Modernize (www.modernize.com, 888/990-6016) is a residential home services lead generator software solution, that matches homeowners looking for specialty pros in a specific geographic area with contractors enrolled in the system who work in that region. The home services performance marketing platform also includes content designed to educate homeowners on heating system types and top AC and furnace brands along with a calculator useful for their estimating of cost of an HVAC project.
How it Works
Modernize provides a querying homeowner with referrals to local contractors by emailing a list of providers who might respond (or notification that none are within the area). Each qualifying contractor is immediately emailed the request and, after reviewing details of the request, can reach out to the homeowner if interested.
When the homeowner is ready to connect with the contractor(s), the homeowner lets Modernize know and Modernize alerts the contractor(s), enabling the sales team to call the homeowner to schedule an in-home sales appointment or otherwise proceed.
To help handle homeowner phone inquiries that arrive outside of regular business hours, Modernize integrates Connect (www.modernize.com/pros), a complimentary automated messaging platform (to be used in conjunction with Modernize leads that helps contractors easily follow up on phone leads that come both during business hours and when the business is not open. It immediately communicates with homeowners with an automated customizable message via text, email or phone call (autocall) via an automated immediate response of assurance that the contractor is aware and will be in touch when business re-opens. Texts and emails are fully customizable, with recommended pre-loaded templates.
How the Autocall Works
When an inquiry comes into your business, an auto call is made to you, with a welcome message saying the name of the homeowner. If you answer the call, an auto call is made to the homeowner, conferencing you together.
Homeowners can communicate with a contractor through Connect via their preferred method: text, email, or phone.
Contractors can send up to four follow-ups, which are triggered only if the homeowner did not engage with previous communication. If there is homeowner engagement by text, call, or email, all follow-ups pause.
Modernize is offered in three tiers: small business, regional, and enterprise.
ServiceBox (www.getservicebox.com), 888/727-4983) is cloud-based software for managing the workflow of small to medium sized service-based businesses. Features include quoting and work orders, with the ability to add notes, checklists and photos; scheduling and dispatch utilizing a drag & drop calendar and built-in GPS to select the closest technician or team to an emergency job; a mobile app; mobile timesheets based on check in/check out of the employee on the mobile app, preventive maintenance agreements, inventory management, a customer portal through which a customer can enter service requests, and the ability to take payment in the field.
Management can schedule one time and recurring to-do’s for a specific employee. Quotes to customers can show or hide price breakdowns and include attachments and a request for signature. Schedulers can track payments before setting up another job and identify customers with service agreements to prioritize appointments. Recurring maintenance contracts can be programmed to automatically self-populate in the scheduler/dispatcher.
When in dispatcher mode, dropping work orders onto the calendar automatically dispatches jobsite and work order information to a tech’s mobile device.
Time and material work orders can be converted into invoices with a single click. Customers can pay either directly by credit card onsite through the software’s invoice email pay button or through a handheld credit card device.
An inventory module enables users to program automatic reorder points for equipment that is tracked from warehouse to office to truck to job to used status.
Report types include customer, work order, invoice, and inventory. ServiceBox integrates with QuickBooks Desktop and Online and Sage 50 Accounting (Canada).
ServiceBox uses a per user/per month pricing platform. There is free onboarding guidance for administrators and a free demo available.
Sentrien is a cloud-based field service management solution for commercial HVACR businesses (www.sentriencom, 888/682-5662) unified directly into Oracle NetSuite platform (a leading ERP accounting solution for the mid-market businesses). It provides companies the ability to manage their field operations from one central location. Suitable for companies running multiple trucks, Sentrien’s unified platform automates processes, integrates field operations, and gives real-time job costing across the entire company.
The solution includes integrated scheduling and dispatch for new installations, preventative maintenance, and emergency service calls, provides warranty service metrics, and integrates customer field asset tracking for full equipment life-cycle monitoring.
Dispatchers can see the status of all jobs including unassigned, in-progress, paused, and completed. Enterprise companies can choose to auto-schedule their entire field force. Once routed, the system sends each technician their assigned jobs via IOS or Android devices and provides integrated directions to the customer site via Google or Apple maps.
Mobile entry includes job time, materials, equipment, photos, signature approval, and expense reporting. For areas without cell service, Sentrien’s mobile application allows data entry when off-line.
Report types include key performance metrics, unscheduled work orders, work orders pending billing, and work orders not completed by a requested date/time. Other reports include comprehensive inventory management, technician utilization, best performers, and project profitability.
Sentrien is an annual subscription based on the number of technicians and trucks (e.g. 3 or fewer technicians through multi-state companies operating hundreds of trucks). Separate purchase subscription to Oracle NetSuite required.
Patti Feldman writes articles and web content for trade magazines and manufacturers of building products. She can be reached at [email protected].