Customers today have become more demanding, or empowered, or a combination of the two–but one thing is certain: they expect a lot more from companies. Even when completing low priority tasks like ordering food, or searching for a movie, customers want zero problems and total transparency.
Most industries have adjusted to these expectations by offering memorable customer experiences (CX) with end-to-end communication, and access to real-time information. This is why it’s weird that some industries still seem stuck in neutral, offering up the same weak old CX.
The Home Service CX Struggle
Maybe the satellite dish is down, or the pipes’ burst, or your husband tried to go all HGTV and accidentally cuts the power–whatever the issue, dealing with home repair can seem as overwhelming and frustrating as the accident itself.
When calling your telco company for assistance, most homeowners encounter one of two scenarios:
You’re either greeted by an automated voice messaging system that puts you through a gauntlet of security questions.
You are put on hold for what seems like an eternity, left listening to an endless loop of mindless, elevator music.
Somewhere between several minutes and a few hours later, you finally reach a live client service representative. This person, with the best of intentions, often repeatedly mispronounces your name, puts you back on hold, and then asks you to volunteer your time to help fix the problem.
“Try clicking here and here.”
“Can you bend down and see the leak?”
“What does it say on the inside panel of your circuit breaker?”
If you make it to this stage in the process, you have essentially acquired a new unpaid job in an area you know nothing about.
A home service company should never have their own clients helping with home repairs. Imagine a doctor asking her patient to hold an instrument during surgery, or a mechanic asking his customer to pop open the hood of the car and inspect the engine!
3rd-Party Contractors and The Peril Of Disconnected Systems
When a service technician is finally dispatched to a job site, he or she is often a 3rd-party independent contractor working for many home service companies.
3rd-party contractors are increasingly selected by companies looking to expand their market share. In fact, by 2020 over 40% of field service work will be performed by technicians who are not employees of the organization that has direct contact with the customer.
What does this have to do with bad customer experience?
Though contractors are not always the reason behind a poor CX, they are often blamed for it anyway. By virtue of a broken home service system, customers struggle to schedule time with their technicians, and vice-versa.
It’s especially frustrating that customers will typically take an entire day just waiting around to let the technician in the front door. That delay can cause serious damage to the technician’s reputation and their employer’s brand. Whenever there is a long wait, customer anxiety naturally sets in–and a routine service job can get off to a rocky start even before the technician arrives onsite (if they arrive at all).
And if a home repair job requires more than one visit, you might get different technicians, each needing to start over from square one. All of a sudden your initial call becomes a multi-day project, spanning across several contractors.
Yet, it’s not just the customers that find themselves at a loss. Home service companies, franchises, and independent contractors are often left in the dark with little to no communication between one another. They are often left asking:
How can I build my reputation as an independent contractor?
How did Sheila do on that job for us this morning?
Is our brand being presented uniformly by all of our 3rd-party technicians?
Fear Not, The All-In-One Tool Kit For The Home Service Space
Thankfully, companies like Dispatch connects customers, 3rd-party technicians, and companies all in one integrated system.
Customers can talk and message with contractors, receive automatic appointment reminders, one-click calendar invites, ‘On-My-Way’ notifications via text, and a much-needed peace of mind about who the contractor is and when they’re arriving.
Customers do not have to download any app because every piece of information is provided through a web-based link where all their job details are provided. All of this transparency helps reduce customer no-shows by 86%.
With Dispatch’s mobile messaging service, both customers, contractors, and their companies are able to share photos and notes with all parties involved. This level of transparency and access has proven to increase NPS scores by 35%.
Back to the Future
Dispatch provides modern day solutions to old world home service problems. If you are interested in learning more, schedule some time with us and let’s see how we can help.