A feature of iOS 12 is Siri Shortcuts: the ability to use Siri with third-party apps, like ServiceM8. Siri Shortcuts opens up whole new possibilities to access information, communicate, and complete tasks with ServiceM8 and other apps, using only your voice. Once set up, you'll be able to ask Siri things like:
- “When is my next job?”
- “What’s the client’s name?” or
- “What’s left to do on this job?”
And, Siri can now even do things for you like:
- Start the next job
- Call the customer
- Message the next booking's job contact, to tell them you’re running late
Or even email the invoice to the customer for you
Siri Shortcuts can be triggered with custom voice commands, through your iPhone or iPad, and even via Apple CarKit, Apple Watch, and Apple Earpods.
This means when you’re on the road, or your hands are full, you’ll be able to ask Siri for ServiceM8-related information, perform specific tasks in ServiceM8, or open ServiceM8 directly to a specific view. Shortcuts like:
- Clock on
- Clock off
- Start lunch break
- Check in & navigate to your next job
- Provide a summary of your next job
- Open the ServiceM8 camera to take a photo for your current job
- Send a specific email template to the job contact
- Ask the client’s name
- Call the current job's contact
- Send a text message to the job contact
- Ask what’s left to do on your current job
- Ask what time your next scheduled booking is
- Call the job contact for your next booking
- Send a text message to your next booking's job contact
- Open the Check Out wizard to complete the current job
NOTE: use of ServiceM8 with Siri Shortcuts requires you to assign your own custom verbal commands to these specific ServiceM8 actions (i.e. it does not start working automatically — you must map your voice commands to actions). Read on to find out how.
Some examples of how you can use ServiceM8 with Siri Shortcuts:
"Hey Siri, Start Next Job"
Siri automatically checks you into the next job in your schedule, notifies the client that you're on the way via text, then opens Apple Maps:
"Hey Siri, Job Summary"
Siri will read out:
- The job description
- Checklist items
- Badges on the job
- Notes stored in the Client Diary
- Whether anyone else has worked on this job yet
- Whether you've done work for this client before
This is such a powerful feature because it makes each drive to the next job usable time. It's also great for highlighting job details like badges and client notes that you may forget to check when you arrive on site.
"Hey Siri, Client Name"
Siri will read out and display the client's name:
"Hey Siri, Checklist"
Siri will read out and display the checklist items not yet marked as completed on the job:
"Hey Siri, Next Booking Time"
Siri will read out and display the next job's booking time in your schedule:
"Hey Siri, Next Job Running Late"
Siri can prepare to send a text message to the client for your next scheduled booking, based on a template of your choice (e.g. a standard Technician Delayed SMS template). Siri will prepare the text for sending, and ask you to verbally confirm:
"Hey Siri, Job Complete"
Siri will open the current job, straight to the first step of the Check Out wizard:
Getting Started with ServiceM8 Siri Shortcuts
To get started with ServiceM8 shortcuts and assign your own custom voice phrases to activate them, go to Settings > Siri & Search > All Shortcuts > then scroll down or search for ServiceM8:
Keep in mind that some of the above examples will not be suggested as available ServiceM8 shortcuts if you have not actually performed that specific task in ServiceM8 since updating your device to iOS 12.
For example, if you'd like to use the shortcut to open the ServiceM8 camera for the current job to take a photo, but the 'Take Job Photo' shortcut isn't being suggested in your Siri settings, open ServiceM8 and perform that specific action (i.e. tap the camera icon in a job card and take a photo), and the correlating shortcut should soon appear in your Siri settings.
Also note that not all possible actions or items of information in ServiceM8 are available to use with Siri Shortcuts.
Other Ways to use Shortcuts
Siri Shortcuts goes deeper than requesting single items of information, or execution of single tasks. If you download the ‘Shortcuts’ app from the App Store, you’ll be able to create shortcuts with multiple steps, even linking actions in different apps together into a single workflow.
So, if you want to really automate the start of your workday, you could setup a ‘Start Day’ workflow, that:
- Clocks you on
- Starts your first job
- Notifies the client you’re on the way
- And then reads out a job summary
- Before switching to Apple music to play music.
So, take the time to set up some basic ServiceM8 shortcuts you can activate with your own custom voice commands. From there, have a think about some of the most common, time-consuming, or distracting ways you interact with your device throughout each and every day, and consider how you could save time and automate these tasks with Siri Shortcuts.