Whether a technician must leave a job site and return later because they didn’t have all the materials needed for the job at hand, or because a break-fix didn’t stick, it’s not an ideal situation for them or their clients. Revisiting sites means a greater expense of time for the technician and a greater expense financially for the end-user. Depending on the circumstances, the need for a site revisit might also compromise the customer’s perception of a tech’s professionalism. These tips should help any tech reduce the need for site revisits as much as possible.
Call Ahead (or Visit Early)
One way to reduce the potential of a site revisit is for the tech to collect at least some necessary information about the job before they arrive by contacting the end-user. Calling ahead accomplishes many goals: it lets everyone on-site know the tech is coming, it gives them an opportunity to ask questions about the job site, and it can set expectations for the workflow and progress of the job before the work even begins. But even better is if the technician has the opportunity to visit the job site first, especially in cases of large deployments or a technical installation like a satellite.
If there’s something a technician thinks they might need, they should bring it along. It’s far better to have to run down to a truck to get a necessary cable, bracket, or tool than it is to have to order it and wait a day or more, or drive across town to buy it at full price. If there are materials or proprietary equipment that’s supposed to be waiting for the technician at the site, part of the tech’s call-ahead or pre-work site survey should be to confirm that those materials are there or are expected to arrive by the time they do.
Look for Other Issues
Once the technician is on-site doing the work, they should keep their eyes peeled for anything that might interfere with the technology functioning as it should. For example, if a tech is updating a company’s router system but can see early on there will be issues with accommodating necessary bandwidth, they shouldn’t just wait for the end user to call back when it isn’t working. When techs address possible incompatibilities and conflicts when they become apparent it saves them time, saves the client money, and earns the client’s trust.
This can even extend to unrelated issues—a tech coming to deploy a new phone system at a hotel might notice something wrong with the Wifi. Mentioning it will help solve a problem for the client before it pops up. That honesty might also earn them more business with the client down the road.
Reducing revisits to a job site isn’t always possible—most technology eventually needs maintenance or upkeep. But many times the need to return to the site can be prevented through early communication with the end-user, careful advance planning, and greater attention to detail during the job itself.
If you’re curious about what other factors technicians should consider to make themselves more marketable, check out our free downloadable e-book, The Technician of Tomorrow, which outlines many of the factors driving our industry today.