Not too long ago, the plumbing industry relied strictly on analog processes. Every job was manual, from installation and repair to dispatch, invoicing and accounting. In 2022, the plumbing profession now runs on advanced technologies that range from thermal-imaging leak detection to smart water heaters and trenchless pipe repair.

Today, perhaps the most essential technology that is now transforming the industry is a wave of powerful software solutions driven by artificial intelligence, data science and virtual reality. Intuitive technician-enablement platforms equip plumbing contractors and their teams with innovative platforms that deliver deep, actionable insights to streamline operational efficiency, protect existing revenue and identify untapped revenue opportunities.

Driven by a competitive marketplace, ongoing labor shortages and evolving expectations among consumers, innovation from field service solution providers will continue to accelerate in the coming years. Here are some developments expected to emerge or continue in 2022:

  • Deep data: Demand for increasingly granular and detailed data points — and the insights generated by powerful analytics — is propelling software providers to enhance the collection and indexing of information. The leading service platforms leverage current and historical job data, customer and technician information, financials, equipment and manufacturer details and a wide range of other key data points in order to maximize efficiency and accuracy.
  • Institutional knowledge bases: With granular detailed field data collection, top platforms offer the ability to build deep institutional knowledge bases to support real-time decision-making and data-based continuity.
  • Customer convenience: Both residential and commercial customers value the convenience and accessibility of online scheduling, payments, alerts and reminders. In addition to streamlining your operations, modern technology solutions can help elevate the level of service and information you’re able to provide your customers, ensuring a quality and optimal customer experience on every job.
  • Service agreements: Maintenance contract agreements are key to stability and growth in the plumbing industry, but they have traditionally required significant time and energy to manage. The most powerful software platforms now feature long-term service contract functionality that can drive serious business growth.
  • Virtual mentoring: Designed to help alleviate the pressure of the ongoing labor shortages in the trades, virtual mentorship helps contractors and field service teams enhance customer experience and protect revenue by avoiding second truck rolls or incomplete service. In-house live virtual support and training calls empower technicians by offering on-the-job troubleshooting and efficient and repeatable processes that build skills and expertise, rather than simply addressing the task at hand.

“The industry’s leading innovators have developed technology solutions that empower contractors and their teams to utilize, aggregate and analyze critical job data.”

A number of technology solutions claim to provide AI- and deep data-driven functions designed specifically for field technicians. The reality is that only a few elite software providers truly deliver technician-first technology that is backed by deep data and tens of thousands of hours of development in partnership with techs in the field.

The industry’s leading innovators have developed technology solutions that empower contractors and their teams to utilize, aggregate and analyze critical job data and deliver premier value through unsurpassed efficiency, accuracy and accountability. In addition, standardized workflows, job documentation capabilities and technician training and enablement solutions support data-based business intelligence and real-time decision-making.

Throughout 2022, field service management software for plumbing contractors will continue to advance, leveraging complex data to help service providers solve the industry’s most common pain points, elevate productivity and deliver extraordinary service to their customers.