If you’re not sure how optimizing service routes could improve your business — picture this.
Your staff is already out in the field for the day when the calls start to come in. One client wants to move his appointment to later in the day. Another wants to change it to tomorrow. An employee is feeling sick and needs to head home early.
Of course, you have to figure out how to keep the day’s work on track for the rest of your clients and employees. So, you put away what you were working on and start reconfiguring the day’s service route.
Obviously, the above situation is not ideal. However, managing your company’s service routes doesn’t have to be such a headache! Automating your daily or weekly routes can save you hours normally spent calculating the distances between customers and the time needed to complete the service.
Businesses that serve many ever-changing customers particularly benefit from optimizing service routes. Read on to discover a few of the many advantages of route optimization.
Optimizing Service Routes Saves Money
The first most obvious benefit to service route optimization is its ability to save you money. When your routes are planned efficiently, you’ll be spending the lowest possible amount on gas for your service vehicles. And, since your vehicles will be traveling shorter distances, you won’t have to replace them as often.
The time you save from having an optimized service route will translate to savings on staff pay. Your staff will be able to complete more jobs in shorter time periods, with less time wasted in between clients. The cost of having someone manually figure out routes and schedules—and then redo them following changes—will also be eliminated.
You and Your Employees Will Be Happier
A huge advantage to using an automated system to optimize service routes is the stress it gets rid of for you. You have enough on your plate already. A service route optimization system takes into account all the details—staff schedules, client appointments, distances, and service times—and easily manages any changes.
Communication with staff also becomes simpler when the service route is clear. There will be less back-and-forth, as everyone just has to look at the automated route to know where they need to be at what time. Your employees may also experience a greater sense of autonomy from knowing the route ahead of time. They might feel more satisfied when they don’t have to retrace their steps.
Finally, having a system that’s easy to alter for vacation and sick days helps everyone feel more at ease.
Boost Customer Satisfaction with More Efficient Route Planning
So, there are tons of benefits to route optimization for you and your staff, but the pluses don’t stop there. Optimizing your service routes allows you to better plan your arrival times at each job destination. Please your customers with on-time arrivals, which tend to reflect positively in customer reviews. You will also save the time you usually spend answering phone calls from clients who are waiting for your team’s workers to arrive.
As an added bonus, many automated systems include real-time tracking and text updates of dispatched workers. If one job stretches out a bit longer than planned, you’ll be able to easily make your customers aware of the delay.
Part of optimizing your service routes includes making sure you’re matching the right technicians with the right jobs. Optimizing your routes helps ensure that each job gets done right the first time, satisfying your clients and building your reputation.
Finally, optimized routes will let you serve more clients in a shorter period of time, so you can impress your clients with quicker response times.
Optimizing Service Routes Helps You Scale Your Business
Maybe right now it doesn’t seem like such a hassle to plan your service routes manually. However, think about what it’ll be like when you expand. Planning efficient routes for a few drivers is hard enough; organizing routes and schedules for many drivers could easily become a full-time job.
An automated route-planning system enables you to scale your business without employing additional managers. Five, ten, or a hundred drivers can be easily dispatched without your intervention, freeing up your time to focus on other areas. There’s no limit to how much or how fast your business can grow when you have the right structures in place to support it!
One Tool Does This and So Much More
ServiceWorks is an all-in-one platform providing service route optimization and many other field service business solutions. Try ServiceWorks for free for 14 days to see the difference it makes in your service routes. In the meantime, check out its other top-notch features, which range from online appointment booking and SMS automation to invoice tracking and QuickBooks Syncing.