Route optimization is the process of figuring out the most cost-efficient route to get the right technician to the right job at the right time. With route optimization software, field service management organizations can improve efficiency, productivity, customer satisfaction, and return on investment.
Optimal routing considers these necessary variables:
- Turn-by-Turn Directions: Having accurate turn-by-turn directions is integral to optimization. Turn-by-turn directions account for the number of turns to be taken, left and right turns, the type of road to be traveled, and natural boundaries like mountains and bodies of water that need to be crossed.
- Predictive Traffic: By using historic traffic data to predict how long it will take a field service provider to drive from job to job at different times of the day, predictive traffic helps field service management to create an accurately planned schedule, anticipate traffic patterns, and flag road conditions before the day of service.
- Live Traffic Updates: While predictive traffic makes it possible to plan the schedule in advance, live traffic updates facilitate execution on the day of service by getting ahead of unforeseen changes to road conditions and updating the schedule accordingly.
The Optimal Combination
Route optimization software integrates real-time scheduling functionality with a combination of turn-by-turn directions, predictive travel, and live traffic updates. This is the approach that ClickSoftware uses for delivering efficient routes in real time to field service organizations.
ClickSoftware’s approach to route optimization uses predictive traffic for future planning and then adjusts to real time on the day of the field service engagement. ClickSoftware’s scheduling system constantly optimizes schedules while considering all the location information of the mobile workforce and service requests. Routes are then constructed to minimize travel time and maximize efficiency to make sure that technicians are spending less time on the road and more time servicing customers. Dispatchers also receive real-time updates from the mobile workforce.
ClickSoftware differentiates itself in these ways:
- Precision: Click’s route optimization software treats traffic as an important and explicit part of the routing algorithm and makes an important distinction between predictive traffic patterns and real-time traffic information. This enables field workforce management to help precisely pinpoint the travel time it will take a technician to travel between jobs.
- Predictability: ClickSoftware’s scheduling system integrates predictive traffic data and takes drive time into account when creating a schedule to ensure that field service providers are spending more time helping customers than driving from job to job. Predictability facilitates resource capacity planning for field service workforce management, improves customer relationships, and more.
- Real-time Automation: ClickSoftware’s automated solution, paired with live traffic updates, scans real-time road conditions for unforeseen traffic and updates the schedule accordingly. Jobs that need to be rescheduled at the last minute are automatically assigned to an available field service professional that can get to the customer on time.
The Benefits of Route Optimization
Route optimization software is a major advantage for field service organizations and provides significant, measurable results, including:
- Improved Efficiency: Routes are constructed to minimize travel and maximize efficiency. Accurate routing enables the mobile workforce to service more customers per day because they are spending less time driving. Assurance of efficiency also allows field service management to create a balanced sales territory plan and bundle tasks.
- Reduced Travel Time, Fuel Costs, and Staffing: A study from Nissan and the University of California Riverside revealed that by using traffic information in optimization, average travel time was reduced from one hour to 50 minutes. ClickSoftware customers have experienced similar results; average travel time was reduced by 16.2% and average fuel economy was improved by 7.8%. Field service organizations can also see a reduction in overtime costs and the use of contractors with optimization.
- Consistent Service Level Agreement Compliance: Optimization also boosts service level agreement adherence and associated customer satisfaction through predictability of service. By consistently meeting commitments to customers, field service organizations can strengthen customer relationships and avoid service level agreement non-compliance penalties.
Many ClickSoftware customers, including Unisys, Diebold-Nixdorf, Proximus, SBA Communications, Bosch, and cablex, are seeing real benefits from our approach to route optimization. Check out Case Studies for more success stories.
Achieving route optimization involves integrating real-time scheduling functionality with a combination of turn-by-turn directions, predictive traffic, and live traffic updates. This approach to optimization, used by ClickSoftware, enables field service organizations to create efficient routes, adapt to last-minute changes, match job needs with available technicians, and more. In turn, optimization can result in significant cost savings through improved efficiency and also boost return on investment.
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Learn how Click's unique optimization can improve your field service efficiency & customer satisfaction.