Barrett Coakley | 08.14.18
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Editor's note: This blog is a part of a series called "How Home Healthcare Providers Can Benefit from Field Service Management Software." Read the previous blog here.

Given that home healthcare aides (HHAs) spend the majority of their time in the field caring for patients, it is important that you have the ability to communicate with them. This is where mobile workforce management (MWFM) functionality in an FSM solution provides true value. With access to information everywhere and anywhere, mobility empowers caregivers in many ways.  It could be new information about a patient, a cancelation, mobile training, or even a real-time traffic update to help the HHA arrive for an appointment on time. It can also help your HHAs feel more connected to the organization, helping to increase employee satisfaction.

Mobile devices can also help you recruit new caregivers. As you know, there is a shortage of caregivers in the marketplace. However, the millennial generation might be the solution to this shortage as many of them have expressed interest in the field. However, millennials have little tolerance for outdated or inefficient processes that get between them and the work they truly care about doing. That means unnecessary time doing paperwork, or time on the road following poorly planned routes, will lead to dissatisfaction on the job, and has the potential to deter them from joining a firm in the first place.

Technology is key to engagement and satisfaction. Implementing current technology can help your organization recruit this digitally native generation. Baby boomers show skepticism towards new workplace technology, but millennials are comfortable using technology in almost every part of their lives. A survey of 1,000 millennials conducted by Microsoft showed that 93 percent cited modern and up-to-date technology as one of the most important aspects of a workplace.

Mobile technology is no longer a nice-to-have, but rather a competitive differentiator that every home provider should deploy. Read the case study below to learn how Bosch Communication Center, a division of the German based Bosch Group utilized MWFM to improve operations.

Case Study: How MFWM Helped Bosch Communication Improve Customer Service

As part of this service offering, Bosch Communication Center develops customized after-sales service management. In this capacity, the company launched a project to enhance dispatch operations for Junkers Heating Systems, a market-leader in Germany in domestic and corporate gas and electricity fired boilers. With 100 of its own service engineers and 40 external partners that also provide services on heating systems, Junkers must tightly manage service operations to ensure premium customer service while also limiting costs.

The Challenge

Junkers and Bosch were challenged to both improve customer service and maximize productivity through greater call center efficiencies. The typical customer case would last approximately 15 minutes and service reps were not able to give customers an appointment during the call. The rep would instead need to manually check engineer schedules and then call the customer back.

Compounding the problem was the time consuming and painstaking process for entering job and billing information into Bosch’s backend systems. Without an integrated mobile solution, Junkers field engineers had to call in job statuses and fill out paper reports at job completion, all of which had to be entered into Bosch’s systems by hand. Manual information entry was quite inefficient and its effects were felt throughout the whole process.

Bosch realized that reducing call times and making it possible for Bosch to issue an immediate appointment would be of key importance in improving the overall level of customer service. The company also noted that the integration of a mobile component to enable automation of the many back office processes that were then manually driven would lead to greater productivity. Bosch and Junkers then set out to find the scheduling solution that would meet both of these needs.

The Benefits

Bosch and Junkers derived many benefits from the MWFM solution, including:

  • 50% increase in call-center productivity
  • 90% of customer appointments automatically scheduled at time of call
  • Less travel time between jobs, and thereby travel cost reduced
  • More efficient scheduling and utilization of engineers
  • Seamless transfer of information resulting in improved back office productivity

Home healthcare providers who want to be successful need to invest in the technologies that can improve operations, engagement, and efficiency. With MWFM solutions, providers can improve in these areas while also delivering exceptional care that meets and exceeds a patient and family expectations.