Over at Contractor in Charge, they use a variety of applications to ensure that their call center for plumbers and electricians can handle calls, book services, dispatch urgent jobs, and even provide bookkeeping. As an answering service for electricians and plumbers, the Contractor in Charge professionals have become experts in finding the right CRM and scheduling software.
Here are the areas they have found to be the most vital:
Job Management in Scheduling Software
Does the software provide a clear start-to-finish path for individual customer cases as well as larger projects? The pros over at Contractor in Charge say that this is the number one thing to look for in CRM and scheduling software. It is the foundation on which the rest is built.
“By implementing a powerful, easy-to-use CRM platform, your organization can help eliminate friction, ensuring your employees stay better connected and coordinated with themselves—and with your customers.”
This is another vital area, especially for an answering service for electricians or a call center for plumbers. Are options for customer follow-up integrated into the system? What about if they have more than one request or requirement? Can the software handle when additional tasks or changes are necessary?
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Are documents easy to access and utilize? How is document storage handled? Can everything be pulled up easily when required? At Contractor in Charge, they note that documentation is an essential part of business. Make sure that your CRM software doesn’t fall short when it comes to this crucial component.
Timesheets and Payroll Reports in Scheduling Software
Make sure your CRM integrates HR with what your employees are doing. It will save time, extra steps, and money.
Job Costing and Pricebook
Do your employees have easy access to job costing tools within the software? Will they be able to create estimates and answer customer questions? This is particularly important when it comes to scheduling. People who call into an answering service for electricians or call center for plumbers, such as Contractor in Charge, are more likely to book when they know how much a service is likely to cost them.
Can purchase orders be made without leaving the software ecosystem? A fully functioning CRM should have the option already integrated.
Image credit: Christina Morillo
Multi Department or Location Scheduling Software
If your team is spread across several locations or in the field, will they still be able to contact each other and fully access the software in real-time? If you have an answering service for electricians, can the call workers easily provide information to the electricians when they are out on the job? The experts at Contractor in Charge highly recommend making this a priority.
Are there mobile apps and ways of accessing the program when in the field? Will technicians be able to quickly access the customer information they need when outside of an office?
Image credit: Emmanuel Ikwueg
Third-Party Software Integrations
Can your currently used software be integrated into the CRM and scheduling software that you are looking at? Do they already have options to do so, or will it include costly and time-consuming customization?
Accounting Software Integration
Last but definitely not least, will you be able to seamlessly pull numbers from the software and integrate them into your accounting? The less manual shuffling of data from app to app, the better. Make sure you get software that will save you time and work instead of creating an additional task.
One last but important piece of advice:
“Before choosing a CRM, ask for a live demo session, where an agent shows you how the CRM operates and answers your questions about the CRM system.”
– US News