HomeServe is now using Fast Lean Smart’s mobile scheduling and route planning software for its boiler installations division, with the result that it is getting to its customers 25 per cent faster than before.
Richard Wilson, IT director for boiler installations, HomeServe, said, “We had previously always relied on the personal knowledge of our planning team to know which sales surveyors and engineers would be best suited for a job in terms of geography, availability and skills. We wanted software that could make smarter and faster decisions than our planners.
“A lot of the scheduling tools we looked at were just about filling white space – in other words, finding gaps in people’s diaries to fit in appointments. We wanted a more dynamic tool, one that would be continuously optimised, looking at every appointment and every field worker collectively and scheduling everything in the most optimal way.”
Having researched Fast Lean Smart’s FLS Visitour and FLS Mobile software for real-time scheduling and route optimisation, it began a proof-of-concept (POC) project which included an assessment of the software’s ability to integrate with HomeServe’s back-office systems.
Wilson said, “Integration was a key requirement for us. We needed to know that FLS Visitour could integrate with our service management software. With an FLS pilot, they wire it all in and prove it to you, and we saw immediately that FLS lends itself to integration.
“Most software will do about 80 per cent of what you need or really want it to do. In our case, when we install a boiler, we need to schedule a field engineer to do the installation and an electrician to do the wiring. FLS will link the two jobs, even if they take place on different days. This means that if the installation appointment needs to be changed, FLS will move the electrician appointment simultaneously.”
Winter is the busiest time of the year for boiler installations so HomeServe needed to move from its POC pilot project to live operation very quickly so that everything would be ready in September 2018 before the temperature dropped and calls for new boilers started flooding in.
Wilson said, “FLS is very good on configuration without the need for customisation. We didn’t have the appetite, time or the resources to develop our own boutique functionality. We needed a solution that was already fully functional, which we could tweak to fit our requirements without writing code.
“FLS saves us time in the office, gives us total visibility of who is doing what, and has enabled us to get to our appointments 25 per cent faster than before. It has really highlighted how efficient your scheduling can be when intelligent software does it for you.”