The field services industry has seen dramatic changes stemming from technology over the years. The industry is complex, with a mix of full-time staff, part-time employees, and contractors working independent schedules.
Field service businesses, such as HVAC, cleaning, pest control, plumbing, security and other types of B2B and B2C service providers want to stay competitive while juggling a variety of operational challenges such as booking appointments, routing technicians, call backs, customer communication and more. In order to do so, they need to evolve from manual processes and silo-d systems to ensure a seamless process, end to end.
The Problem Isn’t Unique
This problem of continuously needing to innovate to deliver better customer satisfaction isn’t unique to the field services sector. Many businesses today still struggle with paper quotes, mailed invoices and payments; and an overall lack of digital tools. Businesses in a variety of verticals still struggle to implement cloud apps that truly transform their business.#SmallBusinesses tend to favor hands-on bookkeeping, but it’s doing them a disservice. @NuvemConsulting lays out a few reasons why businesses of all sizes should consider #Salesforce for #businessgrowth: Click To Tweet
Not surprisingly, manual methods of managing operations are time-consuming and ineffective, no matter the size of your business. Business owners, executives, and operations managers have little insight into accurate performance data and, therefore cannot accurately forecast revenue, identify inefficiencies, analyze employee performance, and more. That makes it difficult to improve operations to provide better service and reduce costs. Ultimately, it limits the company from gaining a true competitive edge.
Challenges such as lack of resources and limited budgets often restrict companies from making the jump to the cloud. With Salesforce, however, implementing new technologies requires no hardware investment, fewer IT resources, and the ROI is much easier to prove.
Here are a few reasons you should consider Salesforce for business growth:
Increase Operational Efficiency
The field services industry serves as an excellent example of how technology can bring more efficiency to operations while improving customer service. Field services businesses frequently find scheduling, routing, dispatching, and work order management to be their top pain points. Think of how hard it would be to manage all this well on paper, via email or Excel. Not to mention, there’s no way to provide full visibility to your customers over when they should expect their problem to be fixed. In a field where communication can take the backburner, clarity for your customers could be your key differentiator.
Field service business owners and leadership teams are finding the market to be more competitive than ever. There’s less room for error, including late arrivals, no-shows, or the dreaded “estimated service window” that leaves customers waiting and working around your uncertain schedule. With today’s technology, customers know they shouldn’t settle for this. With the right operational tech, imagine how much your company could stand out.
Salesforce Field Service Lightning helps connect your customer service reps, dispatchers and field workers through a single platform. The Dispatcher Console enables your team to see field workers’ availability within a gantt chart view and schedule service appointments. The mobile app provides all the details of the job to your reps in the field. At the end of an appointment, workers can generate service reports using prebuilt templates that automatically populate with existing data on the work order.
Salesforce Field Service Lightning can even be customized to fit your unique operational processes. It’s one of the key ways businesses are getting long-term value and ROI from their Salesforce investment.
Improve Sales Team Performance
It’s surprising how many businesses don’t have a CRM. Or, maybe they have a CRM, but their sales reps don’t use it to its full potential. Sales reps often think that executive leadership want to implement a CRM to play “big brother” on their performance. However, a functional CRM, such as Salesforce, will give your sales reps the business intelligence and insights they need to close deals faster. It will also provide sales managers with revenue forecasting data they need to manage cash flow, create goals, and project growth.
When used to its full potential, sales teams love Salesforce. These are a few of the key ways it improves sales processes:
- Easy Account Planning: Reps can see all accounts, contacts, opportunities, and events in a single place making strategy development and action plans simple.
- Dashboards: Reps can create dashboards to see their goal progress at a glance in a format that makes the most sense to them.
- Reports: These can be run on accounts that haven’t been visited recently, opportunities, products sold, and tasks they’ve completed for a full view of their successes and misses.
- Easy collaboration & templates: Sales reps can share information with team members and align goals among reps.
- Less Micromanagement: Managers can easily see client history, rep strategy, and pipeline information rather than constantly requesting updates from their reps.
- Email and Phone Integration: Automatically log calls and emails.
Marketing Automation Integration
Lead generation, customer retention and cross-selling are key marketing responsibilities that are here to stay. But, traditional marketing methods such as print, radio, and TV ads, direct mail, trade show booths, cold calling, and other practices have declined considerably in recent years in favor of marketing automation.
Methods that rely on inbound strategies such as website SEO, blogging, social media, and email marketing are the established ways to get your brand in front of the right audience to solve their pain points. Implementing marketing automation solutions, such as Pardot, provides visibility on digital marketing performance and ROI. Integrate it easily with Salesforce Sales Cloud CRM so you can connect your marketing and sales systems — giving you the ever-important 360-degree view of the customer and a leg-up on competition.
In order to remain ahead of competitors, field service organizations must continue to adapt to whatever changes and challenges come their way and focus on new opportunities that can take their business to another level. It’s important for businesses to avoid reluctance in adopting a tech stack that actually makes your operations more human-centric.
Salesforce will simplify the way you generate leads, manage the sales pipeline, and connect with customers. Want to schedule a consultation with one of our Certified Salesforce Consultants? Or just have a few questions? Let us know a little about your needs, and we’ll set up a time to chat about timelines, budgets, and next steps.
This article was originally published on November 18th, 2014. It was updated on August 24, 2020.