4 uses of location tracking application in field service

Today we see many uses for GPS tracking mobile app around us. Location tracking applications are widely used in field service. GPS-enabled field service management software allows you to effectively track and direct your technicians. Saleswah Service CRM is a GPS tracking mobile app that helps streamline operations and improve efficiency.

gps tracking mobile app

What is a location tracking application?

In field service, it is important to keep track of your service personnel who are out in the field attending to customers. This is done using a mobile app that depends on GPS coordinates and Google Maps.
A location tracking application is a functionality built into field sales or field service apps- to let the user and others in the organization know his whereabouts.

4 uses of phone location tracking app

  • Tracking movement of field people in field service
  • Helping navigation for field service poeple
  • Allocating work to nearby resource in field service
  • Accurately locating the customer location and area.

While there are other uses- most notably in the area of vehicle tracking and asset management, let’s limit our scope here to field technician tracking using a GPS tracking mobile app.

How does a GPS tracking mobile app work?

A location tracking app is on your mobile phone using GPS navigation and Google maps to help you find your way, know where you are, and let others know your location.

how does gps work

What is GPS?

GPS (Global Positioning Satellite) systems are basically using a global system of satellites in space to uniquely determine your position on earth accurately to a few meters. They constantly send signals so that we know where they are. All modern smartphones have hardware that listens to these signals coming in. After calculating the distance between four or more GPS satellites, the receiver can figure out where you are.

Latitudes and longitudes

We all know that in order to locate any place on earth, we use a system of horizontal (latitudes) and vertical lines that criss-cross the globe. The intersection of any of these vertical and horizontal lines gives the unique position of the place on earth. So, every person, every postal address, every object on earth can be given an address: which is defined by the number pair called latitude-longitude (or lat-long for short). When you move from one place to another, your lat-long constantly change.

Saleswah CRM for field service: the phone location tracking app

Field service management software systems integrated with GPS technology allow employees to track the location of technicians and also help the technicians in navigation while on the job. By tracking the location of technicians, GPS tracking mobile app helps field service companies optimize the use of technician time and improve the customer experience.

Tangible benefits of phone location tracking app

In addition to providing technicians with customer data and monitoring available equipment, on-site management software can help technicians move and work throughout the day. Field service software increases technician time with customers, reduces the number of technicians traveling between site and office, and speeds up delivery and billing times.

Location tracking application in the hands of the technician

Any technician who shows up at a customer’s site will be carrying the GPS-enabled Saleswah CRM field service management app. Field technicians can access scheduled jobs from any mobile device, and GPS tracking mobile app provides accurate, real-time location data. With a phone location tracker app, field management software can both suggest nearby technicians and estimate the arrival time of a new technician, alerting the customer to any service delays.

Allocate job to nearby technician using the location tracking application

Location tracking applications can easily help locate the technician who is closest to the site of defective equipment. So, the task can be assigned to re-assigned to him.

This improves customer satisfaction by reducing the time it takes to complete a work order and prevents costly service delays. This achieves exceptional on-site service through workforce management, request tracking, and full visibility into the service delivery cycle.

gps tracking mobile app

Helping technician navigation

With the help of the GPS tracking mobile app, the technicians can navigate to the site faster and resolve issues quicker leading to better customer satisfaction.

All sites located and stored in Saleswah database using lat-long

Saleswah CRM gives the option to tag each installation site with its GPS coordinates. This helps locate them faster and reduces dependence on postal addresses, especially for remote sites.

Streamlining clerical processes both in the field and in the home office enables technicians to deliver fast and helpful services with minimal delays and greater customer satisfaction. This not only eliminates friction from the technician’s day, but also reduces costly truck trips, improves service efficiency, and increases first access, delivering double-digit improvements in customer satisfaction and profitability.

This allows companies to manage all data, scheduling, monitoring, updating, and scheduling in one place. Saleswah CRM tracks field inventory at selected locations and has modules for work order management, scheduling, tool tracking, and maintenance. Geolocation helps you quickly identify, plan, and track locations, and services.

Using location tracking application creatively: in customer self service

Your customers can use Grahak Setu to profile themselves. Their task is made easier by letting them use GPS and Google to fill in their postal address. This reduces errors in site location.

Please also see this post where a client creatively used GPS data to plan service centre locations.

A few other uses

Cloud-based field service software enables technicians and employees to intelligently plan and track moving parts, from end-to-end service teams to equipment and spare parts or “backbone inventory.” The software automates processes, reduces multitasking, and gives technicians access to the vital information they need about service dates, service history, and ownership records.

With the field service app, team leaders can ensure that technicians are the right fit for the job that matches their skills, that the team is making the most of their time moving between jobs, and that each team member follows safety and corporate protocols.

When you connect customers with their field service technicians on the day of service and provide the ability to view and track technician locations on a map, you can get a return on investment from a streamlined communication workflow. Improve customer service while tracking all issues that occur in the field. Labor costs are reduced as fewer field personnel are required to perform the same amount of work. Performance improvements may result in fewer help desk calls. GPS-enabled field service management software makes it easy to define job entry and exit times, both mitigating the problem of technicians forgetting to record hours worked and preventing fraudulent time-stamped schedules from being passed to the system.

Saleswah CRM innovations in using GPS tracking mobile app

We can track employees in the field, automatically timestamp, and track company properties. Using this mobile app, your team members can view their schedules, communicate with other team members and dispatchers, and send messages.

No location spoofing allowed

We have ensured the location reported by the app is the actual location the phone is rather than being corrupted by some other location spoofing app.

The Amazing Grahak Setu app builds bridges with customers.

Why Grahak Setu

Imagine you are a customer with a piece of faulty equipment. You are trying to reach a company phone number. Here are several things you, in all probability, do not know.

  • What is the phone number you have to reach
  • How to get thru the IVR menu options
  • Where is the warranty card?

If you have been in that situation (I know I have been), and you want a better way, read on. This is about a creative way to solve the same problem, using a mobile app called Grahak Setu.

Repair and Maintenance

What is Grahak Setu

Grahak Setu is a mobile app meant for consumers to use with which they can connect to manufacturers like you. To log service complaints. And track service complaints. And receive itemized estimates, GST invoices, and even make payments online. More here.

So let us say, as a customer (Grahak), you own a Microwave oven from Samsung, a TV from Sony, and a Washing Machine from Bosch. You can connect to each of these companies from the same profile in the same app. But of course, Samsung will only know that you own their Microwave oven. As Sony would only know about the TV.

Like the Digilocker

Grahak Setu is like the Digilocker service – it stores your customers’ information and which he may share with you when he needs to.

Of course, Digilocker services are provided by the Govt of India. We are not the GOI. We are only using the Digilocker to illustrate a point. Like Digilocker, we also use mobile authentication and then link all transactions and profile information to your mobile number.

Like Digilocker services can be used to get authenticated with and get serviced from many Government departments, a customer can use his profile to connect to many service providers.

What it is not

We have no connection with SBI Grahak Setu. That is an app for the State Bank of India’s customers. We are also different from Urban Company- more on that later.

Who is Grahak Setu for

  • This is meant for those customers who are fed up with call centers.
  • This is meant for customers who will appreciate a single place to keep all their equipment details.
  • This is meant for those, yes, like me, who misplace their warranty cards.
  • And, this is FREE!

Why you should promote Grahak Setu to your customers

Promote Grahak Setu

Features (as your customer- Grahak sees it)

Keep list of equipment, under your care – household or office- in one place

Warranty documents in Grahak Setu

Grahak Setu mobile app helps you to safely keep details of your household equipment or those in your office in one place. Details of products of various types from many vendors can be stored.

So, next time your equipment needs repair, you can simply locate the equipment in the list inside your app, and send in a service request in a couple of clicks.

Track warranty and AMC coverage

warranty coverage

When the Grahak logs a service ticket with the manufacturing company, it vets the serial number- either remotely or when the technician visits. He decides the warranty coverage and, updates in the system.

This process works even better when the service vendor/ product manufacturer is using the Saleswah CRM service management backend as the entire process is online, seamless, and leaves no scope for errors.

Ship products to service centers for repair

Ship equipment

There are some products which can only be repaired in a service center, like laptops, mobile phones, cars, water ATMs, etc. Grahak Setu connected to a provider who is using Saleswah CRM can facilitate shipment to the repair center and track the entire repair flow there as well.

Get item wise repair estimate

Itemized repair estimate

Service technicians using Saleswah can inspect the equipment under repair and immediately generate an itemized estimate for repairs needed. What is more, he can then push the quotation to the mobile of the customer’s Grahak Setu App. The customer can then pay online after approving the estimate.

When the customer pays online, the status of the ticket changes immediately to “Queued for repair” and the technician who was assigned the repair gets an alert. This saves a lot of time and effort on his part to have to check back with his accounts department.

Online payment and approval of repair estimate

The customer makes the payment from the mobile app using a highly secure payment gateway. He gets a confirmation in the app that the payment has been made. He also sees the status of the ticket has changed to “Queued for repair”. He also knows who the technician is who is handling his equipment and he can exchange messages for clarifications with him.

warranty coverage

Messaging between the customer and technician handling the repair is simple, direct, and fruitful. It does away with the need to have someone manage the phone lines.

Get intimation of repair done and shipped back

Once the repair is done, the technician hands it back to dispatch and the software prints out the GST invoice that accompany the shipment back to the customer- or simply hands it over to the customer and post the paid invoice in the app. The customer receives the repaired product back.

Why should you use the Saleswah CRM backend for service center management

As a manufacturer providing after-sales service, you can appreciate getting fast intimation from your clients for service-related issues. Which is what Grahak Setu does. You will receive an email from the system every time there is a service request logged in your name.

Accurate information of customer location and vetted contact information in service leads

Email intimation from Grahak Setu platform
Email intimation from the Grahak Setu Platform

Every address and mobile number provided by the complainant is vetted carefully. So, you can be assured of genuine leads. Also, there is no time lag between the customer logging a complaint on our platform and this email reaching you.

Any email that comes to your inbox from a customer needs to be attended to. This is unfortunately a task requiring manual intervention. But it need not be so.

If you had a Saleswah CRM connected at the backend, the lead will get logged in the system and the customer will be sent an acknowledgment in the Grahak Setu app within seconds.

Build up an installed base of equipment by site

Whether automatically – as in connected to Saleswah CRM- or manually, you will slowly build up an accurate database of equipment and the persons in charge and their location. If you did it in Saleswah, the process is automatic and over time, you can run cross-selling or upselling campaigns.

Provide the right level of support – warranty, AMC or paid

When you log service tickets and log them in the database, you will also start logging additional information like serial numbers, warranty expiry date, etc. This will help you estimate service requirements going forward and provide the right level of support as per requirements to the customer.

If you provide sales and provide support to other businesses, you can group these installations within the companies you support. And tag both the sites and contacts accordingly.

Manage spares part inventory and track usage

One massive advantage of using a service CRM like Saleswah is that you can create a spare parts list and tag each part with one or multiple pieces of equipment. Then, while repairing, you can also track the usage and send quotations and invoices for the parts used in the repair.

Saleswah keeps a track of all spares used and unused and also lets you manage the spares inventory.

You can assign managers with approval roles for spares usage.

Assign to technician

When a ticket is logged in Saleswah, the first thing we need to do is to find a technician who covers that area and assign it to him.

The technician will visit and help fix the problem. Of course, if you provide support only in your service centers, then your technician will let the customer know what the correct usage is-on phone or chat. If he is unable to fix the problem on the phone, he can have the customer bring the product over (or ship it) to the service center.

Generate repair estimate

Get paid online and ticket status changes

Once the technician inspects the equipment, he knows

Alerts and notifications

Your service team gets an alert at every change in status of the ticket- and so does the customer through the mobile app.

This ensures no surprise. Everyone knows the correct status and in case of urgency, you can always send a chat message.

Receive and ship equipment back to the customer.

Once the repair is done, a GST invoice is generated from the system and emailed to the customer – also pushed to the Grahak Setu app for him to download at any time.

Benefits of Grahak Setu and Saleswah together to you

Call centers are expensive- smaller companies can’t afford

Having a call center working for even 12 hours a day is a luxury only really large companies can afford. Grahak Setu allows you to provide a 24/7 service call logging facility to your clients at zero cost. Even if you did not use the more advanced functionality of the Saleswah CRM, this single benefit is enough for most people to consider moving to Grahak Setu.

Create installed base for upselling and cross-selling

When you use Saleswah CRM service automation software at the backend, you will not only have an accurate installed base of equipment but will have rich transactions data- repairs made, maintenance done, spare parts used, and so on. This is very useful; for later on cross-selling and up-selling.

Get authenticated data for customers

Address verified by GPS

The first experience of the customer is extremely easy and takes less than a minute. Punch in your mobile number, get an OTP and you are in. Once in, you need to fill in your profile data; which includes the address – the address is prefilled by location data by using GPS coordinates. So, the customer does not have to do much.

But, you get very authentic data which later on will help your service technicians in locating the place the customer is in or your service center in shipping the repaired items back to.

Saleswah helps navigate
Navigating to the customer site using GPS data

Customer authenticated installed base data

Since the customer is filling up the installed base data and later authenticated by your service team, this adds hugely to the accuracy of the installed base information.

Think. You currently need your customers to fill up a warranty card and mail it back. How many do, honestly? By letting your customers fill up their information by themselves, you will easily double your installed base data, at no cost.

Understand technician load and efficiency over time

Is there someone in your team who is carrying the load of the entire team? Is there someone, who needs a push? Can we find out which equipment needs a lot of repairs? Can we check if some technician’s repairs need a lot of rework?

Understand equipment failure rate over time

We have seen that within six months of starting to use the CRM, you can start building a “service profile” based on data

Spares usage stats

Spares usage is one of the key functions of a service operation that needs tracking.

Right spares availability at the right time leads to effective repairs, faster call closures, and customer delight. Spares are also a large part of expenses of the service operations and thus, Saleswah CRM devotes a lot of effort to ensure

  • Inventory management of spare parts
  • Easy indenting and approval of parts.
  • Easy tagging spares with equipment so that technicians find it easy to use the right parts to repair the right equipment
  • Track usage of parts while repairing and make it easy to tally inventory.

All updates come thru the app.

Whenever your technician and the customer need to communicate, they can simply message each other -the technician using Saleswah and the customer using the Grahak Setu app can still communicate through messaging. This is on top of all system-generated updates that are sent to the customer with the Grahak Setu app.

Why customers love Grahak Setu

Reduce dependence on the call centre

Now customers do not need to wait for a call center agent to come online, nor worry about miscommunication. Logging service calls have never been easier.

Maintain all equipment data in one place, systematically

Grahak Setu will eventually do away with the need to have paper records of your purchases, the warranty cards, and need to have reminders about when the AMC will be due.

Transparent itemized estimate and ease of payment

The technician in Saleswah creates an itemized repair estimate. The quote goes to the mobile app inbox where it is seen by the customer.

He approves and makes payment from the app itself using a secure payment gateway. On the other side, the Saleswah user immediately knows that the payment is realized as the app changes the ticket status, automatically and pushes it into the rep[air workflow.

GST invoices generated from the system- no need to chase

Repair invoice ready to download from Grahak Setu

The customer does not need to chase up his invoice. For that matter, even you don’t have to take any special efforts to create an invoice- the moment a ticket is closed, the Saleswah system generates a GST tax compliant invoice which is immediately made available in the Grahak Setu app for download.

Security

You only see your own customer data

  1. You get to see only the data of the Grahaks that have signed up and agreed to share their data with you. You can also restrict the privilege of the customer – his ability to

2. You get to see your equipment – supplied by you- in his installed base. Other suppliers see their equipment. None of you get to see each others’ equipment.

3. Secure payment gateway to ensure risk-free payments.

There are two mobile apps in the Playstore that are closely related to Grahak Setu; both were built by us.

  • Initiative Grahak Setu– this is a customized version of the Grahak Setu App; for the exclusive use of Initiative Water, Pune: a pioneer in water treatment equipment like Manual Multiport Valve, Automatic Multiport Valve, Water ATM, Dosing Pumps etc.
  • Saleswah CRM – That’s us; on the playstore. This app works for field sales and field support people- changing interface with the changing roles of the user: sales or service.

Urban Clap (Urban Company): how Grahak Setu is different

Why are we not trying to be another Urban Company?

For answers, you should simply look at the reviews of the app on the Playstore or on this Quora page. Just random viewing, no agenda, no filtering.

The comments highlight an issue with the model.

What did Urban Company set out to do

Urban Clap- now Urban Company– brought together all the neighborhood handymen- plumbers, electricians, hairdressers, and the like on one platform. They were trained in using the service provider app, given some coaching in upselling and cross-selling (my guess), probably personal grooming as well and that became a marketplace cum directory service. Urban Company would take a cut of all the transactions.

Urban Clap (the original name) rebranded itself as Urban Company in 2020 to focus on beauty, spa, grooming, repairs, cleaning, painting, fitness, and yoga.

The business model of Urban Company

Like Uber or Ola take a cut off cab drivers’ earnings. Though you could argue this is more like Oyo model- like Oyo takes a certain part of your monthly “inventory”, Urban Clap takes a part of your daily working hours- it gets you bookings.

This works for generic services. Like plumbing, electrician, even personal grooming (haircuts, etc). Well enough that they have grown fast and big and hardly anyone of us would have not used their services.

The services are not cheap. But, in an urban milieu, with double income families the norm, the relative security of letting someone in your home who has been vetted by a service- has worked in their favour.

Things that are problematic with the Urban Company model

  1. Quality assurance on a grand scale- as the size of the operations increase, it has not been easy to find quality service- providers.
  2. Also, when you repair products, access to genuine spares is required. So, you would find, in many cases, the Urban Company technician would throw up his hands and advise you to contact the manufacturer.

In a nutshell, when it involves repair of an expensive piece of equipment- be it a washing machine, TV, Fridge, Diesel Genset, Security System etc, you need to contact the manufacturer of the equipment.

That’s is what Grahak Setu helps you do.