Top 3 Benefits of GPS Tracking for Field Service Businesses

By: Justin Guinn on February 10, 2016

Many field service companies like yours rely on technology to manage mobile workers. Perhaps the most crucial technology is GPS tracking for business, which helps monitor and manage employees as they move from job to job.

GPS tracking for business owners and their remote workers is a common capability of most field service management systems, and the operational and financial benefits of this technology are astounding.

Yet an analysis of the consultations we have with field service businesses every day reveals a striking statistic: 70 percent of field service companies don’t use any specialized software, let alone a system with GPS tracking.

Given this, we wanted to showcase the improvements GPS tracking can bring.

Before we dive in, here’s a helpful infographic that highlights the benefits of GPS software for business owners:

Download this infographic

Now, let’s take a closer look at these benefits in action:

Benefit #1: Improve Punctuality

Recently, we surveyed field service business owners who have adopted GPS tracking software to learn what improvements it brought. The greatest benefit revealed in the survey: 95 percent of field service companies that implement GPS tracking software see an increase in mobile workers’ punctuality.

There may not be an industry that puts more emphasis on punctuality than field service. Case in point: A survey of field service customers shows 67 percent of them won’t rehire a company if its workers are up to an hour late.

Of that 67 percent:

  • 11 percent say 15 minutes late is their cutoff

  • 25 percent say 16-30 minutes late is their cutoff

  • 31 percent say 31-60 minutes late is their cutoff

As you can see, it’s crucial that employees in the field are on time to jobs. GPS tracking software offers various tools that increase punctuality, including:

Punctuality Benefits of GPS Software

Smart scheduling:

Allows your back office to schedule a technician’s day based on the proximity of each job. This prevents technicians from wasting time driving back and forth across town.

GPS-enabled dispatching:

In cases where your team has to respond to unscheduled work, this tool lets dispatchers see which remote employee is best for the job, based on their proximity, experience and equipment on hand.

Real-time routing:

As with any consumer navigation system, this feature uses real-time traffic updates to show drivers the best routes from destination to destination.

Benefit #2: Decrease Fuel Costs

In addition to operational advantages, smarter scheduling, dispatching and routing can also bring significant financial benefits. One of the greatest financial perks is that mobile workers use less fuel:

Our survey finds that 89 percent of field service companies experience reduced fuel costs after adopting GPS tracking capabilities.

Many GPS tracking systems also include vehicle monitoring functionality. This allows you to track valuable driving data, such as acceleration and braking, average speed and idling time.

You can also use these systems to ensure workers aren’t using company vehicles for non-work related activities.

With all this data in hand, you can hold your drivers accountable and establish metrics that promote more fuel-efficient driving habits.

A decrease in fuel costs frees up capital that can be spent on other areas of your business—or can simply add to the bottom line. Either way, it can have a huge impact on your company.

Benefit #3: Grow Overall Productivity

Just because businesses using GPS tracking see a decrease in fuel costs doesn’t mean they’re getting fewer jobs done. In fact, these businesses actually see an increase in overall productivity.

According to our survey, 95 percent of businesses report an increase in work orders completed per day after adopting GPS tracking software.

There’s one software capability in particular that drives this: Many GPS tracking systems enable dispatchers to see every piece of equipment each vehicle has in stock. Employees take inventory of their parts and equipment at the beginning of the day, then report when a part is used or if a piece of equipment breaks.

This way, when there’s a job that requires specific parts to complete, dispatchers can ensure the vehicle they send is properly equipped.

This asset-tracking capability—along with the other GPS functionality we discussed—provides an invaluable level of transparency into your field service operations. With this software, managers, dispatchers and remote workers can make the most informed decisions possible.

Next Steps

As you can see from the benefits listed above, GPS tracking software can have an extremely positive effect on your field service business.

It’s definitely worth researching which systems might be right for you and estimating their cost of ownership. Here are some great next steps to help you on your journey:

  • Speak to a Software Advice expert at (855) 998-8505. Our advisors will work with you to narrow down a short list of software products that best meet your specific needs. This free consultation is a Software Advice staple.

  • Take our online field service questionnaire. The field service software market can be rather unwieldy at first. These questions will help us recommend the best field service systems for your business.

  • Read software reviews from your peers. After we’ve helped you determine a short list of systems, take some time to read reviews left by your peers in the industry. These provide valuable, firsthand insights into what it’s like to use these systems day to day.