Commercial Technicians: Improve Efficiency and Retain Them for the Long Haul
Recruitment and technician retention are two of the biggest challenges pest control companies face, and with good reason -- finding great, reliable technicians can be a challenge regardless of industry, but the recent job surplus has given great employees in the field plenty of opportunities to find work elsewhere if they feel their needs aren’t being met.
Creating a great technician is an investment, and certifying a commercial technician comes at a cost, so suddenly losing one can make it feel like all of the time and money spent educating and training them has gone to waste. Making matters worse, you’ll also suffer a direct loss to productivity as you try to find a replacement, and spend valuable time and resources finding, hiring and training a replacement.
Commercial pest control contracts are lucrative, so they are often managed by the best, most qualified technicians on your team. These technicians become the face of your company to the property managers they interact with, so losing them can be a huge blow to your commercial efforts.
Unfortunately, with unemployment numbers hitting historic lows and job opportunities growing by the day, a great technician with a strong resume has never had more choices. If you’re not careful, you could see some of your best techs get pulled away by another company – in the worst-case scenario, by the competition.
If you’ve got a certified commercial technician you can’t afford to lose, here are some ways you can use technology and mobile apps to help retain and keep them happy.
Save Time with Mobile Notes from the Field
Helping technicians do their jobs faster and more effectively is more than just a way to make more revenue: it’s also an essential part of keeping them satisfied with their job. Commercial customers are generally their most time-consuming stops, so helping techs minimize time spent at the commercial facility without sacrificing effectiveness can go a long way in keeping them happy–not to mention giving them more time to fill in their other stops throughout the day.
Unlike residential treatments which mostly follow the same basic procedures from one home to another, commercial facilities can host a wide array of different challenges and requirements based on both their function and their physical layout. The more the technician knows about the structure before treatment, the better. Many times, this knowledge comes from notes left by other technicians that have serviced the facility in the past.
While traditional service pages often leave some room for notes, this is often not enough to get into detail, which can result in technicians resorting to shorthand that can be difficult to understand for other readers–not to mention the risk of poor handwriting making their notes illegible.
One significant step to try is to introduce ways for technicians to leave comprehensive Cloud-accessible notes that they or other technicians can refer back to for future reference. Allow your best employees to go in-depth with their experiences servicing some of your biggest clients, which serves both as an opportunity for them to feel valued for their insight as well as for them to pass on important customer-specific knowledge to the other technicians on the team.
Not only will this step help keep other technicians servicing the site in-the-know, but it can also help keep specific details that might be forgotten at the front of the technician’s mind. With in-depth situational and structural data available at their fingertips, your best techs will be able to pinpoint problems and challenges within the unique commercial structure they're treating much more quickly to address them effectively.
Constant Access and Support
Even the best mobile phone services can be rendered useless by obstructions in the form of deep basements, thick concrete walls, and large buildings. This is a big problem when technicians are trying to access customer data on an online network while in the field in the middle of a job. The best mobile apps have offline capabilities. Data is transmitted as soon as the tech gets in range, therefore, allowing the office to instantly view the information and the technician to proceed with servicing more customers.
When technicians know they have the right technology tools they need to do their job, they are happier, more efficient, and more satisfied in their jobs. The ultimate result is a commercial technician team that is less likely to jump ship to your competitors.
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