Live Tracking and ERP Data Increase Benefits of Field Service Software



Efficiency and Cost Savings are Natural Outcomes of Powerful Field Service Management Software

Communication and the availability of information drives field service delivery. The more interconnected the process is, the more the team can make informed decisions. They can take action where needed, whether it’s in dispatch oversight or quoting a new opportunity.

We also recognized that organizations depend on processes that usually take time to complete. Information is requested and delivered between roles, costing money in overhead and inefficiency. Simply pushing the process to “go faster” isn’t the answer, we realized. Empowering the people to do their jobs with greater access to information and effectiveness in their communication is. Access to data in real-time provides several key benefits:

  • Data availability leads to fast customer decisions and transactions
  • Data availability keeps the management team and techs aware and communicating in real-time
  • Data availability reduces the time consumed by traditional process elements

In the past, the passage of time was essentially part of the process. It allowed siloed departments to slowly process and transfer information. Effective operations needed experience, information, judgment, and coordination, but data transfer took all the time, limiting advantages from:

  • Eliminating delays
  • Avoiding missteps
  • Capturing potentially lost opportunities
  • Ensuring that customer satisfaction issues are resolved, and promptly
  • Proactively managing human resources and material availability
  • Conveniently and accurately monitoring project progress and issues 24/7
  • Improving quote speed and accuracy

Specific Time and Cost Benefits of Field Service Software Drawing the Team Together


The Customer Has Direct Visibility and Input Into the Field Service Process

Organizations have gradually opened up over decades, moving from a central switchboard in monolithic organizations to direct phone contact with departments and later adding email. One of the key benefits of modern field service software such as our FieldDirect is giving the customer direct access to the process. Instead of working with their contacts in the organization, they simply access the web portal and check order status, submit new orders, and renew contracts themselves, instantly.

With direct access and updates, they understand that they’re dealing with a transparent, accountable service provider. This dynamic, responsive relationship saves time and cost for both the customer and service organization and gets the work done right.

Field Service Technicians Hit the Ground Running Each Day with Live Information All Day

With live information and scheduling, field service technicians don’t have to drive in or even call in at the start of the day. Techs can start the day with a clear view of their schedule, GPS directions to customer facilities, and easy communication with dispatch and the rest of the team. They also don’t have to call in on arrival at each customer location, because GPS tracking automatically updates their location and notes when they have arrived at the customer location.

FieldAccess keeps them updated with everything from work orders to dispatch schedule updates, so they can be efficient and effective on the job. Technician activity data including location, job status, and results are communicated back in real-time. When the technician reports that the job is complete and the customer is satisfied, billing-related activities are activated without delay.

Service Organization Dispatch Can Orchestrate and Monitor a Busy Day in Real-Time

Real-time data updates let dispatchers do what they do best, decision making. Field service software provides efficiency and cost savings benefits not only for the dispatcher but for the technicians who get fast, accurate direction to keep them on track.

With GPS-based tracking, live project updates, and other streams of data, dispatch has quick visibility into the field service organization’s operations. FieldDispatch presents the information in a flexible and concise format, providing the tools dispatchers need to quickly drag-and-drop priority work, reschedule appointments, and arrange other activities as needed. updates flow to management’s and technicians’ applications so they’re always in the loop.

Management Has Full Access to Reports, Details, and Process Features While On the Go

One of the many challenges of dynamically managing field service organizations is ensuring that solutions are being provided where needed, and resources routed where they’re most effective. When it takes time to get information, the uninformed manager can make decisions that waste time and money, lacking awareness of project status changes such as part availability or customer accessibility.

Our FieldGateway portal provides functions for all levels of management including timesheet approval, access to management reports, and quick technician GPS info when handling customer queries about arrival time. With the organization’s operational information live on a single web gateway, managers can take the big picture approach to decisions and make sure key projects are on track.

ERP Integration with Popular Software Keeps Data Flowing and Up to Date

The heart of the modern “digital transformation” of organizations is versatile and timely access to centralized information from an ERP database system or other resources. Most field service organizations base their operations on ERP, so connecting the dynamic features and benefits of field service software to a company’s ERP system is essential. It puts them “on the air” with information flowing and being compiled without delays.

Our field service software works with existing ERP-based systems and extensions, keeping the company’s existing information infrastructure as the focus. Security is preserved: the technologies that enable this flow also manage access and provide necessary data protection using modern data security techniques.

Full Project Status and Details Are Available While Mobile

Field service project managers excel when they have up-to-date data on project costs, activities, and progress. They can identify where their attention needs to be focused to keep the project on track and on budget. From current labor and materials costs to drone video and site pictures, on-demand project information adds energy to project management.

FieldProject software also provides on-the-job status reporting with mobile form-based data entry. As with much of the field service process, adding real-time data updates cuts the high costs and delays of communicating to acquire information. With current project information from the field already on hand, managers can make cost- and time-saving decisions with confidence.

Fast Capture of Business Opportunities with Accurate Quotes on the Spot

Why wait to bid on new or add-on business? Field service technicians are often on location when customers realize they have requirements for further services. Instead of responding with a vague “our people will get back to you,” the technician or anyone else in customer contact can take advantage of integrated quoting software.

When team members capture the moment with an instant or expedited quote based on related information already available in the ERP system, everyone benefits and saves time and money. The entire field service organization from the front line to the back office is connected by FieldQuotes for an effective quote response. Fast, accurate quotes help maintain customer loyalty and gain additional business.

Infrastructure Based, But Not Infrastructure Independent

When relying on the benefits of field service software, it’s important to have a way to keep business moving when the network goes down or other infrastructure issues arise. Our software is designed to keep the benefits of field service software in effect even when the supporting infrastructure that the team relies on has downtime.

As soon as resources permit, real-time updates resume, and the team automatically re-syncs. We recognize that the connectivity that powers mobile applications can have transient outages. FieldConnect has an offline mode that helps the field service delivery team to continue operating while connectivity is lost.

Keeping the Personal Touch in the Process

Integrating the workflows and data flows of a field service operation using the benefits of field service software doesn’t automate the personal touch out of the process. What it does is make sure everyone on the team is informed and on target in meeting customer needs. That removes a significant burden from daily activities and allows team members to communicate ideas, respond to customer questions and requests, and maintain team relationships without being distracted by maintaining routine information flow. Even when success pushes the team to new heights, they won’t be swamped by increased overhead.

Time and Cost Benefits of Improving the Field Service Delivery Flow

Many field service organizations rely on telephone contact and paperwork to coordinate activities and update technician and project status. These traditional processes have built-in overhead and delays that limit the effectiveness of the team in meeting customer needs. This is especially true in an online, B2B, interactive business world. The main benefits of field service software like our FieldConnect include helping the entire team pitch in to keep customers informed, satisfied, and ordering more project work. By connecting the team and cutting process overhead from the field service organization’s workday, field service management software can save time and money through naturally efficient daily processes.



8 Fundamental Field Service Metrics to Track That Will Give You the Results You Want

To keep your business on the right track, it’s crucial to evaluate its performance on a regular basis. This allows you to measure your business’s successes and failures. By keeping track of how well your service company is doing, you can identify any changes you need to make to your business plan. This enables you to recalibrate your goals or set new ones as needed.

Tracking field service metrics is one of the most effective ways to stay on track with your goals. Field service metrics give you a complete picture of your company’s overall performance and profitability. If you’re dedicated to your business’s growth potential, utilizing the right metrics can help you make meaningful progress toward long-term success.

However, it isn’t enough to simply choose random metrics to evaluate your company’s performance. You need to make use of the right key performance indicators (KPIs) to measure your growth as accurately as possible. Here are 8 of the most common KPIs that are critical for lasting success.

Start Tracking Field Service Metrics to Boost Your Business’s Success

1. Average Repair Time

The first field service metric to track is average repair time. This refers to the amount of time it typically takes your technicians to perform an onsite repair. There are numerous factors that impact this metric, such as the distance to the client’s home and the complexity of the repair. The purpose of measuring average repair time is to give you an idea of how long a repair job takes in the majority of cases.

If you’re unhappy with the results when tracking field service metrics, there are several steps you can take to reduce repair time. Be sure to provide your technicians with adequate resources, supplies, and technology to facilitate the job for them. It’s also crucial to ensure that they have access to the right training and education in their industry.

When scheduling calls for repairs, try not to overwhelm your workers. If you cram too many jobs into a single day, your techs may end up sacrificing quality for quantity. The key is to optimize efficiency while continuing to provide your customers with the high-quality service they expect from you.

2. Average Job Cycle

While the first metric describes how long it takes to perform a single repair, this metric refers to the total amount of time it takes to complete a full job cycle. A standard job cycle typically includes the following elements:

    • Initial dispatch call
    • Scheduling
    • Servicing
    • Billing

There may be other steps involved in your own process, so be sure that everything is covered when analyzing this metric. The key benefit of evaluating your average job cycle is boosting efficiency. By understanding how your company operates during a typical cycle, you can identify any weak spots and rectify them going forward. This metric also gives you the opportunity to pinpoint your strengths and build on them in the future.

3. Average Response Time

When tracking field service metrics, it’s crucial to take average response time into account as well. With this metric, you can assess how quickly it normally takes your techs to answer calls. Customer service is a critical ingredient in your company’s success, and track average response time clues you into how well you treat your customers.

The faster you respond to calls from clients, the more jobs you can ultimately fit into one day. This is essential to boosting your revenue in the long run. In addition, scheduling jobs more efficiently allows you to keep your technicians on track, which helps boost customer satisfaction.

To reduce your average response time, be sure to categorize each customer call based on priority level. While every call is important, not every request will be urgent. Taking care of your most pressing needs first will help you accomplish more in less time. You may also want to consider implementing auto-responses to keep your customers occupied before speaking to a real human.

4. First-Time Fix Rate

high first-time fix rate as a plumberYour company’s first-time fix rate indicates the total percentage of jobs that your techs complete after one visit. Although it’s ideal to resolve a job on the first try, there are numerous factors that may prevent this from happening. Missing parts, inadequate skills, incorrect diagnoses, poor scheduling, and ineffective communication are just a few of the many obstacles that might cross your path.

While a few mishaps here and there are inevitable, it’s important to do what you can to prevent them from happening. By equipping your techs for success, you can minimize the number of problems you run into and maximize the number of victories.

One of the best things you can do to increase your first-time fix rate is to provide your techs with the proper training and equipment. A skilled and experienced technician should be fully prepared to tackle almost any kind of problem they encounter, whether it’s a clogged drain or a dirty furnace filter.

Moreover, effective communication should be one of your top priorities when tracking field service metrics. When your workers communicate with customers in a clear and efficient manner, you can avoid misunderstandings that may prevent your techs from getting the job done correctly the first time.

5. Customer Retention Rate

The true test of your company’s success is the number of customers you retain. While winning over clients is certainly an accomplishment, you won’t know how loyal they are to your business until they give you a second call. Analyzing your customer retention rate helps you determine how many repeat customers you have. This in turn lets you see how consistently you’re growing your customer base.

When tracking field service metrics and assessing your customer retention rate, it’s a good idea to study individual customer profiles. Customer profiles include valuable information on your most loyal clients, from their demographics to their purchase history.

Pay close attention to these metrics to understand your customers on a deeper level and to cater your services to them. By personalizing the user experience, you’ll be more likely to retain a higher percentage of customers.

6. Revenue Per Lead

Revenue per lead is a field service metric that’s worth your time and attention. In simple terms, revenue per lead is defined as the total volume of sales divided by the total number of leads. Keep in mind that this includes canceled leads as well. Evaluating the percentage of closed leads can help provide valuable insight into your company’s overall performance.

If you find that your business only closes a fraction of leads, it may be a good idea to return to the drawing board. Ask yourself what you could be doing differently to raise your percentage of closed leads. Are there any changes you can make to your business practices? By getting to the root of the problem, you can identify an effective solution and put it into action.

7. Repeat Visits

HVAC technician inspecting unit on repeat visitAs you work on tracking field service metrics, it’s important to account for repeat visits. Repeat visits refer to the number of times a technician returns to a job in order to complete it. Ideally, your techs should only have to visit a customer’s home once to finalize a service. If you discover that your total number of repeat visits is higher than expected, it’s a good idea to step back and reevaluate your workers’ training as well as your business practices.

One of the first adjustments you should make is reworking your schedule. If you have a high rate of repeat visits, this normally means there’s a flaw in your scheduling strategy. Another important issue to consider is training. It may be best to provide your technicians with further training if they often make additional visits to rectify a problem.

8. Business Growth

Each of the metrics listed here shares the common goal of helping your business grow. As you spend time tracking field service metrics, be sure to keep track of how quickly your company is growing. Your overall growth can be measured by your total number of customers, your business revenue, and other relevant factors.

It’s also worth noting that your company’s growth can be negatively influenced by low-quality service, poor billing practices, low customer satisfaction, and other problem areas. Fortunately, there are numerous steps you can take to rectify these issues. Remember to be honest with yourself about what you need to change about your practices going forward. When you approach your company’s weak spots with an open mind, you’ll be better equipped to address them.

It’s vital to pay attention to how your customers are responding to the changes you make. Analyzing customer attitudes is an essential part of tracking field service metrics. Once you have a better idea of what your clients like and dislike, you can better tailor your services to their needs.

Track Your Field Service Metrics Like a Seasoned Pro

Tracking field service metrics can help your service company flourish in a multitude of ways. Not only does this strategy make you aware of the areas you need to improve upon, but it also clues you in on how to do it. Whether you decide to boost sales through mobile quoting apps or a unique marketing strategy, the possibilities are endless. Just remember to give each of these metrics a try so that you can get the most out of them.



Trends and Modernization in the Field Service Industry

The Covid-19 pandemic reaffirmed the need for field service industry trends that were already gaining traction in recent years. As more people began to work remotely and storefronts were shuttered, the demand for field service software grew almost exponentially. This is what allowed successful businesses to weather the storm by continuing to provide their products and services without interruption, separating them from those that were not equipped to keep up with the need for these transitions.

Advances in AI technology and improvements in Bi dashboards, customer portals, and asset management have allowed some businesses to boost their return on investment, customer satisfaction, repeat business, and overall efficiency. Here are the current field service industry trends that are expected to shape the future.



An Increased Need for Virtual Services

While there was growing demand for virtual services prior to the pandemic, Covid-19 reshaped public opinion on working remotely and seeking services that are offered virtually. Examples include online learning, virtual doctor’s appointments and therapy sessions, and having meetings with service providers over video conference. Not all field service work can be performed virtually, but there is an increasing need to transition more service functions to a virtual platform rather than going the traditional route of scheduling onsite appointments.


BI Reporting and Dashboards

Business intelligence reports are critical to businesses looking to streamline marketing campaigns and remain ahead of the curve during shifting trends. BI dashboards are allowing companies to interpret data and statistics much more efficiently. While business intelligence reports are static and require detailed analysis in order to come to conclusions, dashboards are now allowing businesses to review data in an interactive interface, to review data in real time, and collaborate with team members more efficiently.

One of the newest field service industry trends is to use both BI reporting and dashboard in tandem to better predict consumer behavior and needs. The information can be presented to team members who don’t always have the technical knowledge needed to decipher a report in a way that is much easier to understand and react to. In a world where staying ahead can make or break a business, having the insights needed to make decisive choices is a necessity.


Updating to Advanced Field Service Software

There was already a transition occurring in the field service industry to digital software technologies, but this transition was sped along in late 2020 and early 2021. Advanced field service software is allowing companies to provide more accurate quotes and estimates, make managing their contracts easier, stay within budget, and manage their work forces more efficiently. This is one of the current field service industry trends that is expected to continue over the next decade.


Customer Portals

customer portals are importantMore people want ease of access to request work and monitor its progress. Customer portals are allowing businesses to keep their customers informed and to make it easier for clients to handle scheduling appointments, payment, and customer service requests. Businesses won’t need to employ as many people to perform many of the tasks that these customer portals are able to complete.

Information gleaned from a customer portal can improve efficiency. Whenever a customer provides details during a service request, it allows businesses to schedule appointments along a technician’s route who will be close by. This can save on fuel costs, reduce downtime, and ensure that workers are properly equipped before leaving the shop for their shifts. Customers often provide valuable feedback through the portal that can be used to improve company policies and strategies.


Digital Apps

One of the field service industry trends that is allowing some businesses to jump out ahead of their competitors is the development and use of mobile apps. These apps can be used to manage team members, to get updates on work progress, and to communicate these updates with customers. The companies that are using digital apps are creating a competitive advantage and forcing those who have not yet implemented the use of an app to consider it.

Mobile apps are often integrated with customer portals to make it easier for employees and customers to track work progress, provide updates, and communicate needs. It allows customers to access the same information on their phone that they can on their computers at home. Added convenience is a strong selling point for those who are always on the go.


Advances in Artificial Intelligence

People have mixed feelings about AI technology, but it’s inevitable that artificial intelligence will become a part of everyday life. Where it is useful in the field service industry right now is that it can save employees a lot of time by assessing what materials and parts are needed for a project, predict how long a project will take to complete, and schedule onsite visits in a manner that increases the team’s efficiency. It does this by determining ahead of time when certain parts are going to be available and when a technician is most likely to be in the area a service is required.

Artificial Intelligence is an effective means of analyzing consumer behavior and trends. It can help businesses determine when there will be an increase in demand for certain services, when to order materials, and how to load out a field technician’s truck with all the needed parts and equipment for the appointments that technician will be sent to each day.


Increased Demand for Self-Service

Fewer people want to talk to someone over the phone and one of the latest field service industry trends is that of self-service. The way that self-service is being handled is through a combination of customer portals and digital apps that allow customers to request service, monitor the progress, process payments, and settle any customer service concerns all from behind a screen. This is providing faster service, increasing customer satisfaction, and driving down costs for businesses and their customers.


Predictive Maintenance

Another use for artificial intelligence is to predict the imminent failure of equipment so that technicians can be prepared with everything they need ahead of a service request. This saves customers money by allowing field service technicians to perform maintenance before an equipment failure and mitigate the damage that would result from that failure. It also allows for the creation of a virtual environment for workers to use to troubleshoot potential fixes to common problems.


Field Service Field Training using VirtualizationUsing Virtual Reality to Train New Technicians

While most people associate virtual reality with gaming and entertainment, it’s allowing new field service technicians to be put into different situations they may encounter in the real world. Trainees can encounter more variables when attempting a repair in virtual reality and review their successes and failures following an exercise. This type of training is becoming more popular and it’s estimated that virtual reality or augmented reality will become incorporated in 50% of field service deployments and training programs.


Asset Management Systems

One of the most important field service industry trends is the implementation of asset management systems to track incoming and outgoing assets. An asset management system allows a company to track its physical and digital inventory so that companies know when they need to order more parts, update software systems, or purchase new computers and technology. It’s also useful for tracking documents such as invoices, payment receipts, and business licenses so that companies are able to make more informed decisions concerning asset management.

The result is better knowledge of the most opportune times to increase inventory, how to best maintain equipment, what assets are likely to cost, and the value of current assets that have depreciated. Whenever a business sells an asset that is no longer of use, the asset management system can help determine the profit or loss on its sale. Asset management systems can significantly reduce overhead by helping a company manage its expenses to eliminate unnecessary purchasing and to know when the best time to acquire new assets will be.


Improve Field Service Processes with FieldConnect

The demand for virtual services isn’t going to go away anytime soon. Finding ways to connect with your customers and employees virtually will give you a distinct advantage over your competitors. FieldConnect can help you reach more customers while ensuring your team members are more productive through the implementation of products such as our BI dashboard and reporting system, customer portals and asset management system software. Contact us to find out what software solutions and integrations are right for your business so that you can remain ahead of the current field service industry trends.

How to Elevate On-Site Visits with Field Service Estimating Software

There is little doubt that the field service industry faces various challenges unique to its field. At the forefront of these distinct tasks is the process of generating estimates. Field service organizations that succeed with these opportunities are poised to stand out from the competition while increasing profitability. And you can obtain these advantages by implementing effective field service estimating software.


Generating estimates requires the capacity to be adaptive, intuitive, and informed. Preparation for these capacities depends on your real-time access to customer history, service agreements, rate tables, and inventory. It also relies on your ability to assess the real-life components of a given task. There are few more excellent opportunities than to make estimates on-site—where the technician can rely on their expert assessment of the many variables involved in providing an estimate.


In this article, we present the various ways in which a field service organization stands to benefit from leveraging field service estimating software to their advantage while on-site.



The Benefits of On-Site Estimating for Field Service Work


Every field service organization faces the task of ensuring its operations run as lean and efficient as possible. With so many moving parts, the field service industry can quickly succumb to the setbacks of too much overhead and unprofitability. The past year with the pandemic has only increased how your organization might be facing new difficulties. Developing contactless procedures, wearing masks, ongoing health risks, and numerous other factors have been presented this past year. The necessity to adapt and evolve has rarely been more pressing.


For these reasons, it remains an essential priority to refine and elevate revenue generation. And the beginning of the revenue cycle is the process of estimating.


Estimates must accurately account for time, materials, risks, contingencies, and a profit margin that can sustain the business. These many variables create a context that can be difficult to judge from a distance. But the luxury of being on-site can further eliminate various challenges to generating effective estimates that offer numerous benefits.


Consider the following ways you can elevate your on-site visits with field service estimating software.


Increased efficiency

One of the primary benefits of using field service estimating software while on-site is the uptick in efficiency you will experience. Using this software on-site dramatically increases the speed you can receive and process data. You no longer must wait for a technician to drive back to the office, which can decrease—or eliminate—the need for multiple site visits. With on-site data entry and assessment, you can efficiently process your estimates while producing more quotes and winning more bids. The time you save also allows you to invest in other critical areas of your business, resulting in a spillover of efficiency throughout your operations.

Greater functionality and convenience

Imagine being able to be present with your customer while going over the specifics of their project. The clarity that comes with being on-site for estimates offers a level of functionality and convenience that cannot otherwise be achieved. You’ll gain the functionality of being able to ask immediate follow-up questions and verify the tasks presented. Also, the convenience of avoiding miscommunications with the customer cannot be understated. Rather than relying on your customer’s untrained opinion or perspective, technicians will be able to clarify and accurately diagnose various tasks.

Even further, field service estimating software will allow technicians or estimators to communicate with databases, supervisors, and the back office to provide quick estimates to your customer. Doing all of this while on-site significantly increases the likelihood of securing the project or ensuring ongoing projects.

Expertise that stands out

The field service industry is awash with stiff competition. Standing out from this competition can mean the difference between attracting new customers or securing loyalty from existing customers. Field service estimating software will offer you an edge to maintain a level of professionalism that distinguishes your operations from the rest of the industry.

Too many field service organizations remain stuck in outdated technology and procedures. And this is an opportunity for your organization to stand out. Estimating software will deliver speed, accuracy, and consistency—elevating the professional appearance of your company. This is even more evident when you empower your technicians to maintain this professionalism when they are in the field and interacting directly with your customers on-site. With expedient, accessible, and expert estimates offered on-site, you can build and reinforce a greater sense of confidence in your customers. This refined image even further contributes to your customer’s willingness to provide referrals and generate expanded business.

Expanded integration

Delivering on-site resources with field service estimating software also provides you the opportunity to integrate various operational processes further. For instance, with FieldConnect’s suite of software products, you can access your existing ERP system, dispatch, project management, and numerous other solutions while in the field. These integrations will elevate and streamline various workflows and reduce the shortcomings of replicating data or missing critical data points. Overall, integrating on-site estimates with your inventory, scheduling, and other areas will offer your company invaluable business insights.


Experience the FieldConnect Difference


The benefits of elevating on-site visits with the implementation of field service estimating software are not limited to the above examples. You can also expect to witness increased customer and employee satisfaction, cost reductions, labor decreases, and a general decline in overhead expenses.


A leader in the field service industry for nearly two decades, FieldConnect has developed robust software solutions for generating on-site estimates and converting them into quotes that secure greater profits for your organization.


With a diverse suite of products, FieldConnect’s solutions offer the highest quality in innovation and protection. Schedule a demo with FieldConnect to begin learning how to elevate your company to the next level.



Improving Quote Accuracy and Providing Onsite Estimates

Price quotes are one of the most important elements of any service-oriented business. They’re not just a piece of information that you offer to customers, but a gateway into further business with them. A company that can quickly offer relevant, reliable quotes is one that will experience much more success in its operations.

We’re living in an era where information, services, and products are expected on-demand. As such, being able to immediately provide accurate quotes onsite is a powerful asset that will help a business take an agile, dynamic approach to customer service. However, few companies have implemented such processes. There are real obstacles in the way of improving quote accuracy, but field service software has solved many of them.



Overcome the Obstacles to Efficient, Precise Quotes

providing onsite estimatesAs quotes are so important, it’s no wonder that businesses are cautious about who can provide them and from where. Providing an incorrect quote could have substantial repercussions, whether the quote is too high or too low. However, the processes that are in place to ensure accurate price quotes and the difficulty of finding the necessary information that goes into a quote can make quoting a fatally slow process. Maximizing your potential leads requires accurate, fast pricing, but it’s difficult to achieve either of these characteristics.

Inaccurate Prices

The risk of providing fast, on-the-spot quotes is that they’re more likely to be inaccurate. This can turn into a quote that’s too high, or even worse, too low. Trying to increase the price on a quote gives a prospect the suspicion that you’ve deliberately misled them. This is why having a tool (like FieldConnect) that keeps your pricing in sync with your ERP and updated in real-time is key to providing accurate onsite estimates.

Slow Response Time

Correctly calculating the current quote can require reconciling various disparate points of information. Depending on the current state of the inventory, staff availability, and various other requirements, price estimates can vary. Empowering your technicians to provide on-the-spot quotes for customers means finding a way to provide this data in an efficient, centralized way.

Incorporate Digitalization

The latest trend in various industries, from mechanical repair and maintenance to fire and life safety is digitalization. While there are many definitions of digitalization, it’s essentially the process of replacing physical processes with digital ones. For instance, replacing your internal paperwork with computer spreadsheets and files to save time and money is an example of digitalization. However, FieldConnect is working to bring digitalization into the trades and field service operations.



FieldConnect FieldQuotes

FieldQuotes is one of the leading components of the comprehensive FieldConnect set of field service software programs. The role of each program is unique, with some aiming to help management optimize work site control and coordination while others give the customer access to a steady flow of relevant information.

The role of FieldQuotes is to handle all of the complex, time-consuming details of providing quotes. With this tool, you’ll be able to have faith in giving every member of your organization the power to issue quotes for potential customers. It’s a complete, foolproof digitalized system for delivering accurate quotes in no time at all.


How it Works

FieldQuotes is capable of accessing various points of data in real-time and conforming with your existing method of quote calculation. It’s highly customizable and programmable, meaning that any company can utilize it for effective quote generation. This is an excellent example of perhaps the most important benefit that digitalization has to offer; efficiency.

Instead of sorting through your inventory and various, separate sources of information, you can use special software that automatically combines all of this information. As a result, issuing quotes becomes almost as simple as pushing a button.


Accurate Quotes Every Time

FieldQuotes is extremely accurate and reliable with the information that you provide it. When it operates from up-to-date, correct information on your rate tables, contract pricing, inventory, and other pricing elements, it will always provide accurate information. It’s just a matter of making sure that you keep these inputs accurate; but if you do, then you can count on correct, almost instantaneous quotes from any person using your program.


Deliver Quotes on the Spot

FieldQuotes revolutionizes the process of offering price quotes to customers. It makes the process extremely fast while improving quote accuracy at the same time. As a net result of these changes, anyone is able to provide quotes with the expectation that they’ll be accurate and reliable. As quotes are an opportunity to a connect to customers and introduce them to your services, being able to offer quotes freely will give your business far greater opportunities.



Boost Productivity and Customer Satisfaction with FieldConnect

While FieldQuotes is one of the major programs that FieldConnect offers, it’s only one component of a comprehensive suite of programs. With our field service software, you’ll be able to dramatically enhance the customer experience, streamline operations, and compete at a higher level than ever before. While many industrial and service-oriented companies still have not implemented digitalization, it consistently provides an advantage to those companies that do. As it becomes increasingly standard, your company will need to incorporate field service software to compete.

Whether you want to incorporate the full FieldConnect suite of field service software or simply want to improve quote accuracy, you’re in the right place. Get in touch with us and we’ll tell you all about how our mobile field service solutions can help your business succeed.



Improving Customer Experience as a Mechanical Technician

The mechanical/HVAC industry is extremely competitive. Customers have a wide array of options when it comes to manufacturers, repair companies, and other players in this industry. As such, companies are always looking for any way to secure a competitive advantage over their rivals. Today, the wave of the future and the key to getting ahead in the industry is mechanical service software.



Mechanical Service Software Can Revolutionize Customer Service

Mechanical service software isn’t a hammer that’s looking for a nail; rather, it’s a set of tailor-made solutions built to meet the challenges of field technicians. When you dispatch your mechanical technicians, you’re engaging in one of the most important customer-company interactions. Professionalism and technical skill are at the forefront in the mechanical service industry, and it’s hard for any company to truly outdo its competitors on this front. As such, a fundamental rethinking of customer service and the application of new technologies is the key to overcoming the obstacles to providing flawless customer experiences.



Obstacles to Seamless Customer Experiences

When developing the FieldConnect suite of field service software, we kept a range of specific problems in mind. Some of the major obstacles we identified were the following:


Lack of Input and Response

Customers are often curious about the processes and services they’re paying for, which is only natural. While technicians must be professional, helpful, and transparent in such cases, it also places a greater burden on them and slows the overall process of the job. Worse, the technician might not have the answers to their question due to a lack of direct data access.


Slow Access to Important Data

Traditionally, mechanical service technicians have not had as much autonomy and independence as they should. In theory, it’s easy to say that a technician should have the ability to access all relevant data pertaining to things like inventory and pricing.

Decentralizing these actions would allow technicians to offer better assistance to customers and even recommend additional products and services the customer might enjoy. However, giving all of your technicians unfettered access to inventory would result in unpredictable shifts in availability and prevent the system from functioning; as such, centralized inventory management is an unfortunate necessity.


Hands Tied by Procedure

Processes and inquiries are often tied up by the internal bureaucracy of a company. This has real consequences; sometimes, a technician has to tell an inquisitive customer to wait for information that they feel rightly entitled to. Likewise, technicians will have to wait longer than necessary to receive all of the tools they need for their work.

However, this raises many questions; what if it were possible to automate much of this bureaucracy and empower technicians and management in the process? Your field teams could get the information and equipment they need, when they need it, while management will be able to reallocate their time to other aspects of the job. Thanks to breakthroughs in process digitalization, this and much more is now possible.



Digitalization Can Empower Your Technicians

Digitalization and computerized logistics have a revolutionary effect on the ability of complex companies to operate more efficiently. We’re living in the information age, and the resultant changes aren’t limited to office work. You can apply field service software to your own company today, and immediately start to see the benefits.

Offer Quotes On-Demand

Field technicians are rarely able to simply offer quotes on demand and need feedback from management first. However, it’s possible to computerize the quote calculation process and streamline these procedures so that any member of your company can offer a quote. Instead of requiring customers to wait hours on necessary information, or lose interest in an elective product or service, you can get their answers in moments. All that you need to do is implement the FieldQuotes software program into your operations.

Streamline Dispatch

Dispatch of back-office personnel and equipment is an essential part of providing your mechanical technicians with the tools they need to get a job done. However, dispatch processes can be unnecessarily slow due to the need to check inventory and reconcile the potential needs of other teams. By applying digitalization to the dispatch process with FieldDispatch, you can eliminate the roadblocks that slow down this vital process. Speed is one of the defining elements of a first-rate customer experience, so benefits such as this are invaluable.

Provide Instant Information

Digitalization is introducing robust, customer self-service tools to virtually every industry. While technology cannot replace human expertise and support, the key is that it’s not meant to. Rather, the role of the breakthrough FieldDirect program is that it complements your field personnel. By providing your customers with FieldDirect, they’ll be able to access much of the information they’d have to glean from your staff via their device instead. Likewise, they’ll have other, additional types of information at their fingertips as well as instant access, which are benefits only digitalization can provide.

Enhanced Management

The customer experience starts before you even dispatch your technicians. Efficient scheduling and management have a reverberating impact throughout operations, so you shouldn’t neglect to enhance management. Consider implementing FieldAccess so that your managers can track minute-by-minute operations and take a proactive rather than reactive approach to ensuring a job well done, every time.



Mechanical Service Software with FieldConnect

FieldConnect is one of the leading organizations that’s bringing digitalization to industry and the trades. By incorporating streamlined, software-based solutions for communication, inventory management, and operations, you’ll enjoy a competitive advantage at every level of your business. Digitalization is key to boosting productivity and enhancing the customer experience. Get in touch with the FieldConnect team to learn more about our field tech solutions and how they can help your business.



Technology is a wonderful thing—especially when it helps your bottom line. Technicians in various field service industries, at one point, used to have to visit a job site, take down project notes, and leave the customer waiting for days after their meeting to receive a project quote. This process was made even more challenging if the client decided to add extras throughout the project. Thanks to mobile quoting apps, technicians no longer have to deal with the back and forth between clients and the sales team.

How Do Mobile Quoting Apps Work?

Now, it’s important to note that not all mobile quoting apps are created equally. Some may have additional features or integrations that others do not. That said, many of these mobile quoting apps do work quite similarly. However, before we can jump into the mobile quoting process, it’s essential to review what a traditional quoting process looks like.

Traditional Project Quoting Process

A project quote is the breakdown of charges that will be involved in the completion of a project. This number should give your customers an idea of the total project costs and why the project costs what it does. This breakdown may include:

  • Estimated work hours
  • Cost of materials
  • Travel costs
  • Demolition costs, etc.

The process of drawing up a quote for your customer isn’t necessarily complicated. What made it challenging was the fact that it requires multiple parties to work together, and that meant it took several days for a quote to be created and then shared with the customer, who would then need to approve of it or request changes.

This was a time-consuming process because it required the field service technician to travel to the job site and speak with the customer about what they wanted. Once the technician had all their notes, they would need to travel back to the office and give the notes to the sales team, who would need time to assemble the necessary information to create the quote. Finally, once the quote was written up, it would need to be discussed with the client, and if they agreed, the project could begin. If they didn’t, then it was back to the drawing board—literally.

This process could become even more complicated if the customer decided to make changes partway through the project, as a new quote would need to be drawn up and agreed upon.

Digital Mobile Quoting Process

Thanks to technology, field service quoting has become much more streamlined. The digital mobile quoting process remains the same as the traditional process in that it requires:

  • Traveling/speaking to the client on the job site
  • Drawing together the project quote
  • The client agrees or asks for adjustments

Thanks to digital mobile quoting apps, this process is sped up significantly because technicians can access all relevant information via their app, allowing them to draw up a quote rather quickly. Even better, should they have questions, they can quickly contact someone in the sales department via the app and get the information they need.

This sped-up process allows the client to receive their project quote the same day and will enable them to ask questions about possible job add-ons as they go, since adding items to the quotes no longer requires having the sales team write up a totally new quote.

5 Ways Mobile Quoting Apps Can Help You Increase Your Sales

Sure, mobile quoting apps help you save time and money, but do they actually help you increase your overall sales? Absolutely.

For example, Tampa Bay Trane, a large Florida-based HVACR company, was able to grow its sales by using a mobile quoting app. While using this app over the span of two months, they increased their sales by approximately $25,000. Tim Barnes, General Manager of Tampa Bay Trane, stated that the results of implementing the mobile quoting app were rapid, and their team hasn’t looked back since.

So, what contributes to these sales increases? Here are five benefits of using a mobile quoting app that can help you increase your sales as well:

1. Draft/Approve Quotes from Anywhere

Unlike traditional quoting processes, utilizing a mobile quoting app allows your field technicians to draft up detailed quotes while on the job site and in the presence of customers. This allows the technician to show the client the initial quote, and should they not agree with it or want to ask about possible job add-ons, they can instantly make the changes.

Once the client is happy with the quote, most mobile quoting apps allow the client to approve the quote and sign off on it—all within a matter of hours (or less!).

2. All Required Information is Available on Your Device

Most mobile quoting apps often work in conjunction with other software. That allows your technician access to all the information they need to generate an accurate quote. This eliminates the need for waiting on other staff members to get technicians the answers or information they need, cutting down the time it takes to create a quote significantly—and in many cases, allowing the client to approve of the quote in the same day.

3. Improved Time Management with Instant Sales Quoting

With all the information needed to generate an accurate quote within your mobile quoting app, your technicians’ time management should also improve significantly. Since projects don’t begin same-day (in most cases), that means your technician can move from one customer to the next within a timely manner.

With device tracking available on most field service management apps, you can monitor how long it takes for a technician to complete a quote at each location, and should something come up and you’re noticing they are spending too much time in one location, you can ask them about it to see what is causing the holdup.

4. Close New Deals Faster

Working with an existing customer is often much simpler than trying to onboard a new one. When trying to close a new deal, your technicians not only need to be able to convince them that each step in the process is necessary, but that the cost is fair.

Mobile quoting apps allow you to break that information down for new clients quickly and easily, allowing them to make sense of the breakdown and approve of a quote once they are satisfied with the explanation.

5. Improved Customer Satisfaction

Speed and availability not only make life easier for your technician but helps you improve your customer’s overall satisfaction as well. For them, time is money, so the quicker the initial quoting process goes, the quicker the project can begin and be completed. When done swiftly and to the customer’s satisfaction, they’ll be more likely to return to your company for future projects and willing to recommend your brand to their friends and loved ones.

Make FieldConnect Your Go-To Mobile Quoting App

With FieldConnect’s FieldQuotes services, your technicians can quote add-on business while they are still on the job site. Even better, you can eliminate paper-based quotes while still ensuring that your technician’s quote complies with the pricing established in your ERP—minimizing back-office involvement and streamlining the entire quoting process.

Have questions about the many FieldConnect solutions available? Then contact us today for more information, or request your demo to experience it for yourself!


Bringing Digitalization into the Fire & Life Safety Industry

The fire and life safety industry represents the first line of defense against the risks of fire damage. Fire alarms alone likely save thousands of lives each year, not to mention that the hastened response reduces property damage. However, fire and life safety is on the cusp of a major leap in effectiveness and efficiency thanks to digitalization. Digitalization has vast potential in the fire and safety industry, both by empowering service technicians and making safety solutions better.


How Digitalization is Entering Fire and Life Safety

What is Digitalization?

Digitalization is a wide-ranging umbrella term that covers all sorts of different, technology-initiated developments. This trend is all around you, from your use of digital spreadsheets rather than paper documents or use of online video calling. At its core, digitalization is the process of transforming formerly physical, analog processes into digital, software-based ones.

Digitalization can enhance virtually any process and empower field technicians in any industry, but particularly fire and life safety. However, that’s not the only benefit of digitalization in the fire and safety industry; the rich capability of smart, automated processes is also essential.


The Relevance of IoT in Fire, Life Safety

One particularly powerful digitalization trend is the rise of the Internet of Things, IoT. This refers to the network of smart devices that are increasingly inhabiting our homes, workplaces, and other buildings. Phones, televisions, cameras, and more may contain complex sensors and draw all sorts of valuable data. The rise of the IoT-equipped smart home has huge ramifications in empowering devices to detect and deal with fire risks on their own.



Technologies to Watch in Fire and Life Safety

Intelligent Hypoxic Air Systems

Hypoxic air systems can reduce oxygen levels to the point that they will smother any fire in an area. Currently, hypoxic air systems occupy an awkward regulatory space as oxygen-reduction does not fit into a legally recognized framework for fire safety. Likewise, they do pose a danger in areas where people don’t wear suitable PPE.

While this limits the applicability of hypoxic air to uninhabited areas or areas where people have the needed PPE, it’s an incredibly powerful fire prevention resource. In a smart facility with IoT equipment feeding information on smoke, heat, and fire to the other devices, a hypoxic air system can automatically kill fire risks.

Video Image Smoke Detection Systems

Modern algorithms and machine learning have created exciting new possibilities in fire and life safety. Video image smoke detection systems employ cameras that capture visual data and computers that have learned how to identify smoke and other signs of fire in visual data. The end result is a powerful, proactive fire-detection resource that can alert human operators and trigger automated fire-suppression systems.



FieldConnect Digitalization Solutions

With time, digitalization will introduce even more exciting technologies that will make us safer and more efficient than ever before. However, it’s already possible for you to leverage digitalization in your operations and gain a competitive advantage. FieldConnect understands that this form of modernization is already critical to the fire and life safety industry, and has taken measures to help businesses within this industry incorporate recent advances.


Enhance Customer Connectivity

It’s highly important to provide customers with a responsive, transparent process. You should be able to answer their questions about timetables, progress, and the work that your technicians are performing. However, it’s challenging to offer this sort of service with traditional business models; compiling all of this information takes time.

However, digitalization neatly solves the problem with FieldDirect. This program provides relevant, routine inputs from your technicians and management in a convenient, accessible point of access for customers. Your clients can find virtually anything they’ll need on the spot with this program.


Centralize Technician Management

Digitalization is game-changing for fire and life safety managers. In the same way that FieldDirect provides real-time field data to customers, you can use FieldAccess to track operations as they happen. It gives management simultaneous, total access to every worksite while also offering insight into the location and work activities of each contractor. Hour-by-hour management is more efficient than ever thanks to FieldAccess, and it’s well-complemented by FieldGateway.

FieldGateway uses digitalization and smart design in a more big-picture, logistical-strategic sense than other programs. It places supply invoices, current, and near-future work schedules, and eliminates the need for check-in calls and other disruptive necessities of the analog workplace. With these two programs together, you’ll be able to run your business more efficiently than ever. However, digitalization also has benefits for your technicians in the field that will improve productivity and boost customer satisfaction.


Operate Dynamic, Responsive Field Teams

In the eyes of the customer, the most important thing is that a knowledgeable professional does their job correctly. If anything is the second-most important feature, then that is responsiveness and transparency. No one wants to talk to your technicians about a service they need and take hours or longer waiting for a quote or some necessary piece of equipment. In both cases, FieldConnect can streamline your operations with FieldQuotes and FieldDispatch.

FieldQuotes correlates all sorts of pricing information from your inventory to services and calculates quotes on the spot. Likewise, FieldDispatch enables technicians to immediately identify and request the tools they need to get a job done. With this combination, your technicians will be able to take the initiative and give customers the information and services they need in a matter of minutes rather than hours, or hours rather than days.



Get in Touch with the FieldConnect Team

Companies that make use of the advances of digitalization will be able to operate more quickly and efficiently than competitors. If you want to reap the benefits of digitizing your organization, then your next step is to contact FieldConnect. Our representatives will happily answer your questions about the applicability of our solutions, pricing, and more.

Empower your fire and life safety technicians; schedule a consultation with us and incorporate FieldConnect into your operations.




Experience the Difference with FieldConnect

FieldConnect stands out amidst the competitors because we think differently. Our solutions are distinct from the field service resources you have known. We have years of experience and dedication to providing the most innovative software solutions. The list of features and benefits sets us apart from companies like MSI Data.
But we prefer to let the facts speak for themselves. Below is a long list of features and functionality that give you a clear understanding of the distinction you can expect from FieldConnect. You will find that we are genuinely a one-of-kind set of solutions for field service management.
Our mobile integrated applications offer you the freedom to stay ahead of the game and maintain consistent efficiency. Native and seamless integration with your legacy systems ensures continuity and expansion of your current operations. You will experience the freedom to use a variety of devices, hardware platforms, and operating systems. There’s no need to worry about the cost of new equipment. Amongst many other features that set us apart, you’ll gain access to the power of cloud-based technologies—at no additional charge.
Explore the difference with FieldConnect.



Mobile Integrated Applications

FieldConnect has developed a unique ecosystem of applications. Each of these applications has native integration capacities with Vista by Viewpoint. This integration produces a powerful combination of mobile resources with the insights and efficiency of seamlessly integrating with your existing ERP/accounting system. 


Inspections workflow

Elevate your workflows with functionality designed for inspections. Our applications come fully equipped with the following features: 

    • Functionality for site equipment and serviceable items
    • Assign a task for multiple job items—with native associations to your work orders in Vista
    • Compliance for inspection with enforcement
    • Configure workflows with controls installed to ensure process flows are completed

Work orders for projects and jobs

Take your work orders to the next level with specifications for various projects or jobs. Utilize the following features to ensure efficient and accurate work orders: 

    • Costing for project and phase codes
    • Resources Scheduling 

Work orders for equipment costing

Generate work orders for capital equipment or internal assets. 


FieldProject application

Integrate our FieldProject application’s capacities with the Vista PM Module for accelerated project status and detailed reporting. Our FieldProject solution is a refined mobility tool that allows you to quickly collect the data required for your projects. 

Combined with the integration to the Vista PM module, you can look forward to the following features: 

    • Project and phase time entry
    • Job costing
    • Equipment usage and costing
    • Phase progress
    • Daily logs
    • Inventory and materials
    • Hybrid user interface (UI) for service and project


Amplify your ability to keep timesheets with the added benefit of reviewing and approving the process. Our solutions also offer you the capacity to consolidate service and project time entries, including unapplied time. 


FieldQuotes application 

Our FieldQuotes application takes native integration with Vista a step further. You can generate quotes on the spot and convert each into a work order in Vista. 


Customer portal

The customer portal we offer distinguishes us from the competition. It provides you a personalized and efficient way to access your account and numerous features. Gain visibility into real-time work order status or request new service. 

But our customer portal is even more dynamic. The portal also has the following features: 

    • Access service and equipment history
    • Forms
    • Attachments
    • Invoices
    • Quotes


Attachment and document management

Our ecosystem of integrated applications also has a rich set of features for managing attachments and documents, including thumbnail views for technicians. 


Work orders/scheduling permissions

Utilize our innovative applications to empower your technicians with the ability to create new work orders and schedule permissions. 



Integrated Service and Project Modules

In addition to our ecosystem of mobile applications, FieldConnect offers a series of service and project modules. These modules also offer native and seamless integration with Vista by Viewpoint. Transform your productivity by extending the power of your Vista Service Management Module. 


Reads and writes

Our service and project modules go beyond simply syncing your data. You gain the ability to perform real-time reads and writes to your existing Vista database. Even further, Field connect provides Source of Record Integrity. 



Device Agnostic Applications

You no longer have to worry about compatibility issues. Our applications work across all hardware platforms and operating systems—including iOS, Android, Windows, smartphones, tablets, or laptops. We know how critical it is to have consistent access to your data without worrying about the device you’re using or whether you have connectivity.

Offline technology

You will no longer be reliant on an internet connection to access your data. FieldConnect applications employ offline technology—keeping your data accessible in a disconnected mode. 

Our offline feature offers the same user interface (UI) experience, content, and performance. FieldConnect applications will immediately sync and upload all data when you return to connected mode. 

 Real-time data

FieldConnect allows you to log in with any device without worrying about data or applications being stored locally on the device. This capability provides access to real-time data without reliance on batch syncing schedules. 



Forms Engine

FieldConnect distinguishes itself from the competitors by providing a superior platform for customizable forms. 

Structured Query Language (SQL) database

With our forms engine, you can enter data in a SQL database for reporting. Forms are saved as embedded attachments to work orders in your existing Vista platform. 

Busines Rules framework

FieldConnect’s forms engine allows you to configure a proper framework for Business Rules, including the following dynamic capabilities: 

    • Enforcement
    • Offline use
    • Mapping and compliance
    • Validation
    • Logic

The forms solution also includes an HTML forms builder and editor. 



FieldGateway and Front-End Graphical Dispatch Board

We also set ourselves apart with the FieldGateway solution. You gain a front-end graphical dispatch board with unlimited licensing for dispatchers, administrators, supervisors, and back-office roles. 



Cloud-Based Solutions

FieldConnect is proud to utilize the most critical resources available in the modern technological environment. Cloud-based solutions are a vital and necessary resource for your business to excel and succeed over the competition. 

This offering is fully hosted and managed by FieldConnect in the Microsoft Azure Cloud at no additional cost to you. Even more, there are no IT resources or bandwidth required for your organization to utilize our powerful cloud-based resources.  



Viewpoint Strategic Partner 

FieldConnect understands how vital strategic partnerships are to your success. We distinguish ourselves by partnering with the most advanced and trusted brands. And we pride ourselves on extending the native functionality of Viewpoint solutions. 

Our partnership with Viewpoint offers you a unique opportunity to enhance your service to clients. Viewpoint chooses to partner with us because we deliver best-in-class solutions with seamless integration. This collaboration allows us to tap into a vast set of experience, knowledge base, and best practice—with more than a hundred implementations with Vista by Viewpoint.     

Offer your Vista customers a superior mobile field service solution by using FieldConnect to elevate your success.



Experience the Difference 

Since 2002, FieldConnect has provided mobile solutions designed around the needs of field service organizations. We have led the industry of software solutions for Mobile Field Service providers with a powerful and easy-to-use solution for service organizations of all sizes. 

For nearly two decades, we have been refining the way we stand out from the competition. Our extensive suite of software solutions can also help you. FieldConnect will support you in forging a distinct advantage and competitive edge. 

We are ready to share the FieldConnect difference with you. Request a demo today.



Post-Pandemic Employer Guide for Re- Opening Office Space

One of the biggest challenges companies are dealing with is how to re-open as Covid restrictions are lifted. Even as of the time of this writing (April 2021),  the situation with COVID-19 is prone to rapid change. Some states are still struggling with vaccines rollout, while others are ahead of the curve. While the national guidelines are largely easy to comply with, the states also have their own requirements for offices to reopen. Re-opening requirements are fairly uniform across the nation while intricacies incertain states (California and New York) should be discussed.



Adhere to CDC Guidelines

Every business should strive to comply with the nationwide CDC requirements for reopening. These consist of a mixture of requirements and recommendations. Let’s take a look at some steps every business should take before reopening and inviting employees back into the office place.



Step One: Thoroughly Evaluate Your Building

Continued occupancy has the effect of preserving a building thanks to the lighting, heating, and cleaning that accommodates its occupants. Office buildings that have gone unoccupied for the duration of the pandemic might have generated a number of risks that need to be assessed.


For instance, mold can easily take root in office buildings that have been cold and dark for months. Your first step in preparing to resume business operations is to examine the building for any mold growth, as well as architectural and structural problems that may have developed. After assuring the basic safety and cleanliness of your office building, you can move on to COVID-specific requirements.



Step Two: Assess Common Areas and Items

Crowded common areas and items such as coffee pots and drinking fountains can be flashpoints for COVID transmission. Before reopening, look for points that might present a high COVID risk and either dispose of them or enable a means of touch- free operation. You might install a foot pedal-based drinking fountain rather than the more common hand-operated ones. Additionally, providing snacks and drinks in one- time packaging and encouraging employees to bring drinks from home are inventive solutions. Consider installing hand sanitation stations and encourage employees to keep their hands washed and desks clean.


Step Three: Comply With and Enable Effective Social Distancing

Make it clear that you expect employees to comply with social distancing requirements. Put down visual markers such as tape, signs, and other cues in parking lots and hallways. Additionally, make sure that your floor plan and office layout enables workers to do their work from a safe distance. If it’s not possible to rearrange seating to give workers six feet of distance, then install physical shields in the spaces between them.



Step Four: Improve Air Quality

Ventilation and air cycling are – alongside masks – some of the most important ways to reduce COVID transmission. The CDC offers a few recommendations to improve air quality and ventilation. For instance, you might operate the air conditioning system to maximize air replacement for two hours before and after working hours or simply open windows and turn on fans to improve air quality. Upgrading Air filtration systems may be needed. It is recommended (at a minimum) to replace air filters and update maintenance timing on those filters so they are changed out more frequently.



Step Five: Develop Administrative Procedures

In the pre-COVID landscape, it was fairly normal for someone to come into work if they exhibited a minor cold or light flu. Now it is safer to suggest employees stay home if they exhibit any symptoms of illness. If someone does come into work with what could be COVID symptoms, management is required to act.


Take steps to immediately separate the employee from the rest of the population. Keep masks on hand and provide the employee with a face mask. And kindly direct the employee to go home. Recommend that the employee follow up with their healthcare provider, who will be able to provide testing or otherwise instruct the employee on the latest guidelines for those who may be sick. And if necessary, ask the employee to provide a doctor’s recommendation on returning back to a work environment (this can be awkward and uncomfortable to ask, but important to keep down the possible spread of infection).



Step Six: Communicate any Changes to Employees

Communicate, communicate, and communicate. Be sure all employees understand the new expectations. Advise and tell them what management has done to help them successfully comply with COVID restrictions. Likewise, inform employees of any changes in sick day policies that are meant to help them stay home and avoid spreading illness should they appear to be presenting symptoms.



Final Step: Comply with Local/State Guidelines

Overall, the CDC guidelines are straightforward, the CDC has left many details of reopening policies to the states. Most states have fairly negligible requirements for office buildings, although these vary and are prone to change.

Currently, the two states with the most challenging requirements to meet are California and New York.



COVID-19 Resources:



California COVID-19/Pandemic Guidelines


California manages COVID on a county-by-county basis and uses a color-based tier system; yellow, orange, red, and purple. In counties with the purple designation, office buildings cannot resume work and office workers must continue to work remotely. More and more countries are reaching the milder designations; San Francisco county recently reached an orange designation. As such, office buildings were allowed to reopen but are expected to maximize their use of remote workers.


While the situation is susceptible to change, the current publication of the California Employer’s Playbook allows office buildings to reopen and proscribes the following reopening process:


  1. Perform a detailed risk assessment and create a work site-specific COVID-19 prevention plan
  2. Train workers on how to limit the spread of COVID-19. This includes how to screen themselves for symptoms and when to stay home
  3. Set up individual control measures and screenings
  4. Put disinfection protocols in place
  5. Establish physical distancing guidelines
  6. Establish universal face covering requirements (with allowed exceptions) in accordance with CDPH guidelines.


While somewhat more stringent than the CDC process, the steps are fundamentally similar. Most important is the step of setting up control and screening measures, plus the necessity of adhering to the CDPH mask mandate.



New York COVID-19/Pandemic Guidelines


New York is currently in stage 4 of its phased COVID reopening program. Office buildings were able to reopen under Phase 2, so long as they comply with the minimum state requirements. You can find these requirements in the Interim Guidance for Commercial Building Management During the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency. While most of the requirements are the same as the CDC recommendations, there are some noteworthy additions.


For instance, elevators and small meeting rooms may only be used at 50% capacity with all occupants wearing a mask. It’s also necessary to keep the onsite workforce at a sufficiently low level and social distance those at the office. Above this level, you need to rely on remote workers to supplement your employees who are onsite.


New York also requires employers to procure face covers and provide them to the onsite staff without charge. Beyond these requirements, the state-specific guidelines largely comply with guidance from the CDC.



NOTE: This guide is not meant to replace any recommendations by your local, county, state, or federal government health officials. It is not all inclusive, nor has it been vetted by a licensed health professional. This article is informational only, read at your own discretion.



If you have any further questions, or feel like we missed something, please reach out. All updates to this document will be published (and kept up to date) on the FieldConnect Field Service Software Blog.



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