6 Tips For Improving Workforce Response Times

4 min read
Ryan Bullard
Ryan Bullard
May 12, 2015
6 Tips For Improving Workforce Response Times
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Most IT service providers are familiar with the benefits of an on-demand workforce (increased market coverage, agile workforce, financial flexibility and the list goes on). It’s no surprise then that I lot of the companies I talk to on a daily basis ask me how they can best make the transition to an on-demand workforce.

They know building an agile and nimble workforce is critical to remaining competitive in a hyper-responsive service world and outperforming their competitors. A recent study by Oxford Economics found that 83 percent of service executives are planning to increase their use of independent workers.

Fortunately, making the transition to a flexible workforce isn’t as overwhelming as you might think. Whether you’ve got an aggressive timetable or are opting to take a more conservative approach, we’ve crafted a simple framework that you can follow to make sure your organization has considered every aspect of building an effective on-demand workforce.

1. Determine Talent Requirements

What types of technicians are you looking for? What types of skill sets and capabilities do they need? Are certifications and insurance required? These are some of the things you’ll need to think through when evaluating talent needs. Review what skills you would expect of a field technician that you would bring on full time. Are there tests that you provide them to verify knowledge? What type of experience do they need? You also should not overlook soft skills, as these contractors will be representing your brand with your customers. Lastly, it’s important to have a grasp on local market and contractor rates so you can plan your budget accordingly.

2. Identify Coverage Needs

What is your existing market coverage? What are your biggest coverage gaps and in which regions are you looking to expand? Are there markets where you’re turning down work or where your team is under-utilized? These are all questions you’ll need to explore when crafting your plan to transition to an on-demand workforce.

3. Implement Compliance Controls

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Worker classification has emerged as one of the biggest storylines with the surging freelance economy. Are you properly distinguishing and classifying your W-2 employees from your 1099 contractors? Service providers utilizing a freelance workforce must be proactive in ensuring compliance with state and federal labor guidelines.

Do you have proper reporting in place? Will you be able to access up-to-date audit trails should you need them? By implementing compliance controls into your vetting, recruitment and management processes, you can greatly mitigate your misclassification risk.

4. Ensure Process Alignment

What new processes will you be creating to facilitate the management of your on-demand workforce? You need to determine the roles and responsibilities of key stakeholders to ensure proper process alignment. Who’s going to own managing onsite arrivals? Do technicians check in with you or your customer? Do you have a help desk for the technician to call if there are issues onsite? Who ultimately is responsible for successful delivery?

Map out your process from end to end and understand who will manage each aspect of the workflows – dispatching, onboarding, check-ins, exceptions, approval, invoicing — to ensure that you’re carefully managing every aspect of service delivery, maintaining continuity with existing workflows and delivering exceptional customer experiences.

5. Formulate Execution Plan

When you’re ready to put your plan in action, you’ll need to ensure you’ve defined how you will measure success. What cost and value metrics will you report on and how do you plan to objectively measure it. Be sure to conduct weekly and monthly reviews to gauge the progress of your roll-out and measure success. Create automated data reports that allow you to proactively identify areas of improvement, refine your tactical execution and deliver bottom-line value to the business.

6. Choose the Right Technology (& Partner)

Now that you’ve fully formulated your strategic and tactical plans, you’ll need to look for a technology solution that can seamlessly enable your transition. Naturally, you’ll want to find a SaaS platform so you can benefit from a quick, easy and affordable solution. It’s also helpful to enlist the help of workforce experts with plenty of industry experience who can walk you through the process, prepare your team and provide best practices on making the transition to an on-demand workforce.

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Today’s top IT service providers are finding that on-demand workforce technology, like WorkMarket, is helping them revolutionize every aspect of their service operation, all the way from recruitment and on-boarding to training and dispatching.

The powerful, but easy-to-use technology addresses every component of the 6-step framework referenced above and is helping service companies prepare for success in a modern world.

To take the first step in building your on-demand workforce, register for a Risk-Free Trial or download our new report to learn how top IT service providers are using an on-demand workforce to thrive in a turbulent service world.