To understand capacity planning in a nutshell, and how it can help your business, you need to know what it means when the term refers to “capacity.” Simply put, the capacity of your business is its ability to perform a service. This encompasses all of the resources involved in providing the service, including:
- Parts and materials
- Service vehicles and travel time
- Personnel capable of performing the work
- The capabilities of your facility
- The level of knowledge your company and technicians currently hold
By measuring all of these resources against the demand for your business’ work, you can determine your current minimum and maximum capacity. Capacity planning then comes into play when your business is growing and evolving or you’re looking at how best to grow your business. A proper capacity planning strategy will measure your current abilities against the capacity you will need in order to maintain success over a long period.
Properly developed and implemented, capacity planning allows your business to grow smoothly, reducing the problems associated with a lack of resources, manpower, or time. Much of the time, unfortunately, capacity planning gets shunted aside in favor of more reactionary planning and action, which tends to lead to all of the stuff you want to avoid as a successful business: slow response times, unsatisfied clients, and a lack of resources.
Capacity Planning Without Support Is Doomed
If you take a moment to wrap your head around all the metrics and moving parts that explain how your capacity will change in the next year or more, you’ll quickly note that there is a lot to keep on top of. It’s not just hard to do alone—it’s nearly impossible.
Planning for and reacting to changes in your capacity require that you keep firm measurements of the kind of work your business is doing (particularly noting the services that you provide that are the most successful), the resources you run through on a daily, weekly, and annual basis, the capabilities of your teams—the list could continue for quite some time.
The more important question is this: How can I implement a solid capacity planning strategy without letting anything slip through the cracks?
The answer to this one, fortunately, is very easy. Software development companies that offer field management software to commercial electricians, home improvement contractors, HVACR, and more are all well aware of how important capacity planning is. This is why quality field management software incorporates capacity planning into its capabilities.
The Benefits of Field Management Software for Capacity Planning
You can have your software measure your current capacity, predict your growing capacity, and provide a detailed roadmap on how to develop your capacity safely and correctly. Capacity planning software can help you to determine:
- When to hire new contractors
- When to increase your stock of resources, and what resources you are most likely to need
- When to introduce new equipment or services
360e Makes Capacity Planning Simple & Stress-Free
When your business is developing and growing, it can be exceedingly hard to figure out what needs doing, and when. This is why we developed 360e! Our software was made by contractors. We’ve been in the business for decades, and we understand all of the ins and outs of proper capacity planning.
Interested in finding out more, or looking to start a free trial with 360e? Connect with us on the web now!