In just a few short years, field management has become an integral part of the service industry. Primarily, that’s because the underlying dynamic has changed. Previously, businesses used advertising to attract customers to the store. Today, businesses must go to the customer, and that means field management software for things like document management, fleet tracking, and most importantly for our purposes, dispatching.
There are so many choices as to field service management software which emphasizes dispatching that selecting the right one is often quite a chore. Fortunately, comparison usually falls into the following three areas.
Businesses obtain field management software to upgrade their existing capabilities and not to reinvent the wheel with an entirely new system. Therefore, the new dispatching or other software should be seamlessly compatible with your existing system. Moreover, be sure that your computer has enough available memory to fully absorb the new functions without compromising effectiveness elsewhere.
If business owners must buy a new system or significantly upgrade existing infrastructure, the field management software is not an improvement but an investment. There’s a difference. Be wary here, because many software salespeople will try to push an investment as opposed to an upgrade.
Ease of Use
Most people are not computer geniuses, and many workers, especially older ones, are reluctant to use new technology. Yet if your employees do not fully utilize the dispatching system and instead rely on older methods, the upgrade was a complete waste of time and money.
Do not go too far and acquire a system that is incredibly easy to use but has very few functions. At a minimum the system should minimize downtime, eliminate the need for complicated spreadsheets, and ensure accuracy of order and deliveries.
Find a happy medium with a system that may have a substantial learning curve but is easy to use once it’s in place and employees are used to it. Many software companies offer training or webinars for this purpose. Additionally, stress the system’s benefits to your employees to increase the chances that they will embrace it.
Specifications and Support
Every industry is different. A pest control company’s dispatching needs is almost nothing like a police department’s needs. Whereas the former is basically concerned with getting the right people to the right place at the right time, the latter must perform these functions and also deliver accurate information. Moreover, a police department usually must communicate with fire, medical, and other emergency responders.
The best systems break down from time to time or at least develop annoying glitches. Ideally, the business owner should have a designated human contact within the software company, perhaps a sales representative, who serves as a facilitator. At the very least, a person who has the authority and/or knowledge to address the problem should be rather easily within reach. Online reviews are useful here.
For the best results, clearly define your needs, goals, and budget before you start shopping around. Then, find the system that meets all your requirements, because even if it takes some searching, such a system is out there.
Founder Dinis Guarda
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