If you look closely at how the rental companies’ modes of operation have changed in the recent times, you will likely notice a considerable shift in paradigm, especially in how they have started to look at rental as a flexible offering. In particular, the transformation that stands out is about how the traditional equipment rental services are gradually moving to online services, as offerings through various channels, for both retail and commercial customers. Another critical aspect, which is also palpable, is the ever-increasing need for round-the-clock collaborations with various third-party entities.
Challenges, opportunities, and factors leading to this shift in paradigm
The ever-evolving customers’ expectations
As with many other sectors, the noticeable changes are considerably related to how the customers’ expectations with services have been evolving, especially in the recent times. In addition to requiring more renting options, the customers who are now seeking new equipment and objects to rent, are increasing in numbers as well.
Emphasis on state-of-the-art technology and innovation
There is an increasing emphasis on mobility, not just about the service, but also about the way the Internet of Things (IoT) can be leveraged to provide better support and service. Also, the one common thread running through all these changes is the underlying dependence on technology and the need for innovative thinking.
Constant demand for reliability, adaptability, and effective integration
In addition to being robust, the software solution needs to be adaptable enough to address the customers’ ever-changing requirements. There is also a constant need for reliable solutions that can be programmed to handle the specific demands of the business, which include commercial and operational factors. Needless to add, it has become increasingly vital for rental companies to have the right Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) solution in place. This helps the rental outfits to access Independent Software Vendor (ISV) solutions, which in turn aids the companies to address the challenges that they face. However, this also means that the vendors should now work on creating tailored solutions that have both innovative and traditional elements in them.
3 features that your equipment rental software solution should ideally have
While many other rental market trends could also be apparent from a quick glance, a more in-depth deep dive would likely reveal many new demands and areas of improvement. Fortunately, besides addressing the latent challenges and opportunities effectively, the right equipment rental software solution can also help you leverage various benefits to stay ahead of your competitors. However, here are the key essential features that you should consider, when looking for the solution that is ideal for your company:
Preset software bundles specifically for rental services
Considering the complexities of the rental industry, it may just not be possible to implement an off-the-shelf rental solution, and get on with it. However, as a first step, it would be good to have industry-specific templates. This way, you will have the means to trace the functionalities related to your needs, and thereby increase efficiency, wherever possible. For instance, some solutions focus primarily on the management of lifecycle services; however, you can go a step further and standardize the training processes, which could help contribute to the efficiency factor. Accordingly, the rental companies should ideally pick those software solutions that provide them with advanced technology coupled with the pre-configured packages — invariably leading to quicker deployment.
Solutions that offer high adaptability
Despite being a niche industry, the rental services has been constantly evolving over the years. Consequently, while the robust solutions are in demand, the ones that provide optimal flexibility are highly desirable as well. Along with quote-to-invoice or asset management, the options to add mobility and the ability to move to different online channels, whenever required, could also be instrumental to success. Sometimes, it could even be about the collaboration with third parties, expansion of offerings, increase in locations, and so on. Indeed, it can be quite challenging to foresee what the new future demands could be, and exactly how the software solutions can address or mitigate them. However, an open platform, with a modular offering, can not only ensure that the foundation is stable, but it also offers feasible options to address key changes — and all this, sans the significant or undesired disruption.
Focus on innovation without compromising security
If you are from the rental sector, you will likely be aware of the volume of sensitive information that is part of this industry. Accordingly, there is a constant need to assure your customers that their data is secure — round the clock. Moreover, while ensuring the security aspect, the ease of information sharing (which is role-relevant) too cannot be compromised with. Accordingly, the integration aspect must be another key consideration.
Handy tips and key questions that you should ask
Evidently, a vendor who rates high on various critical factors, such as flexibility, structured access, security, and well-designed templates that are industry-relevant, will likely be the one that can address your requirements effectively.
However, when evaluating various equipment rental software solutions that are on your table, we believe that a tip sheet can help you make the right choice, by providing you with the below information:
- Handy tips that can help you with leading insights and ideas
- What are the critical questions you should seek answers for?
- What are the various attributes that you should ideally look for?