A Call Out Fee (sometimes called Attendance Fees) is a set amount of money paid by the customer for a qualified tradesperson to look at a prospecting job. A Call Out Fee generally includes a qualified tradesperson visiting a place to analyse the situation and develop a solution that resolves the customer's immediate problem. The solution is presented as a quotation that includes labour and supplies.
Call Out Fees have been common practice in the trade industry for many years and trade companies have specific approaches when it comes to inspecting a job for a quote.
- Some will charge nothing to offer a quote
- Some will waive the call out fee if you proceed with the quote
- Others will charge a varying fee based on location and specific days (weekends & public holidays)
Generally, call out fees are based on 60-80% of a tradies time and are often only charged for the initial consultation, not for any follow-ups. If a job is agreed to buy a customer, Call Out Fees are often waived as part of the deal, offering an additional incentive to take up a job.
Why Charge a Call Out Fee?
Adopting Call Out Fees has a range of benefits.
You’re getting something for you or your employees' time: Even if a customer doesn't proceed with a job, you’re not losing what you would financially if you didn’t charge one. Think of a Call Out Fee as a form of insurance for your finances and time!
You will phase out low percentage job opportunities: The reality is, customers who are serious about following through with a job most likely will be willing to pay for a Call Out Fee than those that aren't. Call Out Fees can almost act as a ‘filter’ to ensure the jobs you’re quoting are worth your time and are likely to be won.
We touch on this more in the video below:
Implementing a Call Out Fee
We understand how it can be difficult to begin charging Call Out Fees out of nowhere. It’s important that the customer understands what they are getting out of the fee and that you are being transparent about the fee. Don’t show up to a quote without telling the customer about the call out fee and then charge!
Ultimately, the best way to do this is to give the customer a clear and direct response as to what they will receive as part of the call out.
This can include:
- Outlining a clear description as to what the customer will receive within the call out - ensure it’s more than a few points!
- Explain that you use industry-based software (FlatRateNOW) to determine the quote and you can provide different options using the Scratchpad.
- Where possible, be clear about how long the tradesperson will be there.
We elaborate on this further in the video below: