FIELDLOCATE IS A GAME CHANGER FOR ALWAYS PLUMBING
Based in Alberta, Canada, Always Plumbing & Heating covers customer needs from Sherwood Park to St. Albert. The business has been growing since its beginning 16 years ago. Eliminating paperwork by using FieldLocate’s cloud based field service management software and mobile application has played a major role in their growth.
“We wanted the ability to track everything from one central system,” recalled Managing Partner, Cam Haakenson. Always Plumbing started using FieldLocate just 2 months after viewing the product during a Lennox dealer meeting in Las Vegas. Before implementing FieldLocate, one person tracked service calls from beginning to end. “That person can now focus on another area of the business since FieldLocate tracks call and appointment history.”
Before using FieldLocate, Always Plumbing relied on Quickbase and status calls with their technicians. “The system was clunky,” commented Cam. “Since implementing FieldLocate, a calmness has come over the office. We no longer have to scramble to schedule new appointments. We know where our technicians are out in the field and they’re prepared when they arrive to appointments.” Always Plumbing also tracks parts used on their trucks which has reduced the number of part run trips to suppliers.
Scheduling efficiency has improved and the business is completing an extra 3-4 jobs per day. “We can tell when a technician is finishing up a job on the schedule board. So when an extra call comes in, we know we can book it,” said Cam.
Using the map view scheduler, technicians drive to their first appointment without checking in at the office. “It was costly to have 15 technicians waiting in the office for their first call,” recalled Cam. “Now, we can schedule jobs based on proximity, so technicians can drive to their first appointment directly from where they live after having breakfast with their family.”
Using the Unscheduled appointment feature, Always Plumbing can track maintenance appointments for new installs. “We know when we install a new product, it will need service in one year. We can add the new appointment to the unscheduled list and notify the customer in 11 months to schedule the appointment.” This practice keeps appointment from falling through the cracks and keeps the business busy throughout the year. “We can keep our technicians working year round.”
Out in the field, work orders used to be written on carbon copy forms which had to be processed back in the office. Now all work orders are completed using the FieldLocate mobile application. Appointment history and invoices are automatically tracked back in the office—saving the company around $2,000 per month in labor costs.
One feature Cam couldn’t live without is the ability to invoice from the mobile device. This features cuts down on paperwork and the invoice is saved back in the office. “We don’t have to worry about the tech losing an invoice,” says Cam. “It also protects us against any customer discrepancies. Should an issue arise, we can review the appointment history for proof or adjust if there was an error in billing.”
“We use the mandatory checklist feature for hazard assessments which is saved in FieldLocate. So if we ever had a safety audit, the information would be easily accessible.”
FieldLocate can track equipment within the account record. The technicians can take photos of faucets, hot water heater numbers and record serial and model numbers in FieldLocate. “When a customer calls in, we know the exact type of equipment they have so the technician comes prepared with the proper parts to fix the problem.”
Another way Always Plumbing improves customer service is by sending customer surveys automatically after each appointment. “We get a lot of good feedback from our customers.” The surveys also serve as an opportunity to gain followers on social media channels. “By placing social icons on our surveys and invoices, we’ve doubled our Likes on Facebook.”
In addition to the revenue by job type report, Cam likes to run the Revenue by Lead Source report to see if their marketing efforts are paying off. “We can attach that revenue to advertising to see if that marketing effort is working instead of guessing.”
By switching to FieldLocate, Always Plumbing has improved efficiency in the office and in the field with real-time visibility into the day’s schedule, location of their techs, and revenue sources. “It’s changed the way we do business,” concluded Cam.Cam Haakenson, Managing Partner
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