Alchemist Pool Service Relies on LiveViewGPS to Keep its Customers Satisfied


The problem

It’s a problem many owners of mobile fleets face: a client complains a service rep never showed up. Or only stayed a short time and didn’t do the job right.

This was a potential problem for Alchemist Pool Service, a family-owned business that services pools in Las Vegas, North Las Vegas and Henderson, Nevada. In addition to routine maintenance, the company also offers comprehensive services such as pool repairs, tile cleaning and technicians certified by the Clark County Health Department for maintaining commercial pools.

“Our pool maintenance technicians are good,” says Rick Kennedy, president of Alchemist Pool Service, “They’re fast and they’re thorough, skimming leaves, emptying the skimmer and pump baskets, analyzing the water for proper chemistry, and adding chemicals when necessary to sanitize the pool—whatever’s required.

“Sometimes they’re so efficient they’re in and out before the customer knows it, and we get a phone call asking why the pool guy never showed. We assure them he did.”

In the past Kennedy used a walkie-talkie phone system to monitor his mobile workers and keep up with that they were doing. It was the only system the company could afford at the time.

Alchemist Pool Service used the system for years and became increasingly frustrated. The company encountered a series of problems, such as having the phones continuously drop the location function. Plus they had to manually load software to get the phone to function, and updates were few and far between.

It was time for a change.

The LiveViewGPS solution

“We needed a more reliable system,” Kennedy states. “We knew there were other systems out there and we made a number of inquiries. We looked at half a dozen vendors and called several to get a feeling for their service. To be honest, most of them were selling similar equipment and products.

“When our phone contract expired I decided to go with LiveViewGPS because I had a good feeling about them. The combination of cost per unit and the monthly service fee was most reasonable.”

Next-generation Live Trac G-5 vehicle tracking units feature 10-second vehicle tracking along with a highly sensitive GPS receiver that works where other GPS trackers fail.

The vehicle trackers operate on LiveViewGPS’s exclusive Live Trac Platform, a state-of-the-art web-based system that’s integrated with Microsoft’s Virtual Earth Mapping system, permitting users to locate all vehicles 24/7 via a browser or web-enabled mobile device. The Live Trac System lets users:

  • Watch vehicles turn-by-turn live, including current speed, direction and location
  • Receive speed and boundary alerts, which are automatically text messaged to any e-mail address or cell phone
  • Obtain over a dozen reports such as start/stop reports, vapor trail reports, route alerts, ignition alert, aggressive driving, excessive idling and more.

The Live Trac GPS Platform, with reliable 99.9 percent server uptime, requires no software to install. System updates are free, and live support is built into the platform. Moreover, there are no monthly contracts.

The benefits

“We ordered Live Trac G-5 vehicle trackers for our eight pickup trucks,” Kennedy remarks. “It was pretty simple: install the units, send the login information and boom! There it was. No problems at all.

“We’re different from a lot of companies with mobile fleets because ours operates within a small geographic area. It usually takes only 10 or 15 minutes to go from job to job, so we don’t have problems with long idling times or traffic congestion that can drive up fuel costs.

“What we do have, however, is a seasonal operation. There’s not a lot of need for pool cleaning in the winter, and our workload drops considerably. A major consideration in selecting LiveViewGPS was they were the only company that didn’t make us sign long-term contracts. They’re month to month, which is really a money saver for us because we can suspend service during the winter and restart in the spring.”

Live Trac reports -- like stops/starts and ignition on/off -- allow Kennedy to monitor his mobile field crew, which was what he wanted. He knows exactly when each crew member arrived at a house, how long he stayed and when he left.

“The reports I use show me the history of when one of our service people arrives and when they leave. That’s all important to me.

“To be honest I hardly ever check on our guys because I know they’re professionals—they do what they’re supposed to, “Kennedy admits. “All I want is for them to give our customers what they pay for; that’s what’s important.”

The Live Trac System is a double-edged sword for Alchemist Pool Service’s workforce.

On the one hand, if Kennedy starts worrying about one of his people, or if he gets complaints, he can monitor the person to observe whether he’s developed a pattern of going off-route, or leaving a job site early or moonlighting.

On the other hand, the system backs up company employees when required. If a customer complains a pool tech didn’t stop by or only stayed a few minutes, Kennedy can show him the vapor trail report that documents when the worker arrived, how late he stayed and when he left. GPS doesn’t lie Kennedy tells them.

“LiveViewGPS is real easy to work with,” Kennedy says. “Whenever we’ve asked for anything over the past three years they deliver. Their motto seems to be whatever you want, you can have. I like that attitude.

“With LiveViewGPS I don’t wonder and I don’t worry. They’ve certainly met all my expectations. And they help keep me sharper than my competition.

“Would I recommend them? Absolutely!”