2021 Survival Kit: Etiquette for Field Service Calls When Clients Work from Home

Field service calls look different these days in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. From masking up to social distancing, businesses in field service industries...

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A technician on a field service call using his tablet while standing by his truck, he is wearing a face mask and gloves.

Field service calls look different these days in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. From masking up to social distancing, businesses in field service industries have implemented new protocols to protect the health and safety of technicians and clients. Your clients’ work habits may look pretty different too, following historic shifts in the job market in 2020. For most businesses that can function remotely, working from home has become the new norm.

This trend is unlikely to change any time soon because, to put it simply, remote work is working. According to one survey, the percentage of workers around the world that permanently work from home (WFH) is expected to double in 2021. Given this trend, field service technicians need to be prepared to work alongside customers who work from home. 

How Does the WFH Trend Affect Field Service Calls?

When a client works from home and a technician makes a service call, there’s a chance the client’s workday and productivity could be adversely affected. Squash this possibility by adopting a few new guidelines for etiquette on field service calls. When you show clients you can support them and accommodate their professional needs during home visits, you will win their loyalty and help your bottom line at the same time.

Etiquette Tips for 2021: How to Deliver Top-Notch Field Service While Clients WFH

Before the Appointment

Communicate with clients in the days before a service appointment. Let them know what to expect so they can plan accordingly. Be sure to address:

  • Noise level. Will you be using loud power tools or doing a lot of hammering? The client may have an important phone call or Zoom meeting and may need advance warning so they can shift their schedule around.
  • Time. Clearly communicate, and later confirm, the appointment time and date, and provide an estimate for how long the field service call will last.
  • Ask how you can help make the field service call go smoothly for the client. For example, perhaps they’d like you to exit quietly when you’ve finished the job so they can keep working.

Upon Arrival

  • Be on time. This can’t be stressed enough. If you’ll be late, let the client know ASAP. Be aware that you may need to reschedule to accommodate the client’s workday.
  • Wipe your feet before entering the client’s home. If there’s even a slim chance you’ll track dirt or mud in, wear shoe covers, or have tarps or plastic sheeting to lay down a path.
  • Set clear expectations. Quickly go over the time frame and expected noise level for the service once more. Don’t forget to address any accommodations you discussed with the client prior to the day of service.
  • Come fully prepared with everything you might need. In addition to tools of the trade, pack a leak-proof bottle of water (company-branded is best), hand wipes, a step ladder, and an extension cord. See cleaning essentials below.
  • If you need anything from the customer, try to take care of it at this time. If you’ll be there for a while, ask them ahead of time which bathroom you may use.

During Field Service Calls

  • Minimize distractions. Avoid extra chit-chat and small talk; be friendly, but keep communications to a minimum.
  • When you work unsupervised, it’s best to pretend the homeowner is standing behind you the entire time. Treat everything as carefully as possible. You never know what might be a treasure to someone!
  • Don’t leave a mess for the client to clean up. Be prepared by packing your truck with any and every cleaning supply you may need: trash bags, a broom and dustpan, a mop and bucket, cleaning fluid and/or spray, a charged-up dust-buster or stick vacuum, cleaning wipes, towels, etc. Clean these tools after every service call so you don’t take dirty items into the next client’s home.
  • Try to be thoughtful and intuitive; remain flexible to your client’s needs.

These extra efforts will not go unnoticed. When your technicians and clients can work harmoniously side-by-side, your company will win business, positive reviews, and a great reputation.

Boost Business With Your New Service Offerings

Once you’ve incorporated these guidelines into your company’s routine, you can even start attracting new customers by adding a mention to your website and/or paid search ads that your team specializes in serving and accommodating clients who WFH. Call out some of the ways your technicians can help them remain productive while on field service calls.

As the face of your business, field technicians work hard to maintain a delicate balance of being professional, personable, and polite during service calls. RazorSync field service software gives techs the support they need to succeed and allows them to deliver the best service possible. Contact RazorSync for details, or try it free for 14 days.

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