Best practices for managing the safety and privacy of customers and mobile workers
The pandemic made delivering certain essential services a lot more challenging: Mobile workers such as plumbers, electricians, utility personnel, and healthcare workers had to exercise much more caution when entering customer homes. Strategies ran from social distancing, masking, and opening windows to working quickly and providing as much information as possible before an appointment — and some of these methods continue on today, creating positive customer experiences.
But even before the pandemic, interacting with and inviting in a stranger (and entering a home as a stranger) was a vulnerable act for both customers and service personnel. The pandemic certainly illuminated the desire for safety and privacy — but it was always there.
So how can your organisation best safeguard your customers and your staff, keeping everyone satisfied and making the day of delivery awesome?
At Localz, we’ve been working on this for years, and we want to share some of our best practices.
How can you help customers feel safer?
When we first started tackling this problem, the world was different. But the solutions we came up with continue to bring ease to our partners and their customers.
Here are some of the features we created and enhanced to help customers feel more comfortable receiving a mobile operative.
- Mobile worker details. Share essential information in advance with a customer about their mobile worker, including photo identification, vehicle registration number, and relevant license credentials.
- Pre-arrival information via notifications and alerts. Automate notifications of who is coming and when — with ETA and place in queue (their estimated position) information that updates in real time — to help reduce a customer’s stress and anxiety about the appointment.
- Real-time updates + ETAs. Once an operative is dispatched, let the customer see when that person will arrive with real-time service tracking. This not only reduces the customer’s anxiety, but it also increases your first-time fix and access rates.
- Two-way communication. Providing two-way communication options allows customers to easily update a mobile worker with important safety and logistical information, such as that they want to mask up, would like extra time to get to the door, or need to provide a gate code.
- Unique one-time PINs. Issue a one-time PIN for deliveries and service appointments to be authorised, approved, and completed — no need for physical contact or signing on a device. Customers can feel secure that the person who has shown up at their door is who they say they are.
- Contactless deliveries. When feasible, allow customers to advise a safe place to leave an item, track its precise arrival, and be notified of delivery so they can take in the package when it arrives — no face-to-face interactions required.
- Confirm, reschedule, or cancel capabilities. Self-service tools to change appointments let customers know you value their time and understand that, sometimes, things just come up.
- Feedback opportunities. Ask for feedback directly at the close of an appointment, then take action in a timely manner when necessary — sitting on bad reviews bodes poorly for customer satisfaction and the longevity of your business.
How can you safeguard your mobile workers?
Tracking employees in the field and sharing their location details with customers can make operatives a bit nervous. And typically, mobile workers don’t want to use their real phone numbers to work with customers — nor should they be texting and driving while en route to a job.
So how can you ensure your service personnel feel that their safety and privacy are respected, while still providing customers with the transparency they crave to feel comfortable?
- Automation. Geo-trigger messages that send automatically to clients, such as when the operative is on the way and an ETA window. This kind of safety GPS tracker allows operatives to focus on the task at hand.
- Two-way communication. Enable multi-party conversations so that a customer can communicate with an operative, but if an operative is driving, a customer service rep can take over and chime in — the customer receives a fast response while the mobile worker’s eyes stay on the road.
- Phone-number masking. Avoid giving away your employees’ personal information on the job by masking numbers. Mobile workers will greatly appreciate this respect for their privacy.
- Varying levels of transparency. Choose a level of privacy of location and information that service personnel are comfortable with, while still keeping customers in the know about their impending appointments. With Localz’ Place in Queue, organisations can choose from four levels of information transparency:
- Place in queue
- Place in queue, plus ETA
- Place in queue, plus ETA, and location
- Place in queue, plus ETA, location, and route planning
Localz can help you protect both customers and operatives
Protecting your team and your customers is serious business. At Localz, we’re here to make the day of service awesome — and we know that can’t happen if someone feels unsafe or anxious about it.
Our team is focused on using our technology to help clients serve their customers better. Empowering customers with information, autonomy, transparency, and self-service options offers an experience that puts them at ease and makes the vulnerability of receiving a service worker manageable and enjoyable. And curating the level of security for your mobile workers shows that you respect their privacy and allows them to be more efficient at their job.
It’s a win-win, and Localz’ modular, highly configurable solutions set you up to meet everyone’s needs — without overhauling your tech stack. From secure web-based portals where customers can make changes to appointments and find out more about their technician to real-time tracking updates, Place in Queue services, and omnichannel communication options, we offer day-of-service interactions that safeguard both customers and service personnel.