Before the introduction of ServiceM8 Network, many businesses set up contractors as Staff within their own ServiceM8 account and used security roles to restrict their access. ServiceM8 Network allows you to take a different approach: instead of having your contractors log into your own ServiceM8 account, you can now have them set up their own ServiceM8 accounts and send jobs to them using ServiceM8 Network.
Using ServiceM8 Network, you can maintain more separation between your business and your contractors' businesses. Because it's a separate ServiceM8 account, there's no risk that a misconfigured security role could give them more access to your data than you intended. If your contractors receive work from multiple different businesses which use ServiceM8, it's quite awkward for them to log in and out of different ServiceM8 accounts; using ServiceM8 Network removes this problem and makes it much easier for your contractors to manage their work.
There are two main limitations of using ServiceM8 Network compared to setting up your contractors as staff. The first is that you can't set up scheduled bookings for Network Requests -- you send a Network Request to your contractor and they convert it to a job, but it's up to the contractor to create the scheduled booking for that job. The second is that the Client for the job created in your contractor's account will be your business, i.e. the contractor bills you, not your client. If your contractors deal directly with your client for invoicing and payment, then you should set up your contractors as staff in your own ServiceM8 account.
Use ServiceM8 Network if...
- Your contractors receive work from multiple different businesses
- Your contractors shouldn't see any billing or pricing information
- You don't need tight control over scheduling jobs for a specific date & time
- Your contractors send you an invoice for the work they do, and you bill the customer separately
Set up your contractors as Staff if...
- You need to be able to control the date & time at which appointments are scheduled (and be able to reschedule them at short notice)
- Your contractors invoice the client while they are on site
- Your contractors do most of their work only for your business