In this blog series, we will explore different mobile workforce management solutions, including what the solutions do and why your organization might want them. Our first post reviews the scheduling features.
At first glance, scheduling sounds self-explanatory. In many ways, it is, but a mobile workforce management (MWFM) scheduling solution can do many things. Every mobile workforce management system is different, and what might be ideal for one company may not be useful to another, depending on a variety of factors. It is important to evaluate your current and future needs before choosing the right MWFM vendor. Without further ado, here is what a scheduling should could include:
A scheduling solution should enable assignment of jobs. To make things work more smoothly, look at MWFM systems that can identify and understand different technicians’ skills. From there, the system can make educated assignments based on the skills a job might need. Some MWFM systems will also reschedule jobs based on new jobs or jobs that take longer to complete than anticipated.
An organization might want assigned jobs in order to optimize a workforce. Without an adequate scheduling solution, organizations lose out on dynamic, adjustable scheduling that streamlines dispatching processes. Not only can automatic assignments make technicians and dispatchers more efficient, but organizations can also save money by trimming the number of missed service level agreement commitments due to late arrival times or inappropriately skilled technician dispatches.
Vacations, Sick Days, Overtime Allowances, Etc.
A scheduling solution could also take into account technician vacations and sick days as well as company overtime allowances and other time-based constraints. Imagine receiving suggestions or updates to a schedule on a stressful day when your best technicians are on vacation or already booked. MWFM systems with good scheduling capabilities minimize that stress and let you continue on with the day.
Enabling Customers to Schedule
If efficiency and cost-effectiveness aren’t enough, consider how MWFM scheduling solutions could help you increase customer satisfaction. Many of us have heard the generalization about cable companies taking care to remind customers they may or may not show up during a 12 hour period. For many of us though, time is as valuable as money and making sure the service provider can fit a service into a prescribed time is important. Some MWFM scheduling solutions will allow customers to schedule themselves, allowing them to choose days and times that work best for them.
The benefits are obvious—as long as your scheduling system can already account for new and incoming service requests, available technicians and skillsets, as well as vacation and overtime, you have an opportunity to optimize your schedules to ensure customer satisfaction. Service is the great differentiator, after all.