While securing new business is crucial to any type of contracting business, repeat customers are what will ensure long-term success. The key driver of customer retention is customer service. When you examine industry leaders, you’ll find one constant: the most trusted and successful contractors take customer service seriously. Since customer service involves human-to-human interaction, mistakes happen for a variety of reasons—from bad habits to poor choices. By being aware of the most common mistakes and using field management software to your advantage, you’ll stay a step ahead and prevent costly losses.
Customer Service Mistakes that Contractors Make
- Not obtaining the complete or correct address: How long have your workers circled the blocks along NW Main Street, looking for a building, when they should have been at NE Main Street? Details as simple as complete and correct street names, building numbers, and zip codes have a cascade of consequences when they’re incorrect. Use field management software that all your employees have access to. This will allow your employees to: record and confirm client details, avoid late appointments, late deliveries, and project delays. Prevent mishaps that will prompt a client to look elsewhere for their next project.
- Disorganization and lack of jobsite access: When your company secures a new project, it’s vital to determine right away how workers will access the jobsite. Without this information, your workers will be on the clock, wasting time, as they wait to gain access inside a building. When using field service software to record all project-related details, include in your checklist of questions:
- Who has the key for a lockbox?
- What are the gate or access control codes?
- Who is going to meet your crew at the jobsite? What is this individual’s phone number?
- Do any of these items require a follow-up, such as the project manager picking up a lockbox key in a few days? If so, schedule a reminder using the project management software’s calendar features.
- Time-related misunderstandings: When you schedule a project to begin at 11:00 a.m., but the client thinks that it begins at noon, you can’t bill for the lost hour, but you still have to pay your workers. This makes a project more expensive on your end. Ensure that all parties are aware of scheduled times by confirming them in advance. Use project management software to remind the project manager to call a client a day or two in advance to confirm dates and times. A three-minute phone call demonstrates superior customer service and avoids wasted time.
- Not tracking the full scope of a project: Clients ask for last-minute changes all the time. It’s the nature of contracting work. As such, your company deserves compensation for this work. When an employee fails to track these changes, your firm may accidentally end up doing extra work free of charge. While this might seem nice for the client at first, you may encounter problems if there is no record of the work performed and the client wants to take advantage of the warranty that he thought he had. Field service management software makes it simple for workers to input last-minute changes. Avoiding simple yet costly mistakes requires providing your employees with adequate training and customizing the software so it prompts employees to confirm the scope of the work provided.
- Incomplete or inadequate information: When a project manager is out for a day or more and someone else has to cover, incomplete or poor project notes, or a lack of access to project notes, are detrimental for a project and customer service. They lead to misunderstandings, rework, frustration, delayed payment, and increased costs. Using a comprehensive CRM system that allows employees to track project details, record notes, and keep all relevant information in one easy-to-access place will keep your team on top of their game. CRM systems will help you keep your customers happy, even when someone is out of the office.
Great customer service starts by giving your employees the tools they need to succeed at their jobs. The field management software created by 360e allows your workers to manage customer relationships, projects, expenses, schedules, inventory, notes, and more from one simple-to-use dashboard that your team can access from any Internet-connected device. 360e is fully customizable, so you can provide your employees with the exact tools they need to stay organized and ensure an outstanding customer experience. Get in touch with 360e today for a complimentary demonstration.