By Tom Condon, Dynamics 365 Director at Velosio
HVAC sales and field services teams face tremendous pressure in responding to customer requests as quickly as possible. Whether it’s trying to close new business or repairing a broken system, accessing the right information immediately and responding instantly are critical. That’s how HVAC companies build and maintain long-term customer relationships that generate increasing revenues.
Unifying business processes is one of the keys to taking on this challenge. Integrated applications create an environment where managers, sales reps, dispatchers, customer service reps, and field technicians can all tap into information in real time to simplify HVAC workflow and speed up customer responses.
Gaining this capability is critical. The last thing you want is personnel wasting their time—clicking back and forth among multiple applications or searching spreadsheets—to get the data they need to make decisions and to give customers the information they are asking for.
Access Key Information—Just by Opening Email
The Microsoft ecosystem of finance, sales, marketing, customer service, email, office productivity, and collaboration tools provides the perfect way to seize on the opportunity to earn customer loyalty by being responsive to all their needs. The components easily tie together so end-users can quickly access information across the Microsoft ecosystem from any application.
Consider, for example, a salesperson opening Outlook first thing in the morning. They see an email from a general contractor that partners with the firm. The contractor wants to confirm if a payment for a new HVAC system was received from a joint customer. The contractor would also like an update on when the installation will begin.
With Outlook integrated with finance and sales functions in the cloud-based Microsoft Dynamics 365 platform, sales reps can open a window-pane view within Outlook that shows them the status of the customer payment and the scheduled date of the installation. Within an instant, they can communicate this information back to the general contractor. There’s no wasted time jumping into new applications or having to contact someone else in the company to find the answers.
Centralized Hub Communicates Company Announcements and KPIs
In addition to accessing information through Outlook, a unified Microsoft solution allows HVAC firms to access the Microsoft Teams Hub, which provides general company information and key performance indicators. These can include announcements and onboarding procedures for new employees. The hub can also distribute industry news that keeps internal teams informed about the latest HVAC trends.
The leadership team will also appreciate the snapshot views they can get that show how well the company operates. Sales managers, for example, can analyze the status of bids sorted by salesperson, customer, or business unit. They can also see the forecast for the likelihood of pipeline opportunities to close, the amount of business closed over varying time periods, and whether each salesperson is achieving their quota.
Another handy analysis tool is the view of joint-bid success on new HVAC system installations with general contractor partners. Executives can see how well the company is doing by teaming up with specific builders based on their proposal win rates. They can identify who wins the most often and the reasons why.
The KPI tab in Dynamics 365 Sales also shows the status of current projects. Managers can see the progress of those already in motion, whether milestones are being hit, and the reasons for any delays. They can also identify if any outstanding accounts receivable issues need to be addressed.
Frontline Personnel Can Easily Resolve Customer Issues with built-in HVAC Workflow
Customer service reps, project managers, dispatchers, and field technicians might appreciate more than anyone at an HVAC firm how a unified system gives them all the information they need at their fingertips. After all, they feel the most pressure as they interact with customers in real time—whether it’s onsite, over the phone, or through an online chat.
A unified Microsoft ecosystem makes it easy to see who the key players are for each customer and each, partner. It’s also simple to click and identify customer locations, credit status, ongoing tasks, and incidents to resolve.
For dispatchers, they can promptly assign technicians to customer service requests based on skillset, proximity to the customer, and availability. Dynamics 365 also immediately generates work orders with automated HVAC workflow and allows everyone in the company to see the projected time to resolve incidents.
In the field, technicians can confirm schedules and communicate progress on jobs back to the home office. And those updates are also automatically communicated to customers. Technicians also have access to a digital library with instructions, images, and videos of all the steps to take for each repair they handle and any parts they need to replace.
A Demo to See for Yourself
To see just how seamlessly all this can happen, check out this Velosio demo on commercial HVAC solutions powered by the Microsoft ecosystem. Based on our 25+ years of experience in the field services sector—and our expertise across HVAC roles and functions—we build cloud-based and on-premises Microsoft solutions that integrate Dynamics 365, Outlook, Teams and Office applications.
We also understand the mission-critical role of field services, which ultimately runs the business for HVAC firms. That’s why we implement field services solutions just like an ERP implementation—with the discipline for process and data integrations as well as report generation, training, and ongoing support.
To learn more about Microsoft solutions provided by Velosio for HVAC field services firms, you can read all the features here.