Are your third-party service providers doing work that upholds your home services brand? Are they showing up on time to customer calls? Fixing the problem on the first visit? How do homeowners feel about your service providers’ scheduling, invoicing, and overall customer service?
Without visibility into the day-to-day operations of your third-party service providers, you have no way of knowing how they’re doing—until you get a customer complaint. Or, you have to wait for your 3rd-party network to update you.
That’s why it’s critical to get real-time data on what your service network is up to. Here’s how to get that visibility, and improve your customer experience, from the instant they call the service provider all the way through the last mile.
Give Your Third-Party Service Providers a Tool They’ll Actually Use
A great field service management platform allows your independent service providers to manage jobs easily, while at the same time giving you greater visibility into the process. You can receive status updates on the service provider’s location or ETA to your customer’s location, their arrival time, when work is completed, job cycle time and more.
But even the most advanced platform won’t help you if your service provider network won’t use it. Here’s how to incentivize your network to use the tool, so you can gain greater visibility into what they’re doing.
Let Them Integrate Their Own Tools
If your service provider network isn’t using their own FSM tool, then they’re probably using pen and paper. But, if they are using an existing FSM tool like FieldEdge or Rossware, then you’ll want to give them a tool that integrates into those systems. That’s because you don’t want to interrupt their workflow and way of working already, you just want insight into their day-to-day. That way your independent service provider can work with the system that they already love while enabling status back to you.
Give It to Them Gratis
Another way to encourage your network to embrace your field service management software is to offer access to their service providers for free. After all, what incentive do they have to use a tool they have to pay for? Giving it to them on the house will let them use the software with their other customers as well, which will boost buy-in.
Look to Your FSM Software Provider For Help
Finally, go with a field service management software provider that has a dedicated engagement team, and a methodology to help make sure the tool is used by your network.
Pro tip: Dispatch has a best-in-class engagement team to help any enterprise onboard their independent service provider network in no time.
Get Automated Insights into Your Third-Party Service Network
Maybe you get all the visibility you need through non-automated communications with your third-party network and your online portal. But what are you doing with the information you uncover? And, is that information accurate and in real-time?
You need to be able to easily access the data and compile reports—so you can develop insights into your business and take the right actions to improve customer service.
An automated platform lets you quickly compile reports on your third-party service network’s compliance, time-to-schedule, real-time appointment status updates, and more. This information gives you a comprehensive view of how your network is performing.
Make Homeowners Your Eyes and Ears
No matter how good your service-provider network management tool is, you can’t see into customers’ homes and watch how the visits go down. But you can offer homeowners a way to provide instant feedback, which will give you insights you won’t get from raw data—or even from comprehensive reports based on that data.
Giving customers a feedback tool, and analyzing the results, does more than give you insights into how your third-party service providers are doing. It also:
● Gives you a chance to improve your business—and your service providers’ businesses as well. Knowing how customers feel about the services they received benefits everyone.
● Boosts customer loyalty. A study in Harvard Business Review showed that customers are willing to pay more for a company’s products later if the company responds to their feedback.
● Saves you money on marketing. There’s no point in throwing money at marketing if your services need improvement, according to an article by the business directory Clutch. Collecting and analyzing the customer feedback sent through your FSM app helps ensure that your brand and its service providers are in alignment with the image you want to project.
Field service management tools are key in getting visibility into your independent service providers—but feedback from actual humans will fill in the gaps and give you a clear view of how your service network is performing.
Give Homeowners Visibility, Too
Your customers can benefit from the same tools that give you a peek at what your service providers are doing. For example, Uber-style tracking shows homeowners when the service provider will arrive, and access to the service provider’s bio and photo helps the customer feel safe when the service provider shows up at their door.
Visibility is crucial for improving your company’s customer service. But if your data is in silos with walls between your organization, your service partners, and your customers, visibility is all but impossible.
With the right tools, you can take the guesswork out of the customer service process. And with real-time data on the most important metrics, you can head off problems before they happen—and delight your customers.
Need some help getting started? Dispatch offers third-party onboarding education, integration with the most common tools you and your service partners are using, an engagement team, and real-time “last mile” data that helps you optimize your process…and focus on growing your business. Reach out for a demo to see how it works.