Practical Job Management Tips to Improve Competitiveness
Customer delight is a key pillar of business success. There is no denying that a business must be customer-oriented. But many of them ignore their employees, who are also their internal customers that engage with the end-customer. Effective job management improves their productivity and keeps them happy. Happy employees translate to better enterprise efficiency, satisfied customers, and increased profits. Here are ten tips to enhance your competence through effective job management.
1. Maintain a skills database
Effective job management requires matching the right employee with the right task.
Some jobs require niche skills, while others require a certain level of experience or expertise. Most businesses have high-paying clients on their priority list. Therefore, novice technicians suffice for basic tasks.
Many enterprises lack a proper system to match jobs to their technicians’ skillset and go by the scheduler’s hunches. ReachOut job management software enables enterprises to develop an employee skill database. The database documents each employee’s skillset, experience, training, and competencies.
2. Automate job scheduling
Job scheduling is a complex exercise. The scheduler has to factor in too many considerations. For example, the situation changes by the minute, as clients change their requirements or technicians call in sick. Scheduling mistakes result in employees working double shifts or on holidays.
ReachOut’s automated job scheduling streamlines the field agent’s jobs. The algorithm matches the field agent’s skills and assigns an apt technician for the job. The algorithm also considers other factors such as already assigned work orders, weekly off, and location.
Consistent job scheduling enabled by ReachOut’s automated tool offers the following advantages:
- Avoid clopen or close-open shifts to the extent possible. Clopens means an employee working in the closing shift of a day, followed by the opening shift of the next day.
- Make it easy to swap and change shifts, an inevitable part of field operations.
- Flag employees who indulge in shift abuse.
3. Keep overtime on check
Sometimes, enterprises make employees work overtime during a crisis or in times of unexpected rush. It is advisable to discourage overtime as a regular practice. Overtime costs extra, eating into profits. It causes fatigue and stress among the workforce, decreasing productivity. Studies link overtime to ailments such as heart diseases and diabetes.
ReachOut’s automated job scheduling software keeps overtime in check.
- Optimal allocation of work shifts reduces time wastage and eliminates the need for employees to work extra hours.
- Custom reports identify trouble spots in the shift schedule, making it easy for managers to rectify the situation.
Identifying mistakes or abuses is hard in manual schedules.
The spin-off benefit of keeping overtime in check is a healthy work-life balance for technicians. Employees may plan their personal lives around their work shifts. Employee morale and commitment get a boost.
4. Make dispatching proactive
Like job scheduling, dispatching also entails coordinating multiple variables. The enormous demands and stress on the dispatcher’s mental faculties cause mistakes.
Leverage ReachOut’s automated dispatching capabilities to:
- Ensure the technicians go to the work site equipped with the right tools and spare parts. Integrated quote, work order, and inventory management software make explicit the tools and spares needed for a job.
- Plot the best routes to the worksite. This ensures the technician spends less time on the road and more time working. Their productivity improves, boosting both customer satisfaction and employee morale.
5. Sync the inventory suite with field service tools
Field service efficiency depends on increasing first-time fixes. A technician leaving without completing the job reeks of unprofessionalism. A technician scheduling a revisit for want of spares or tools results in considerable waste. A revisit takes away the time to serve another client and wastes fuel. The delay and hold-up put off customers.
ReachOut offers connectors to link the field management suite with inventory software. An integrated suite schedules the work only when there is the availability of spares.
6. Track the schedule of field agents
ReachOut field management suite allows tracking field agent movements in real-time. It offers several advantages.
- Supervisors keep a close tab on technician movements and intervene promptly when any problems emerge.
- Managers gain greater control over operations. Hitherto, the spread-out nature of field service stifled managers from exercising proactive control.
- Customers track the movement of their assigned technician live with ETA. This assures them and also reduces a load on customer support. An intelligent algorithm learns from the movement data and refines estimates.
- Geofencing capabilities make explicit the time spent at a place, making billing easy. This option also automates timesheets.
7. Deploy mobile apps for field service staff
Mobility unlocks many possibilities for field service staff. It enables:
- Live tracking and communication with the head office, customers, and other stakeholders.
- Shift information, such as tasks, customer information, special instructions, and more.
- Notifications and reminders on upcoming work orders. For instance, a client may cancel the work, or another technician may call in sick. Prompt, transparent intimations of such forced shift changes eliminate confusion. It makes the technician mentally prepared to face the contingency.
ReachOut field management app improves productivity and efficiency manifold.
8. Track time sheets automatically
Tracking employee timesheets is integral to job management. However, manual timesheets are confusing, mistake-prone, and messy. Time tracking through the field service app delivers multiple benefits.
- Payroll tasks become automatic and accurate
- Easy to bill clients on a per-hour basis
- Reduce administrative costs
9. Have seamless collaboration channels
Often, field technicians get stuck because of a lack of real-time communication options. Telephone calls or even generic chat tools are not always reliable. Such options cause data silos and version confusions. Ad-hoc measures cause confusion and delays and stifle productivity. Novice technicians need help upon encountering complex jobs.
ReachOut’s integrated field management suite co-opts robust collaboration options that:
- Connect the field technician to expert remote technicians in real-time. Equipping technicians with the latest AR tools enables them to make an effective fix. The AR goggles offer hands-free annotations.
- Offer field agents access to the needed documents. They may access the work order, download inspection forms, generate invoices, upload reports, and do more. The app automates data collection and ensures stakeholders get the required information.
10. Institute proactive human resource practices
A sound and proactive HR policy keeps the field workers motivated.
Have a clear policy for vacation and sick days. Institute a system for employees to track eligibility and avail it easily. Deploy sufficient employees to cover for employees on leave.
Conduct proactive performance management and track the performance of field agents. Identify trouble spots, and intervene.
Offer skill enhancement training. As competition intensifies, skilled technicians come at a premium. Therefore, investing in training is a sound investment in its own right.
ReachOut offers best-in-class APIs and connectors to sync third-party training and HR modules to the field management platform. The most effective job management keeps things simple. The interventions run unobtrusively without adding to the workload of already busy technicians. ReachOut job management software equips your supervisors and service managers with all the tools needed to effectively manage your field agents. Contact us to know more.
ReachOut: Inspection & Work Order Management Software
Do you still use paper or Excel spreadsheets to manage your service business? ReachOut is a web and mobile solution for companies to schedule, dispatch and deliver inspections, work orders, ticketing and more.