Field reps spend at least 13% of their day driving from place to place. While this may not seem like a large part of their day, it is a vital one. Any delays in their transportation time may cause a delay in customer visits or even cause reps to miss visiting a customer altogether. The question of holding reps accountable to making these visits also remains- how do you ensure that your reps visit their customers as promised?
Enter location intelligence. Cloud use and SaaS delivery models are quickly becoming widespread amongst field-based businesses, and with their rise, Field Activity Management (FAM) software is becoming increasingly popular. FAM software increases accountability in the field becauses through an increase in visibility through GPS tracking for your reps. With this, you can always see where your reps are, allowing you to adjust to any obstacles and make the best use of your reps’ time.
More importantly, FAM software provides you with a better understanding of the day-to-day operations of your field reps. You can essentially “see what your reps see.” According to Field Service Business, it can also “improve operations […] integrate with other […] existing technology […] enabling greater competitive advantage.”
Let’s take a look at the other benefits of increased visibility through location intelligence:
Efficiency. Territory management is also an important factor in the logistics of your company. GPS tracking can help you evaluate and adjust your territory management plan to maximize efficiency- since it collects data on your reps’ mileage and location, you can pinpoint where to adjust your plan to decrease travel time.
Accountability. With GPS tracking, your rep is held accountable for every client visit they make. It increases accountability because if they fail to visit a client, you’ll be able to see. There have been stories of reps that have merchandising displays stocked in their basement- a testament to all of the client visits they haven’t completed. In addition, not only will your reps seek to visit their set amount of clients, but they will try and visit more if possible, because increased visibility results in an increase in motivation.
Customer Service. Increased accountability results in better quality customer service because your reps will be timely with visits and even increase client visits. visit more clients and try to be more on time. If there are any delays, back-office users can send another rep to the client or notify the client so that they are not kept waiting.
Sustainability. This is a major buzzword in the industry right now, as more and more companies are engaging in environmentally-friendly practices. You can lower your carbon footprint by allocating your resources well through efficient territory management practices.
Since 78% of Chief Supply Chain Officers say that improving supply chain visibility is a top priority, location intelligence is a tool field-based businesses should take advantage of. The back office has greater visibility of their field reps, allowing them to see the everyday actions of their reps. By using cloud-based location intelligence platforms and GPS tracking via FAM software, you can stay one step ahead of both your competitors and your next challenge, offering you an important competitive advantage.
Nancy Chen is a Content Marketing Intern at Repsly, Inc. and is currently completing a Marketing degree at Northeastern University. A contributor to the national online publication Spoon University, she is experienced in delivering knowledgable, quality material to readers.