Imagine if you could keep an eagle eye on mobile employees’ progress throughout their working day, safe in the knowledge that everyone’s pulling their weight and following the correct procedures to a T.
Imagine if you could respond instantly to what’s happening in the field, rapidly assessing and adapting your strategy for maximum impact on the fly.
Imagine if you had a fair, reliable, straightforward system for evaluating individual performance and giving insightful, responsive feedback that helps your team to get better all the time.
And imagine that you could do all of this without becoming the micromanaging boss from hell – in fact, without having to call or chase your team for updates while they’re out working.
Sound too good to be true?
In fact, it’s even better than that.
Field Force Automation technology is winning converts from the utility and telecommunication industries the world over - and rightly so.
According to PwC, utility companies that took the plunge into mobile technology early on have already seen an impressive 20%-30% increase in productivity.
Why? Because, as PwC puts it, mobile technology “fundamentally alter[s] the process of how work gets done.”
Put simply, Field Force Automation is a system that allows you to capture data and service information or place sales orders while you’re out in the field.
It’s all linked up via an internet (or other wireless) connection, and the best options allow you to roll out a consistent platform across almost any device, including smartphones, tablets and handheld PDAs.
Using this approach, sales reps scrap the hassles of physical paperwork and enter details directly into the system. Meanwhile, back at HQ, you use the technology’s GPS tracking and central dashboards to check out where employees are, where they’re making the most sales, and whether they’re on track to hit their targets.
So why is this such a game changer?
Field Force Automation is so effective because it allows you to distribute your team tactically across a territory, allocating leads swiftly, fairly and strategically – without employees treading on each other’s toes.
It speeds up the sales process itself, helping agents to strike while the iron’s hot - closing the deal without the hassles and delays that can so often lead to lost opportunities.
It means that reps in the field can access vital information in real time, run credit checks and tap into customer order histories while they’re still out there with the customer, making sure payments have gone through and SMS or email confirmations have been received – all of which helps to make clients feel well-looked after and satisfied with their experience.
It means that your team can hit lead after lead, sale after sale, without getting bogged down by paperwork on the way.
And it helps to eliminate the omissions, inaccuracies and losses that so often crop up when data is manually re-entered at several points along the chain, or copied from paperwork at a later date when it’s no longer fresh in the mind.
Plus, getting much of the process out of the way on the spot has added benefits for your cash flow.
That’s because, in many cases, Field Force Automation includes options or modules that allow invoices to be automatically generated and emailed to the client on the spot, streamlining the billing process and helping to cut down debtor days in the process.
And, of course, because your team aren’t worrying about duplicating admin or following up with invoices when they get back to the office, you can get through a greater workload in a smaller timeframe, with fewer staff and resources - helping you to cut costs, boost efficiency and keep your team lean, agile, productive and compliant to regulations.
All of which leaves your sales reps to spend more time doing what they’re hired to do: sell.
Want to find out more on how utility firms are boosting productivity with mobile technology? Click here to download your FREE ebook, How Sales Managers Supercharge Sales Efficiency.