Building and Maintaining a Trusted Team of Technicians - Striven

The Takeoff Blog Logo

Your source for business management and technology success. Write for us.

Building and Maintaining a Trusted Team of Technicians

Matt Bernot
October 14, 2020
9 min read

Right now, many businesses in the American economy are taking a page from the field services playbook. Employees are scattered across county lines, customers require an inflexible degree of personalized—and safe—service, and remote technology has become a requirement. As field service businesses continue to adapt to these trends, one thing becomes clear: it’s more important than ever to find and retain trusted technicians.

No matter what type of service you provide, your business relies on trust. Your technicians are an extension of your business—you’re trusting them to execute the goals you’ve set out to achieve. Their professionalism—or lack there of—will represent your business in the eyes of your customers. In fact, for your customers, your technicians are your business. As customers are increasingly diligent about who enters their personal space, your technicians need to be more reliable than ever.

Professionalism is a controlled variable. It’s a practice that your employees have the ability to engage in at all times. But even for the most professional workers, uncontrollable errors and discrepancies always find a way to seep their seedy fingers into your plans. No business, industry, or human being is immune to that. What you can control, however, is how well you prepare your technicians for the task at hand and how in tune you are with the progress of each job so that errors and discrepancies can be kept to a minimum.

By using the best tools at your disposal, you can be sure that you’re doing everything in your power to plan for success while preparing for the inevitable hurdles that pop up alothe way. With the proper field services management software, you can: 

  • Dispatch the right employee to the right location at the right time.
  • Track the status of each job.
  • Improve your hiring process.
  • Get new employees up to speed without sacrificing additional resources.

By knowing how each of your employees work best and by clearly defining their roles, you can confidently manage from a distance knowing customers are being optimally serviced.

Your Technicians Are Your Ambassadors

Your primary focus as a business owner is to generate revenue by means of continued customer satisfaction. The most prominent impression that your business will leave on customers derives from the experience provided by the field technicians who provide services in homes and workplaces every single day. It’s not just where satisfied customers come from—trustworthy service leads directly to referrals.

So what is the best way to facilitate the web of trust between you, your field techs, and the customer? It starts with adapting a mindset of personal responsibility. As a business owner, show your employees that trust and transparency is a two way street. They may be hesitant about being monitored on a granular scale out of fear of being micromanaged—avoiding micromanagement is very important—so allow them to gain insight into your workflow, too.

Establish the idea that transparency is in everyone’s best interest. It won’t happen overnight, and it certainly won’t happen without investing in the proper resources. By investing in technology that will empower your employees to work their best, they’ll reciprocate by investing themselves in their work. While the process of establishing trust starts with you as a human being, here are some ways that technology can be a means to that end:

Outgrow Your Old Organizational Habits

“By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.” Though Ben Franklin specialized more in politics than field service management, he had his hand in creating Philadelphia’s first fire company—talk about the importance of prompt and successful service in the field.

People don’t prepare and plan in the same ways. Some of your employees are apt in seeing your business’s larger picture and are able to efficiently plan their days—or weeks, or months—accordingly. Others need to take a much more gradual approach, hour by hour. As their boss, you should know as much about their work habits.

With the right field services assistant app, your technicians can have a schedule optimized for them. Assign tasks tailored to each employee based on their certifications, performance history, and—often most importantly—their current geography. Prompt service leads to pleased customers. 

With the right field services assistant app, your technicians can have a schedule optimized for them. Assign tasks tailored to each employee based on their certifications, performance history, and—often most importantly—their current geography. Prompt service leads to pleased customers. 

Sometimes organization will come in the form of mapping out quarterly goals; other times it will take the shape of breaking down days hour by hour. Regardless of the timeline, give your employees performance reviews and feedback. Beyond putting your employees in direct position for success, you’ll be able to maintain a flexible, universal calendar that you can adjust on the fly. This level of maneuverability that you’ll have at your disposal ensures that nothing slips through the cracks. 

Planning For Growth and Turnover

While your goal is certainly to spend more time onboarding employees than offboarding them, cloud technology will give you the tool kit to prepare you for both inevitabilities. More likely than not, the methods and systems you use to hire your personnel is not integrated into the rest of your business’s technology. Considering the importance of hiring the right people, shouldn’t this process be in sync with the rest of your operations? With proper field service management software, it is.

58% of field service professionals say their top pressure is competition.  As you know, your business isn’t the only game in town. With the field services industry gaining traction each day, it is your responsibility to separate yourself from your competitors.

As your business grows, make sure that your hiring technology has a leg up on the competition. Offer your candidates unique skill assessments tailored to your business’s real day-to-day needs, not just cookie cutter interview questions. Once you make the right hire, streamline their training within the same system so that they aren’t overwhelmed on day one. The premise is simple: a better hiring process makes your business stand out amongst the competition. 

At the end of the day, if you do right by your employees—past, present, and future—they will do right by you and your business. The more you invest in these processes, the more your business will gain.

Ask About Their Needs

Take the time to ask your employees questions. Ask them what they think they need to have a more productive workday, what they like and dislike about their current role, and—the most difficult of all—ask them what changes they want to see from you, their boss. It’s nearly impossible to build trust without having the truly tough conversations. 

Tough and awkward conversations are best handled delicately. It might behoove you to use the technology at your disposal to send personalized questions and surveys to your employees digitally as opposed to asking them from across a desk. Odds are both of you will feel more comfortable this way—you may even receive more honest feedback.

By being empathic and open with your employees, they will feel better about the work that they do. If you made a decision that didn’t pan out, own up to it. Show your employees that when things go south, the best path forward is to learn from the mistake and move on. Walking the walk of vulnerability and personal responsibility will trickle down to the way your employees handle themselves, ultimately fueling the fire of productivity. 

Dispatch With Confidence

Each job that you tackle will come with its own unique challenges. Sometimes jobs will go smoothly, and sometimes they will be a bit hectic—Murphy’s Law bets on the latter scenario. When trouble arises, count on your software to be there for you. When you’re able to have a uniform system that your employees can lean on 24 hours a day, they will be empowered to do their best in their respective roles. And while no one employee will determine the outcome of your business, the collective effort of your empowered and trusted employees will allow your business to adapt to all of the challenges that lie ahead. 

Trust is fragile—it takes time to build, but it can break down almost instantaneously. Utilizing the technologies at your disposal to lay the groundwork of success is necessary, but lasting success ultimately lies with you and your employees putting trust in each other. Stay diligent in your efforts and true to your process—help your employees be the best they can be.

Matt Bernot Headshot

Matt Bernot

Matt Bernot has spent the past eight years working in software, banking, and finance. He specializes in business technology solutions and teaching efficient processes to help organizations accomplish more. Matt is a huge fan of the Philadelphia Flyers and a father to a pair of incredibly goofy cats.