A Pair of Shoes Two Sizes Too Small
As any professional commercial contractor will tell you, commercial workflows are not the same as residential workflows. It used to be that commercial contractors were forced to use residential contractor operations software simply because there was no good alternative. You had to force and adapt your business to fit software that wasn’t designed for you. A commercial contractor using a residential field service management software is like wearing a pair of shoes two sizes too small. Sure, you could make it work but not without alot of pain.
But the commercial contractor software market has changed (for the better!). Using the latest in cloud-based SaaS technology, commercial needs are met in almost all dimensions. With operational software built for commercial contractors from the ground up, there’s simply no reason to touch residential-based software. Check out the top 5 ways commercial contractor workflows are different from residential workflows and why you will want a commercial software specific to your business.
Customers Can Have Multiple Locations
We like to say that residential customers are “one to one” – as in, a residential customer will typically have one location (their primary residence) to service while commercial customers are “one to many,” often owning multiple properties requiring regular service. So while you serve one customer, you work across multiple locations. You need to be able to separate each property, but still associate all jobs and projects with that customer.
With a commercial field service management operations platform, you can separate properties easily. This lets you create unique quotes and invoices for that specific property that are then billed to the customer, not the property itself (this is critical!). Technician dispatch and scheduling is also easier because you aren’t assigning techs to a customer, but to that specific property.
Pull-Through Work Quoting
Pull-through work quoting happens much more frequently on commercial jobsites vs. residential. This is a good thing. The commercial customer relies on you to make sure assets are maintained and that risk is mitigated. It’s your job to flag any potential problems early so it doesn’t become a major liability later. That’s why it’s important to have quoting easy, intuitive, and available so that when field service technicians are onsite and they see pull-through work opportunities, they can use the commercial field service management’s connected mobile app to create a quote right on-site.
Since the mobile app syncs with the FSM through the cloud, all approved quotes are immediately added to the customer’s account and attached to the property. This allows techs to capitalize on extra revenue, get the work done, and send the invoice to the office right away.
Commercial Project Management is Complex
Commercial projects have alot of moving parts and as a consequence, alot that can go wrong. Projects contain overlapping and time-sensitive scheduling. You must stick to schedules to maintain the project timeline. This includes budgeting, job costing, and utilization, down to job booking during phases, creating multiple visits, and specifying different techs at the same time. Commercial projects will also include RFIs, change orders, and submittals on a consistent basis plus you’ll need to track, monitor, and approve each as required. There’s a lot of information to keep an eye on because if you don’t, the repercussions are incredibly costly. Only a commercial field service management platform is able to manage this large amount of data effectively.
Asset Management and Tracking
You’re working at scale on commercial jobs. With multiple worksites from a single account, asset management is the name of the game. Commercial field service management platforms make this process easy, from collection to reporting.
Typically through a mobile app, modern commercial software allows field techs to document each asset and history with a few taps on a screen. Snap a quick picture of your data plates and OCR (optical character recognition) will capture make, model, and serial number and output a tidy asset list associated with the job site. The result is an error-free asset list without any manual work.
Cash flow is vital. We all know that historically commercial contracting billing can be slow. But with the right software, you won’t have to wait any longer than necessary to get paid for completed work. With cloud-based field service management operations, completed jobs that are approved by customers in the mobile app are immediately synced within the platform so the office can finalize invoices and send them to customers digitally. You don’t have to wait for paperwork from techs, manual entry into software, finalizing invoices, printing, and mailing them out anymore. Everything is managed in one platform that is already integrated with your accounting software.
Commercial Service Software Designed for How You Work
If you’re not using a field service management software that’s tailored to the commercial customer, you could be losing out on some serious efficiency gains. Our platform is designed with your unique commercial business in mind, so you can deliver a stellar customer experience seamlessly. Plus, our service and project management features keep everyone across your organization on track, profitable, and billing out quickly so you can get paid faster.
Use a commercial contractor software that’s designed for how you work. Check us out today and see how much easier life can be with the right tools for the job.