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Check out the Glympse blog for insights into how customers use the Glympse platform and products, helpful FAQs, and how to get the most out of geo-location technology and apps.

Visibility VS Tracking: Why Visibility Into Employees’ Location is a Win for all

Visibility vs Tracking Feature Image

Big brother. The eye in the sky. Snitch. Location tracking has a bad reputation, and no one wants to be tracked every second of the day. Yet that’s the fear of some service professionals when they hear an employer is implementing geo-location technology.

What are the fears of knowing an employee’s location?

There is legitimate and understandable hesitation around location visibility because of the fear of “track and trace”. That someone at company headquarters is watching the field team move around on a screen, waiting to catch the first person who stops for coffee between service calls. 

According to the 2023 Voice of the Field Service Engineer survey, “being tracked and traced by GPS or other means,” is now the second least favorite part of a field service engineer’s job! (moving up 5 spots from last year’s 7th place ranking.) But location tracking is an inevitable reality that plays a key role in the customer experience. So how do service leaders find a balance?

3 Major Ways Location Visibility is Different than Tracking

Fortunately, watching an employee move around on a map is not what happens when automated, intuitive geo-location technology is implemented. “Location visibility” is not track and trace, and that’s a good thing!

Location visibility has been used in many industries for years. You can see when your pizza is on the way. When your ride is about to pick you up. Where the delivery truck is with your package. 

In fact, most companies we talk with use telematics in their vehicles and have employees who carry mobile phones. Both are forms of location visibility, yet they don’t carry the same misconceptions of “tracking”. Instead, telematics and phones – like the geo-location visibility technology we’re talking about in this article – are all about using automation to make work more efficient, and transparency to improve customer service.

  1. Location visibility fixes problems with automation, not humans: No need to text a message like “running late,” “stuck in traffic,” or “on my way.” A geo-location app automatically detects a slow-down and sends an update to the customer. The technician avoids distracted driving and can keep their mind and their eyes on the road.
  1. Companies gain greater transparency into service calls times and customer ratings. Leaders can plan more efficient routes, recognize top performers, and address negative trends before they become larger problems.
  1. Automation and transparency give customers superior service and peace of mind: They know exactly when the technician will arrive, are notified if that time changes, and can see the person’s name and/or photo for added security. If a customer calls in with a question about arrival time, an office employee can simply get a glimpse into the employee’s location and inform the customer.

The Benefits of Employee Location Visibility

With a focus on automation and transparency, location visibility technology breaks open a host of benefits for customers, employees, and employers.

For customers, location visibility is a critical and increasingly expected service component. It gives customers accurate information and confidence in your arrival time – and sets your service miles apart from your competitors (this Forbes article notes that 61% of consumers say they’ll pay “at least” 5% more if they know they’ll get a good customer experience).

  • Customers know exactly when to expect the technician so they can be sure to be home. No more vague time slots and missed appointments. 
  • With a live ETA, customers see automatically adjusted arrival times based on traffic delays, detours, or anything else. This reduces their worry and assures them the technician is on the way. 
  • Customers don’t feel like their time is wasted waiting for someone to arrive. Location visibility is tangible proof that you respect their time.

For technicians and service professionals, location visibility drives more efficiency and productivity, ensuring they aren’t frustrated with not-at-home customers or unavoidable delays. 

  • Based on geo-fencing and live ETA, a robust geo-location app sends automated messages to tell the customer “I’m on my way,” “I’m here,” and even remind the customer to be at home. Fewer missed appointments, less wasted time. 
  • No need for the employee to worry about sending the customer a message or updating them on delays. Hands-free automation takes care of it all!

For your company, location visibility saves an enormous amount of cost and time. 

  • Fewer expensive truck rolls.
  • Fewer customer calls asking, “When are they getting here?”
  • A white-glove customer service experience that few others can match.
  • Easily aggregate and analyze data on arrival times, customer ratings, and more; use it to plan more efficient routes, recognize top performers, and address negative trends before they become larger problems.

Glympse Geo-location Technology Prioritizes Privacy and Visibility

With a foundation of +15 years’ experience in geo-location technology, we design innovations so that all stakeholders have privacy, transparency, and control.

You control how and when a technician’s location is shared. Geofencing, for example, can be configured to turn off after the technician’s last appointment of the day, or turn on after the truck is a certain distance from the office. Privacy settings ensure the customer doesn’t see the technician’s location once the appointment is completed. 

A picture of Glympse CEO and President, Chris Ruff

“Brand leaders are thinking obsessively about service. In a world where customers can change their loyalty on a dime, the most successful organizations are seeking new ways to make their customer engagements frictionless. Location visibility, balanced with privacy and control, helps them reach a new level of convenience, efficiency and delight.”

– Chris Ruff, CEO, Glympse

Glympse geo-location technology integrates neatly into your existing tech stack and is IVR compatible. With real-time location visibility, our clients have seen…

  • Up to a 35% reduction in customer service calls 
  • 40% drop in customers not at home when the technician arrives
  • Double-digit increases in customer service ratings

“We wanted an experience for our customers that was like Uber. I care about the CX. And for security reasons, [we wanted] the tech photo. We have the same look and feel in every country…Glympse has been a very seamless interface and experience. I have taken tens of thousands of calls out of the call center.”

– Senior vice president of global deployment and field services, Fortune 100 company

Tips for Talking with Employees about Location Visibility

If you’re concerned about employee buy-in, check out the inService™ podcast by the Service Council. Glympse CEO and president Chris Ruff discusses the approaches and communications companies are using to get employees successfully on board with location visibility.

  • Bring them into the conversation early and stress the benefits of making their job easier and more efficient. 
  • Listen to their concerns and use that information to set up location visibility rules and parameters accordingly. 
  • Incentivize positive behaviors. Recognize and reward top performers.