If you are in the HVAC world, peak season is either here or rapidly approaching. This is the time of year when you and your team have the opportunity to put some money in the bank, while at the same time truly helping customers in need. It is also the time when you, like most contractors, have “too many calls” coming your way. Having a plan in place to prioritize your calls is critical if you’re going to capitalize on the opportunities that come with peak season.
Many contractors have told me (and indeed, many have written within their mission statements), that they are a “quality over quantity-based company.” That tends to go out the window in peak season. More often than not, companies focus on running all the calls they can, regardless of the job. This is in direct conflict with call center best practices, which emphasize running the right calls, with the right technicians, and delivering a quality experience every time.
You’ll have to decide what the best calls for your company are. These would typically be the calls coming from customers in the most need that at the same time represent the best conversion or money generating opportunities. Do you and your team members know what these calls are?
If you thought about that for longer than a few seconds, I encourage you to pose the same question to your call center teams. Then, ask your service technicians. You may be surprised by their responses. I’ll often see companies place demand service calls with nonworking systems behind that of working systems. Others simply have a “first come, first served” system for determining which calls they will indeed run. This can lead to less than stellar “peak performance,” and often outright disaster.
You can easily craft a priority matrix for your company by listing out all the types of calls your company generally responds to. The, you would list out the best opportunity calls. Some notable examples may include older, nonworking equipment, grounded out compressors, units that are tripping the breaker, units that have required refrigerant on multiple occasions, or systems which have had many repairs.
On a scale of one to five, rank all the types of calls you receive. This way everyone is clear about the calls that are the most valuable to your organization. You could also discuss the calls that may net a lower return as well, which may include rental/tenant properties, real estate transactions, do it yourself customers, or those without a start date for larger scopes of work.
The point is, you only have so many technicians, and with an influx of calls it is even more important to make sure you are intentional about the calls you are running. This will ultimately decrease the chances of experiencing employee burn out, produce a more efficient team, and increase the bottom line during this most important time of the year.
Publication date: 6/8/2018