(As published in ACHR News on September 29, 2021)
The ridesharing company Uber began in 2009 and hit a $50 billion valuation in five years (almost two years less than Facebook), disrupting the transportation market, especially taxi business in urban areas. The pandemic has cut into the company, but it remains as an example of how quickly a market can change when software is involved.
Will the “Uberization” of HVAC — allowing technicians to be called directly off an app — become the next disruptive trend?
Could homeowners request a technician via a simple mobile phone app? Darren Dixon, president of fyxify, believes so. With fyxify, instead of calling several local contractors and choosing one, a homeowner finds a technician by pulling up an app that displays them. Then, the homeowner books one and the technician heads their way at the earliest convenience. Dixon explained that if a contractor has already serviced a customer, they are paired with any future needs that customer has, protecting that relationship. The app also displays customer service ratings for each technician.
“It drastically reduces the amount of time it takes to get service,” said Dixon. “We have multiple examples of customers commenting that within five minutes, they had a qualified technician on the way to the house.”
For the contractor, apps like fyxify take the place of existing operating software that works to streamline management and keep the user interface intuitive. The software also walks technicians through a checklist to make sure a standardized inspection is done.
Fyxify also takes a large burden off the technician to act like a sales person, according to Dixon. The app allows homeowners to see every option for their repair and offers advice through AI on what the lowest cost of operation going forward is. Technicians then go in and perform the inspection and show the customer the recommended options, but they aren’t required to act like salespeople, since the app shows all of the potential solutions and their costs. For those who are interested, contractors can fill out a form on the fyxify site and then go through the onboarding process.
“This is going to give consumers, faster, more reliable service,” said Dixon. “It’s going to take a qualified contractor who is smaller and has availability and promote that technician as an immediate solution for that consumer. Progressive contractors are going to have the opportunity to give flexibility and improvements to the work/life balance of technicians.”