When Riverside found themselves struggling to manage their repairs appointments, Software and services company Advanced stepped in with their Dynamic Resource Scheduler. Its implementation allowed Riverside to continue with their drive to modernise and improve the customer experience
However, prior to using Dynamic Resource Scheduler (DRS) from Advanced, for repairs, they used simple appointment slots based on a fixed number of trades per day.
This meant their contact centre could fill up these slots but with no idea what the resulting journey might look like. Planners were then left to manage the reality of impossible journeys.
This of course led to letting customers down and pushing the work into tomorrow, which further compounded the problem.
DRS solved this by offering intelligent, guided bookings at the first point of contact, removing the need for planners to intervene on the majority of jobs.
The travel is now taken into account at the very beginning of the booking process, which has massively reduced letting down customers.
The pandemic’s impact on services
Government protocols and lockdowns during 2020 caused unprecedented challenges.
Repair services still needed access to the property to work, and with complete social distancing in place this meant a solution was needed that could adapt to the changing landscape and still retain the simple guided approach that has served so well during normal times.
Using native functionality, we are able to safely restrict work based on the impact of COVID-19 symptoms, whether it was a member of a household where the work is due to take place, or the worker themselves.
“Specific functions of DRS included the ability to add warnings which gave our workforce, schedulers, and operatives a notification if customers had COVID-19 symptoms,” says Lesley Doran, our head of office functions.
“So we could wait for the 14 day isolation period. We segregate a list of things that we couldn’t do due to COVID-19, so when isolation was over, we already had a log of what needed to be done.”
We could close diaries for workers should they themselves have COVID-19. Giving the workforce confidence knowing that all these measures were in place to keep them safe.
Priority template mapping also allowed us to limit the type of work that could be booked, giving more urgent jobs priority over non-urgent ones.
“Due to COVID-19, customers were waiting longer but they still needed repairs and still had service expectations,” Lesley says.
“We are proud to say that with all the complications we still kept a consistent level of customer satisfaction, despite challenges we faced over the last 14 months.”
The suspended job lists feature in Dynamic Views allowed us to have full visibility of the work that needed to be rebooked once restrictions began to ease.
It meant we could have the right workforce available with the confidence that nothing would slip through the cracks.
Innovating the way we work
Previously, the process of training planners with the required knowledge and geographical experience took months, and recruiting new planners was a daunting task.
Now, planners no longer need to have as much input due to DRS, which makes their job easier.
We have mitigated the higher stress levels previously experienced by planners using manual systems which can often contribute to higher staff churn.
DRS removes the need for planning decisions for a large proportion of appointment bookings and the Guided Bookings feature ensures the right person gets to the right job, every time.
The move from paper to digital
When we initially deployed DRS there were concerns: Is it being used to track what work is being done? But, as time progressed its benefits were proven.
Trust was built within the workforce and operatives understood that it was there to help them and make their lives easier.
Daily visits to the office to collect and return items are now a thing of the past.
“If an operative had an emergency repair, they no longer had to grab a pen and paper to write everything down – this is now all handled by the app”
In turn this has reduced the amount of duplications as planners no longer have to manually enter the job sheets into the back-office system.
For supervisors, this digital shift allowed them to focus on their teams, and provide higher value through on-site support, helping the planning team, and more time to focus more on reporting and productivity.
DRS and Job Manager
Combining DRS with job manager, Advanced’s mobile workforce management solution, has allowed us to share information seamlessly between office-based teams and field workers, providing real-time visibility for all staff and operatives.
In tandem with job manager, DRS can enforce data collection using mandatory fields, for example risk assessments or customer signatures.
This ensures mission critical data is never missed.
At Riverside we now use appointment confirmations and reminder text messages along with Operative On Way to deliver a first class customer service.
We can provide real time updates on the progress of the operative, and allow customers to manage their day in the same stroke seen in the growth of online shopping and delivery tracking.
The live tracking function is proving a hit with customers, no more waiting around and not knowing when the plumber will arrive!
The ability to send out additional safety information regarding COVID-19 contributed to Riverside winning the CIH award in late 2020.
Thanks to DRS and job manager we didn’t have to put our aspirations on hold whilst things around us were changing.
Planning for the future means we are constantly reviewing processes and procedures to strive for customer satisfaction through improvements to repairs delivery.
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