and payment software, which scales as your business does. With automated processes in place, your team will be able to handle invoices much faster, giving them more time to focus on strategic activities instead.

5. No More Chasing

With a lowered risk of human error, immediate invoice generation and a digital record of all documents, wasting time chasing overdue payments can become a thing of the past.

Automated invoice processing organises what was once a slow but chaotic workflow and streamlines it to ensure you get paid by the deadline.

Rather than spending hours on the phone chasing down your customers, business leaders are investing in invoicing and payment software to empower their AR teams. Companies can continue focusing on business priorities whilst their invoices follow a quick, simple online workflow between your organisation and the customer.

Use Automated Invoice Processing to Streamline Your Payment Cycle with BigChange

Create financial documents quickly based on pre-saved line items or automatically calculated job costs. Generate and share invoices, quotes, estimates, purchase orders and credit notes in seconds with BigChange.

Discover how BigChange can make your business grow stronger here and arrange a free demo today.

Efficiently managing your workforce is paramount to making customers happy and growing your business, but it’s notoriously tricky to keep track of everything. Manual data entry and outdated methods cause miscommunication and squander precious time that you and your employees could spend completing more business-critical work.

Yet, small and medium-sized businesses are reportedly spending 23% of an average workday manually inputting data. That’s two hours wasted per day.

Thankfully, with an advanced field service management (FSM) platform in place, you can manage your workforce more efficiently, keep your customers happy and grow your business simultaneously.

In this guide, we’ll explain what FSM is, why efficiency is fundamental in improving field service operations, and what you need to manage a field-based workforce effectively.

What is Field Service Management?

Field service management refers to the handling of overseeing workers, equipment and operations out in the field.

Processes such as job scheduling and dispatching workers, communicating with people on the job, product inventory maintenance, collecting data, compliance and back-office administration are all dealt with through field service management.

However, field service management is complex and multifaceted, making it tricky to manage. Unfortunately, the challenge is only magnified further if businesses use multiple, unconnected systems and slow processes.

As a result, more organisations are beginning to realise the value of a good field service management platform. In fact, statistics show that the FSM market could reach £7.9 billion by 2026 as business leaders turn to software to stay ahead of the curve and keep up with the ever-evolving field service industry landscape.

By managing all business operations within a single, easy-to-use platform, you can streamline the workflow, improve communication and free up more time for everyone to focus on critical priorities.

Increasing Workforce Efficiency to Improve Field Service Operations

Although most field-based service businesses use computers and mobile devices day-to-day, only 51% have adopted field service management software. A quarter of organisations continue to rely on spreadsheets, and the remainder use whiteboards and other antiquated methods to manage their operations.

Tried-and-tested methods may get the job done eventually, but they’re shockingly inefficient.

Modern field service management systems remove the inefficiencies traditional methods create and equip your team with the tools they need to be productive. Here are six ways workforce efficiency improves field service operations:

1. Saving Time

Running a business is already time-consuming as it is. Adding pointless, manual administrative processes and unnecessary phone calls into the mix takes even more valuable hours away from you and your team, making it harder to focus on more essential tasks.

In fact, 55% of small and medium-sized organisations report that insufficient time places an extensive constraint on their business activities.

With the right resources in place that enable your team to schedule jobs, dispatch workers and keep track of activity, the entire workflow becomes more efficient. As a result, field service operations improve since employees, both field and office-based, have sufficient time to enhance the customer experience and complete more work.

2. Saving Money

Companies that spend money maintaining legacy systems are wasting time on inefficient software and losing money in the process.

Ineffectual processes and systems lead to poor communication, which causes several headaches across the entire workflow. Instead, by improving workforce efficiency through a field service management system, you could benefit from the following:

    • Effective stock control and procurement: With greater visibility over your stock, there’s a lowered chance of over-ordering or running out of vital materials right before an important project.

You can also use the data collected over extended periods to analyse your habits and better forecast future requirements. Consequently, you’ll be able to complete more jobs and potentially negotiate better rates with your regular vendors in the future.

  • Higher first-time fix rates: To get a project done on time and to a high standard, you need to send the right person for the job. For maximum cost-saving and efficiency, the worker must also be nearby and have the right tools and materials with them.

If you can ensure that the worker ticks off all the requirements, you’ll save money on travel costs, and first-time fix rates will likely improve, meaning the worker can move on to more projects in a shorter time frame.

  • Remote resolution: Field service management systems are agile and can therefore handle the unpredictability of each day. With access to real-time data, schedulers and managers have complete visibility over their workforce, improving communication with both the workers and their customers, and pre-empting any issues before they become costly.

3. Creating A Positive Working Environment

Studies show that happier employees are up to 20% more productive than unhappy employees. Therefore, to ensure that you’re getting the most out of your workforce, you must keep them engaged with their work.

If your business still relies on outdated, manual systems, you may find a dip in productivity. Teams that have to carry out repetitive, arduous work will quickly become dissatisfied, leading to more errors, poor communication with field workers and, at worst, staff resignations.

Improving workforce efficiency is one way to alleviate the burden on your employees, which in turn boosts field service operations. Arming your employees with the best field service management software allows them to manage the process end-to-end quickly and easily.

With less ‘busy work’ taking up their time, employees will be more motivated to direct their attention to activities that directly contribute to business growth.

4. Enhancing Accuracy

Your employees expect good service, but when you leave your business operations’ fate in the hands of legacy systems and manual processes, you increase the margin for error.

Whether you have to spend time correcting an invoice that doesn’t match the quote, or you underestimated the quantity of materials available to carry out a project, your company’s reputation begins to suffer and projects become delayed.

However, you can easily avoid inefficiencies caused by human error.

Using a field service management system increases accuracy by providing precise data and using pre-existing customer information to populate important documents. Subsequently, you can complete work far quicker, your reputation remains intact and your customers receive better service. Unsurprisingly, customers who receive excellent service spend 140% more on average than those who don’t, so you could also expect higher revenue in the long run.

5. Improving Communication

It isn’t easy to ensure the entire company is on the same page if you don’t have suitable communication methods in place. Banking on texts, paper-based forms and phone calls to get up-to-date information from your field-based workers could cause a plethora of issues.

Traditional communication methods aren’t always the most reliable or accurate, making it hard to understand what’s working and what isn’t. To continuously improve field service operations, you must make sure your communication methods are effective.

Field service management software gives you access to real-time information about where your workers are, how long it takes to travel to locations, and each active job’s status. With complete visibility and exact data coming directly from your workers’ mobile devices, you can plan ahead, complete more projects and mitigate any issues before they impact the workflow.

6. Quicker Invoicing

For many businesses, once a field-based worker has completed a job, it takes approximately 11 hours to process an invoice for the customer manually. However, the payment process can only begin once the technician has submitted their paper-based documents, by hand, to the office.

Fortunately, there is a way to improve efficiency and thus field service operations.

Field service management software digitises forms and automatically pulls through accurate, pre-populated data about the customer. Field-based technicians can send paperwork as soon as the job is complete via their mobile device and include any additional information that may be required, such as photographic evidence.

The immediacy at which documents can be sent between workers, the office, and clients dramatically accelerates the payment process. Customers will be happy that everything was straightforward, and your cash flow will remain steady as a result.

Field Service Management Software: Helping You Manage a Field-Based Workforce

Field service management occurs in various industries, but the fundamental dilemmas it poses are the same. In order to improve field service operations, there are a core set of requirements you must address:

1. Strong Communication

It’s almost impossible to manage a field-based workforce without knowing where the workers are or what they’re doing. Historically, businesses haven’t had the complete visibility they need to make informed decisions. Instead, they rely on phone calls, texts and paper-based documents to maintain communication with their staff.

When businesses use traditional methods to contact their remote workers, it creates an intrinsically sluggish, disorganised and error-prone way of working.

Modern technologies play a crucial role in transforming communications between organisations and field workers with smartphone apps, cloud-based software and GPS tracking. Not only can you access accurate information instantly, but you can use it to streamline current ways of working.

2. Flexibility

Field service operations are truly put to the test when things go wrong. For example, organisations that use outmoded systems and processes may find that they can’t handle delays or errors at speed, leading to inevitable cancellations and complaints.

Real-time data and cloud-based platforms are ideal for improving flexibility. The system tracks everything from the moment you take on a new client right up to invoicing and payment, complete with digital proof of work carried out. Therefore, you can use the information to predict and manage challenges, and communicate them with your field-based workforce, before they become problematic.

3. Performance Monitoring

When your workers carry out all jobs off-site, how do you keep track of progress? Relying on paperwork, phone calls and texts will prevent you from receiving real-time data. Consequently, you won’t have complete visibility over projects, which will hinder your ability to make ongoing improvements to field service operations.

That’s where field service management systems come in handy. With access to continuous, accurate updates, you can monitor your team’s performance and set achievable targets to continue advancing overall efficiency.

4. Smart Technology

There’s a lot of choice for business leaders who are considering implementing a field service management system. However, the challenge lies with finding the right one for your organisation.

To manage your field-based workforce effectively, you must have a technology in place that will improve your current ways of working. Take a look at your existing processes. If they’re creating inefficiencies and losing your business money, you should look for a technology that can tackle those issues directly.

A single, integrated platform, such as BigChange, allows you to manage everything, from prospecting to quoting, job scheduling to service delivery and from invoicing to taking payments, all on one system. It’s never been easier to connect your office, field-based workers and customers seamlessly.

Improve Your Field Service Operations with BigChange

Save valuable time and stay connected to every aspect of your business with BigChange.

BigChange is the complete Job Management Platform that’s helping field service businesses across the UK to win more work, take control of their operations and deliver winning customer experiences.

Bringing together customer relationship management (CRM), job scheduling, live tracking, field resource management, financial management, business intelligence into one simple to use and easy to integrate platform your business can run on.

Want to find out more?

Discover how BigChange can make your business grow stronger here and arrange a free demo today.

Companies that don’t only want to survive, but thrive, in a post-pandemic world will need to innovate and think of ways to stay ahead of their competition. 

If COVID taught us anything, it’s that technology has the power to change the way we work and eliminate a range of roadblocks that have the potential to stand in the way of business. One piece of technology that can revolutionise the way you run your organisation is a CRM (Customer Relationship Management) platform with payment gateway integration.

A CRM streamlines the sales cycle, end-to-end, and speeds up the entire process. Consequently, you can get paid on time, take on more projects and scale your company. 

In this article, we’ll explore the five main perks of using a CRM with integrated payment solutions.

1. Streamline the Payment Process

Time is money, which means that all those hours your Accounts Receivable (AR) team is spending manually processing payments is costing you dearly.

In fact, for the average small-to-mid-sized company, it takes approximately 25 days to process a single invoice manually from receipt to payment. As a result, businesses have to contend with overdue invoices, high processing costs and employees spending their time on long-winded tasks.

CRMs with payment gateway integration speed up the payments process. No more searching through stacks of paper to find the information you need, no more reliance on snail mail to send your customers an invoice and waiting days for their accounting team to handle it, and no more risk of human error that can delay the process further.

Integrated payment solutions allow you to automatically send your customer a payment request via the CRM — where all your other documents are stored — and receive the funds instantly. 

Not only will your AR team thank you for freeing up their time to focus on more crucial tasks, but your cash flow will likely remain more consistent.

2. A More Secure Way to Pay

The National Crime Agency (NCA) estimates that businesses lose around £190 billion to fraud each year in the UK. Being a victim of a scam can cause severe financial and reputational damage to your business, so you must have preventative measures in place.

A good CRM provides an additional layer of security that you wouldn’t get when you process payments traditionally using legacy systems and paper invoices. All payment data is encrypted and transferred securely, significantly reducing the risk of fraud. 

In addition to the added security, a CRM with payment gateway integration can seriously speed up the payments process. 

Rather than taking credit card numbers over the phone or waiting for a cheque in the post before passing them over to your accounting department, you can request a payment from your customer directly through the CRM and receive the funds instantly.

3. Convenience for Your Customers

In today’s digital world, where convenience and speed are king, failure to meet the standard your customers have come to expect is a surefire way to lose business.

Although B2C payments have continued to innovate and provide modern, user-friendly ways to pay, B2B payments have historically fallen behind. However, B2B organisations are quickly realising due to the COVID crisis that their payments desperately need consumerization.

Say you have a customer who is waiting for your invoice to arrive in the mail before they can send you a cheque, but that same customer was just able to complete a near-instant, cloud-based payment for another company. It’s not hard to guess who they would prefer to work with again in the future.

CRMs that have integrated payment solutions vastly improve the customer experience and help maintain your relationship long-term. You can expect far more repeat customers if your processes are painless and consider their needs.

4. Keep Everything in One Place

One of the main benefits of having payment gateway integration in your CRM is that you essentially have a single, central customer database where all the information is correct.

Keeping customer details updated across multiple platforms is slow, destroys team morale, creates duplicates work and increases costs. However, a CRM with payment gateway integration enables your AR team to quickly generate an invoice based on correct, pre-populated information about the customer and accept payments all in the same place.

As a result, you can expect far less human error and mismatched data. With all the time saved, you and your team can focus on more valuable work. 

5. See the Bigger Picture

Integrating your payment processing tools with your CRM will be instrumental in helping you understand your business better, not only financially, but also from a marketing perspective.

Usually, when you acquire a new lead, you mark the source in the CRM. However, if your CRM and payments platform aren’t integrated, it becomes trickier to see the true ROI on each of your marketing channels.

Suppose you want to learn which channels provide you with the most repeat customers, which channels generate the most ROI and which channels attract the most new clients. In that case, it’s essential to employ a CRM with integrated payment solutions, which lets you see financial and client data in the same place.

Learn More about Integrated Payment Solutions with BigChange

Using a complete job management platform like BigChange enables you to stay ahead of the curve.

Create financial documents quickly based on pre-saved line items or automatically calculated job costs. Generate and share invoices, quotes, estimates, purchase orders and credit notes in seconds.

Want to find out more?
Discover how BigChange can make your business grow stronger here and arrange a free demo today.

For mobile workers, compliance checks happen daily. They need to show simply and clearly that they are sticking to industry safety measures, the law, customer requirements, and company best practices. 

The BigChange platform is designed with this in mind, and the tips below will help compliance checks run smoothly.

Mandatory Questions

When setting up worksheets to be completed on-site, simply tick the ‘Mandatory’ box next to any essential questions.

Where you need your mobile workers to complete a check before they start working, if you have one or more mandatory questions, you can set the ‘Completion time for resource’ on the worksheet to ‘Before starting the job’. This requires mobile workers to answer those crucial questions before they can get started on their job.

It’s just one way to keep your employees safe and ensure compliance checks are made on-site. 

Worksheets

Conditional Branching

This makes sure the right questions get asked and don’t get in the way of work. 

It allows you to set up worksheets so that questions are only shown if they need to be, which is important because irrelevant questions cause frustration and waste time in the field. 

Conditional branching has multiple uses. For example, if a frontline worker reports that a certain hazard is present, it can automatically prompt follow ups about the nature of the hazard, and give tailored guidance. If the hazard is not present, the additional questions are not shown. 

Or on a feedback form a customer rating of 1-4 could prompt more questions about why the customer was dissatisfied, while a rating of 8+ could prompt them to leave a brief, written review. 

We hope these tips make compliance easier with BigChange. We’ll be back again soon with more ways to get the most from the system.

At BigChange, keeping customer data secure is a priority. Our ISO 27001 accreditation and independent security testing regime is testament to that commitment. 

However, you also play an important role in maintaining security by keeping passwords secure. With BigChange, your data is encrypted both in transit and at rest, but using the same password for other accounts or responding to phishing emails can put you at risk. 

BigChange’s 2-Step Verification (2SV) – a security feature that requires two pieces of information to authenticate you when logging in – offers another level of protection for your account and data.

While the first piece of information is your username and password, the second is an extra credential that only you will have access to, a dynamically changing pin sent to your phone via the Google Authenticator App. You can even get the authenticator for many smart watches in addition to your phone. It makes sure that even if your password is compromised, your account remains protected.

Extra security layer

We are encouraging all BigChange customers to enable 2SV in the ‘Admin’ panel of ‘My Settings’, on the BigChange system. Hit the ‘Create’ button, and you’ll be shown a QR code that you can scan to set up 2SV. 

For more tips on security, check out our Information Security Report which lays out the best ways to keep your data safe with BigChange.

BigChange lets you automatically send worksheets to customers and save emails in your Notes at the push of a button. Read on to find out how.

The BigChange platform is designed to meet the needs of your business. An important part of that is automating repetitive, manual tasks, so you are free to focus on what matters most. 

Automate Customer Feedback and Confirmation

For example, if you’re looking to get feedback or confirmation from customers, you don’t need to spend copious amounts of time chasing them up over the phone or email. 

By using the ‘Third Party Worksheet’ feature, you can set an email to be automatically triggered by a Note or Job activity. 

This can be useful in a few ways:

  • When you create a job activity, automatically send a worksheet to the customer for confirmation of job details, and include a list of additional services they may need. 
  • When you complete a job activity, automatically send over a survey about how you performed. 

If it’s important to receive confirmation before you start a job, you can prevent work being scheduled until this document has been completed. 

Automatically Link Emails to Contacts Notes

Our next tip is to use the BigChange Outlook add-in to automatically link emails to your Contacts Notes.

The add-in icon is displayed on the ribbon at the top of Outlook, and allows you to seamlessly attach selected emails to your Contacts Notes. You can do this from your desktop Outlook app and Outlook Online. 

If your contacts email you, you can add the email easily to an open Note, or create a new one. 

If previous emails from the same contact have been saved, the add-in will automatically display the relevant Note. It can also recognise the email address and suggest Notes that might be relevant. 

This helps you share information across your organisation quickly, and to store the information where you need it, in one place.

This video has more information on installing the add-in for individual machines and via Office 365 administration. 

We hope these two tips help you save time in BigChange. We’ll be back again soon with more advice.

Introducing a new space for you to suggest and share ideas about how to improve the BigChange system 

BigChange has always aimed to understand the day-to-day challenges faced by mobile workforces, and to develop the solutions that help. 

It knows that mobile workers using the system in the field every day have a great understanding of where improvements can be made. 

The BigChange Ideas Portal is the latest way of letting users get those suggestions heard. 

Users can find the Portal by clicking on ‘Suggestion’ in the Roadcrew tab of the BigChange system. Once there, you can sort ideas by Trending, Most popular or New – or suggest an idea of your own. 

To make a suggestion, just click ‘Add a new idea’. 

Try to explain your development suggestion as clearly and concisely as possible. Other users will need to easily see the benefit to them for your idea to gain traction. To help, we have shared a template: 

As a [your role], I want to [the problem that you face], so I can [the benefit you hope to achieve].

The Portal includes a voting feature, so you can boost awareness of the ideas you feel would help most. You can also subscribe to an idea you want to stay updated on. 

For example, BigChange chose the most popular idea – “Make different job types show as different colours in the schedule” – to develop, and informed users when it was implemented earlier this month. 

Product Director Jonathan Isaacs said:

“For BigChange, it allows us to make better-informed decisions and pursue developments that matter most to our users, for customers, it lets them know their ideas are being heard and acted on. Users can give input on what they would like to see from BigChange, and crucially, receive notifications that let them know we’re listening.”

Saviez-vous que le système BigChange vous permet de personnaliser votre page de destination? tandis que si vous utilisez un système téléphonique basé sur le Web, comme RingCentral, vous pouvez voir qui vous appelle et trouver des liens vers des fonctions courantes dans le système BigChange. Lisez la suite pour savoir comment.

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You can now assign a priority to your Notes – marking them to show which need to be addressed first – meaning you can focus and get to work on the most pressing tasks first.

When work piles up, our first instinct can be to get our heads down and crack on, knocking out tasks as they come through. But not all work is equal, and the more effective business has its priorities in order, working to meet the most-pressing needs first.

BigChange understands this, and wants to make it easier for all businesses to tackle work in the most efficient way. That’s why we’ve added a new function in JobWatch that allows users to prioritise Notes, making it easier and faster to see the most pressing information and to get going.

This feature lets admins create a set of ‘Note priorities’ for instance, High / Medium / Low or Gold / Silver / Bronze. These priority sets can be customised for the various different departments and note types around your business.

Administrators can then apply a priority set to a certain type of note in ‘Note types’ and choose which roles can set or change the priority.

Users can then sort their Notes by priority, to see which need addressing first, or filter so only, say, high-priority notes appear.

View a step-by-step guide to introducing note prioritisation at your organisation below:

Prioritisation of Notes is just another way JobWatch can improve productivity and customer service – and give leaders better visibility of business-critical information, fast.

February 2021 – BigChange’s new ‘Recurring Job Group Templates’ in JobWatch to simplify workflows and make job creation more efficient than ever.

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25 January 2021 – BigChange has released a new ‘Out of Office’ feature in JobWatch to clear up communication as we work from home.

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15 December 2020 – December’s JobWatch update makes job planning, completion and billing even more efficient

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Leeds, 24 November 2020 – BigChange has introduced two new pieces of functionality to JobWatch that will help customers to work more efficiently.

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20th October 2020 – BigChange is pleased to announce the latest version of JobWatch, version 5.13, is now available.

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18th September 2020 – It’s difficult to notice the simple, time-wasting tasks you do everyday. To you, they’re minutes, sometimes seconds, but given enough time they stack up to become hours or days.

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Powerful new functions in the latest update of JobWatch.

BigChange has released BigChange App v5.12, and it includes new features to improve efficiency by reducing time, travel and costs.

Users can now self-allocate jobs which don’t yet have an owner. So workers carrying out a job on-site can access on their mobile a list of other jobs that need to be done at the location.

JobWatch takes into account resource restrictions, such as location and skills, meaning only relevant jobs will be shown. This improvement ensures extra jobs are carried out efficiently on-site without wasting precious time and money with another unnecessary journey. No unallocated jobs at that site but time to spare? Search for other unallocated jobs in the vicinity.

Another key feature of the update is a ‘Save User Signature’ option. Anyone working with JobWatch can now save their signature in Settings and automatically add it to any documents at the push of a button.

This change improves efficiency and creates consistency across documentation.

Remember to update your JobWatch app, as only devices with 5.12 will be able to use the new functions.

See our help site for more information on these features.

Unscheduled jobs:

Resource signature:

Wouldn’t it be amazing if you could manage your mobile workforce in the cloud, all linked beautifully with your Sage accounting software?

With less paperwork and freedom from double-keying from one system to another. You’ll be able to say goodbye to whiteboards and spreadsheets. You’ll be able to schedule work smartly, in a matter of clicks and be able to utilise an easy to use app. Giving your engineers and drivers all the information they need to carry out every task, including risk assessments.

Customers can be informed by text message, letting them know that you’re on your way, while you have complete visibility of everything.

After the work has been completed, industry job cards and certificates are created instantly, and all without a single piece of paper.

Imagine if, as you created the invoice, all the information would instantly be kept in sync with Sage as well as your payments, purchase orders and contacts.

With BigChanges 5 in 1 mobile workforce management software and job management system, you have all this and more.

Discover a truly integrated solution for field service management that combines everything you need to run your business, beginning to end.

The BigChange platform provides you with a CRM so all your customer records and data are secure in one place.

With the BigChange platform you’ll have access to intelligent job scheduling, a mobile workforce app that does everything for your team whilst on the go, live tracking of your vehicles, plus access to the BigChange network that will allow you to collaborate with other subcontractors and businesses.

And the icing on the cake? Seamless integration with Sage, so everything is synced.

Watch the Video:

The power of BigChange seamlessly integrated with your Xero accounting software.

Business owners in the UK and beyond will now be able to manage their workforce, schedule jobs, meet health and safety requirements, and issue invoices, without having to waste time updating their accountancy package separately.

Leeds-based BigChange, which has created a 5-in-1 technology platform for managing mobile workers, has announced a seamless integration with online accountancy giant Xero.

The move promises to eliminate the need for ‘double keying’, whereby information has to be re-entered into separate apps or software packages. Research shows that this ‘double keying’ can lead to workers wasting as much as two hours in front of a screen each day.

BigChange founder Martin Port commented:

“We all rely on technology to run our businesses – and our lives. Apps and software make us more efficient, and remove a lot of the grunt work, allowing us to focus on the stuff that really matters. But when these apps can’t communicate with each other, we are forced to type out the same data over and over, which increases the risk of errors creeping into records.”

“It has always been our aim at BigChange to bring the world’s best software systems onto our platform. I am delighted that Xero, a leading online accounts software, is now available to our users.”

Users are able to access Xero through a user-friendly link in BigChange. Settings are configured directly in JobWatch and contacts, financial information, and invoices are easily and securely passed between the two systems in real-time. This makes it easy to see the most and least profitable jobs, for example.

Early adopters claim that the BigChange integration with Xero has already been a significant time-saver.

Julie Simpson, financial advisor at CRS Communications (Fire & Security specialists) said:

“The integration between Xero and BigChange is fantastic as records are completely synchronised between the two systems, saving us literally hours of time.”

“It makes our job a lot easier and we are much more efficient.”

According to Michael Cairns, managing director at Celsius Plumbing & Heating,

“The BigChange/Xero link not only saves a lot of admin time but on my mobile phone, I can immediately see what’s been invoiced and access our financials, anywhere, anytime. It basically unlocks accounts and opens opportunities to improve the way we work as a business.”

When invoices are created in BigChange’s JobWatch system, the information is automatically passed to Xero.

“The new link between BigChange & Xero is now seamless and instant no delays. We only have to enter data once and that cuts hours off our admin time. Now anyone can raise an invoice we don’t have to rely solely on the accounts team. This system automation will allow us to grow without increasing our back office headcount.”

BigChange not only drives efficiencies, it also allows users to team up through its network. This helps customers to scale, taking on new jobs and trusted tradespeople across multiple geographies with little risk.

According to Chris Langrick, chartered accountant and director of Langricks, the Xero integration will encourage even more forward-thinking accountants to recommend BigChange to their clients.

Chris explained:

“Accountants need to be thinking about how they can advise their clients to use technology to operate in a more efficient manner,”

“BigChange’s Platform offers many advantages and now that financial information automatically ingrates with Xero, it’s even more attractive; a no brainer. In these uncertain times, there has never been a greater need to embrace the benefits of smart technologies like BigChange.”

Watch the Video:

15 April 2020 – Customers can sign-off work remotely or at a distance with this new feature. (more…)

BigChange have recently launched two amazing new Microsoft add-ins for Outlook and Word.

BigChange is now seamlessly intergrated into the Microsoft ecosystem, enabling customers to easily attach email information into CRM notes directly from Microsoft Outlook, or create professional-looking templates in Microsoft Word and simply upload them into the BigChange system.

MICROSOFT OUTLOOK ADD-IN

The BigChange Add-in for Microsoft Outlook is available NOW! Have you downloaded it yet?

This amazing new feature allows BigChange customers to seamlessly attach selected emails and attachments to their CRM Notes – existing or new – without having to leave Outlook.

This ensures important information can be quickly and easily stored centrally against Notes, a must for seamless remote working.

Find out all you need to know about this game-changing new add-in here.

Watch the Outlook Video:

MICROSOFT WORD ADD-IN

The BigChange Microsoft Word Add-in for creating templates is now available for you to download! BigChange customers can now easily create professional-looking templates themselves in Microsoft Word.

Customers can design their own financial documents, Health & Safety Forms, Certificates or standard job cards in Word and use the new add-in to insert the required keywords. The finished document can then be uploaded to BigChange and saved as a template ready to be used in the usual ways.

Where keywords have been inserted, BigChange will automatically populate the datafields upon document creation. It’s as easy as that! You can find out full details of this amazing new functionality here.

Watch the Word Video:

Introducing ‘Job Hints‘ – BigChange has introduced an exciting new feature that will help you schedule your jobs more efficiently.

Have you ever found yourself visiting the same site/client several times over in a short period of time, when you know deep down you could have combined the visits?

When creating or scheduling a job from the back office, it is useful to know of any other jobs waiting to be scheduled, or already booked in, at the same site. This information allows you to combine jobs, therefore reducing travel costs. The JobWatch system now displays this information as a useful hint when creating jobs. As a job is created and a contact is entered, a hint now appears below the contact name detailing the number of scheduled jobs within the next 7 days and unscheduled jobs for this contact.

You can watch the guide video below for full details of this great new feature from BigChange:

We’ve introduced a new feature to help you quickly access information on key features in the JobWatch platform.

Here at BigChange we invest time in ensuring that there are Help Centre articles – and sometimes videos – to take you step-by-step through how our features work.

JobWatch now includes a ‘floating’ Help Button, providing easier access to specifically relevant content. The button has been designed to show content from the help site applicable to the page you are on when you click it, as well as a useful search box.

This great new feature makes it easier for you to access the help exactly when you need it!

Take a look at the video included below for full details of this new feature:

In Jobwatch you can now see both the current and 5-day weather forecast for the location of your jobs.

Does the weather affect when you can complete your jobs? This great new feature from BigChange makes it easier for you to plan ahead for work that can be affected by the elements.

When creating a job, once the contact’s location has been auto-populated, you will now see that a weather icon at the top right showing the current weather at the location is displayed.

BigChange new job weather

Hovering over the icon will display descriptive text, whilst clicking on it will display the forecast for the next 5 days at the job’s location in 3 hourly increments:

BigChange weather display

When you view a job after it has been scheduled, the weather icon displays lower down and shows the predicted weather for the actual date and time of the job.

View the video included below, which showcases this useful new addition in full:

BigChange brings you another paperless solution that allows you to automatically and seamlessly capture digital signatures and customise acceptance information, issuing a digital receipt when the document is signed.

This very exciting new function gives customers the ability to ‘legally’ accept quotations and order forms/contracts through JobWatch.

Upon acceptance of a quote, a “Certificate of Completion” is created and sent alongside the quote, which shows:

  • signatories details;
  • times and dates of receiving/viewing/completing the document;
  • the IP address from the computer which signed the document;
  • the operating system and much more.

All of this ensures a legally binding quotation/contract.

Take a look at the helpful video below, which will explain the new feature in more detail and guide you through exactly how to do it:

Let BigChange save you time by automatically scheduling your follow-on jobs!

This amazing new feature from JobWatch allows our customers to automate the process of booking their follow-on jobs, completely negating the need for manual input. New follow-on jobs can be automatically triggered and scheduled until the work is done, with no additional admin needed.

We know a lot of our customers are already very excited about this new feature! Could it help you? To find out how this feature can start saving you time, take a look at the handy video guide below.

BigChange Audit is a simple yet comprehensive online application which allows companies to self-audit and help directors, managers and employees truly understand the legal responsibilities.

BigChange Audit enables straightforward auditing and visibility of all aspects of transport compliance. Utilizing cloud-based hosting allows for remote visibility of uploaded evidence providing at-a-glance compliance checks and a central repository. In total, BigChange Audit provides a cost-effective solution to address several specific risks within the business.

There are four modules which are relevant to different fleet profiles:

What is the basic functionality of BigChange Audit?

BigChange Audit provides clients with the ability to review their fleet and safety compliance; it encourages ownership of compliance by people doing the job. It’s a cloud-based audit tool which requires uploaded evidence and includes an extensive Knowledge Bank to aid users to understand and answer the questions. Easy to view dashboards also help users see where issues exist and help them to address them. Questions cover both the existence of clear processes and the active use of these processes.

Who is this product ideal for?

All clients running a fleet – where it is a few vans or a major large goods vehicle operator. The product makes visibility easy across a large geographical area. A simple red/amber/green dashboard shows a simple, visible compliance status with the ability to click through to get more detail where issues exist

What tangible impact can BigChange Audit have on your business Health & Safety compliance strategy?

BigChange Audit can make a swift and significant impact on improving a client’s fleet compliance; it can be used by the people involved in the day-to-day management of the vehicles to improve their ownership and understanding of all aspects of fleet risk: safe driver, safe vehicle and safe journey. BCA provides a value-for-money approach to demonstrating that the company is meeting its moral and legal obligations, with a clear audit trail. It is a flexible tool which can also be used for internal and external audit.

What are the benefits to the customer?

  • Audit your operation using up to date guidance and industry best practice standards,
  • Keep depots involved inputting responses and uploading evidence,
  • Complete online visibility of compliance status across the company;
  • Compliance status dashboard, audit trail and action lists accessible anywhere.
  • Make big reductions in miles travelled and time spent auditing your transport operation

BigChange Audit example diagram

What services or onboarding is included in the implementation of BigChange Audit?

We offer client-tailored support from as little as half a day a month; we always do a full training session and ensure that clients are “over the hump” with their initial gap analysis.

How does BigChange Audit meet the needs of growing businesses in implementing industry best practices?

BigChange Audit is an ideal tool for growing businesses as it enables SMEs to punch above their weight against larger competitors as clients can be confident their audits are being done in an up to date, compliant environment. BigChange Audit can also be used as evidence of best practice when clients are bidding for business.

How can customers find out more about BigChange Audit?

Please visit www.bigchange.com or call Ruth on 0113 4571000.

Your customers already use apps everyday to book everything from taxis to takeaways.

Now they can book your services in seconds, with the new on-demand booking app from BigChange. It’s here for all services and all sectors, whether you serve businesses or consumers at home. Begin your own on-demand revolution today!

Want more? Our latest video, Happy Customers; Happy Business is now also available to watch on YouTube.

BigChange

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