The decision of whether to charge customers based on parts and labor or to charge a flat rate for a given service is nothing new for field service companies. Even if your field service business is already structuring billing around parts and labor, exploring the perks of flat rate pricing can be beneficial—especially when it comes to implementing a billing process that benefits both your business and your customers.
Eliminate Guesswork for You and Your Customers
An immediate benefit of flat rate pricing is the confidence that comes with knowing exactly what to charge for a service, each and every time. When your technician arrives at a customer’s home on a service call, they simply need to diagnose the problem or input the service that’s being requested to immediately know exactly how much to charge.
With flat rate pricing, there’s no need to estimate how many labor hours the job may take or to look up the cost of individual parts or components. This also means there’s no need to call the office or to get back to the customer with a price later on; technicians are able to provide customers with concrete quotes in real-time and get started on the job sooner.
With the speed and accuracy that come with flat rate pricing, your sales staff and technicians are armed with the accurate information and rapid responses that they need to close more sales and bring in more business.
Put Your Customers’ Minds at Ease
A reliable flat rate pricing book is built around data collected on how much time and effort goes into a job, whether it’s a repair or an installation. Some business owners hesitate to institute flat rate pricing because they feel that since their expert technicians typically finish a job more quickly they’re reaping an unfair benefit by charging for more labor than went into the job.
In reality, what customers want most of all is to know how much the job will cost up front. Even if the flat rate price is marginally higher—which it isn’t always—customers just want to know from the start how much a service will cost. In fact, 92% of homeowners prefer flat rate pricing over hourly pricing. Just about everything else that customers purchase, whether it’s goods or services, is assigned a consistent price, so it’s what homeowners are used to and they prefer it that way.
Putting your customer’s mind at ease that they won’t be charged more if a job takes a bit longer than expected helps to minimize customer complaints if unexpected issues do crop up. As a bonus, this also tends to reduce the time homeowners spend looking over a technician’s shoulder during a job—something your technicians are sure to appreciate.
Enhance Efficiency in the Field
When you base your billing around established flat rate pricing, it gives your technicians more incentive to carry out jobs as efficiently as possible. Rather than bringing in more money for your business by occupying more hours—a slippery slope that often leads to wasted time and customer complaints—technicians working for business using a flat rate pricing model prove their value and advance by completing jobs quickly, efficiently, and in a way that leaves customers happy.
Maximize Profits for Your Business
An added benefit of your technicians’ skill and experience is that they’re likely to complete most jobs significantly faster than the timeframe used when calculating flat rate prices. This is doubly true for the most common jobs your company encounters, like routine installations and equipment maintenance.
As a result, flat rate pricing allows experienced technicians to generate more profit for your company per job. While improving your bottom line is always good for your business, you’ll also enjoy the added bonus of improving customer satisfaction with faster job completion without feeling like you’re leaving money on the table.
Get Paid Sooner
Flat rate pricing enables your technicians and sales staff to provide customers with fast, reliable quotes to drastically shorten the sales process. In much the same way, giving customers a direct quote from the very beginning helps you to shorten the order-to-cash cycle.
When customers know how much a job will cost from the start, it’s much less likely that they’ll take issue with the price or try to negotiate with your technician when the final bill is presented. This means they’re more likely to have your payment ready to go when the time comes since there are no surprises.
Enabling your technicians to accept payment in the field speeds this process up even more, broadening the number of ways your customers can pay and making payment more convenient for them. By presenting customers with an accurate quote early on and expanding the ways in which they can pay, you’re once again improving customer satisfaction and helping your business to grow simultaneously.
To learn more about how easy implementing flat rate pricing can be and how the switch can help your business to be the best it can be, explore WorkWave ServMan and our integration with Profit Rhino’s flat rate pricing book today!