Most of the time when you hear media commentary on technology, particularly in the startup and software space, it is talk about technology as a disruptor. We hear over and over again that Amazon is a disruptor for local bricks and mortar stores, eBay when it started out was a disrupter for both retail and local second hand markets & trunk sales, more recently AirBnb is disrupting the accommodation industry, and the big disruptor of the day, Uber, is totally disrupting the taxi industry.
Field service reps are in front of your customers more than any other person in your company. They have intimate knowledge of your clients’ wants, needs and desires. They even know the name of the janitor. So why not have them up-sell equipment or offer supplies?
As always, we’re involved in loads of industry related events on the calendar. Whip out your diary and jot these down.
As you may already be aware, simTRAC recently introduced a new ‘Plug & Play’ tracker, the SX7.
Despite it being cheaper than the traditional hard-wired trackers (including no installation fee in most instances) they’ve not yet become our highest selling unit. Most customers are still opting for the traditional hard-wired version.
We’ve identified the primary reason for the shortfall in popularity as businesses being concerned that if the unit only takes a second to install, it may be just as quick to uninstall and that once removed, the loss of power means a loss of tracking. That is no longer the case.
For our Australian clients
The Australian Federal Budget 2015 delivered by Treasurer Joe Hockey announced a series of key surprises which will allow small business to work smarter and more efficiently with new technology.
Instant Asset Write Offs For Depreciating Assets that cost less than $20,000. This ruling came into effect on May 12 2015 through to June 30 2017. Prior to this, small businesses were eligible to claim an immediate deduction off the cost of assets purchased for business purposes less than $1,000. The threshold of $1,000 will revert back after June 30 2017.
A White paper by Alun Bain
“Monash University conducted a 12-week study of fully-laden 68 tonne B-Double road trains. The results showed that simply by using eco-driving techniques a 27% reduction in fuel consumption was achieved. The techniques used included anticipating traffic flow, skipping gears when changing up, changing gears at lower engine revolutions, and braking less forcefully and less often.”
I recently read the above statement on the Australian government’s Energy Efficiency Exchange website (eex.gov.au) and it made me think about how in business, we are often looking for opportunities to make big savings, boost productivity, increase profit margins and improve customer service and satisfaction; yet we often forget that we don’t necessarily require huge adjustments to influence the change we desire.
Often we’re asked for recommendations on what devices to roll out to field staff. While we prefer not to recommend any one device, the following article may shed some light on how to go about making an informed decision.
The hardware is but one element of the equation. Consider the operating system, the apps, policies on how they’ll be used and managed, not to mention training. You may even be considering they bring their own. Before you take the leap and send those little handheld expenses out to the brutal world of the tradesman, take the time to factor in the following considerations.
Having the skills to perform the work is no longer enough to land a job in the trade services industry. In fact some businesses have too much work to handle yet they can’t find technicians with enough service skills to be eligible for a job.
As a field service technician, I wear a lot of hats. I’m an inventory specialist, company vehicle administrator, laptop analyst, customer complaint specialist and manager dump-valve. On top of all that, I have to install, troubleshoot, maintain and repair the equipment that is my primary concern. I’ve often questioned my own sanity as to why I’ve spent thirty years putting up with it all.