You run a small but growing business that sends people out into the field—plumbers, electricians, HVAC technicians, taxi drivers, you name it.
Your business has grown to the point where you are overwhelmed and disorganized. Everything is done manually and on paper, and you know that you need software to help you out—but software is expensive!
Or so you think.
Does free exist when it comes to field service management software? It does!
There are free systems and tools out there to cover your basic needs without hurting your wallet.
Below is a list of free, freemium (free, but with limited features), and open source field service management and taxi software programs. It can be difficult to shortlist free and open source software, so I’ve done the research and created a comprehensive list of only those that offer a free or open source version. I also referred to Software Advice’s FrontRunners as a guide to ensure I didn’t leave out any tools that belong on this list.
Software is listed alphabetically.
Free/freemium field service management software
Type of software: Free for one user, indefinitely
Features: Fergus offers all the basic features of a field service management program, including invoicing, scheduling, work order history, and a mobile app.
Pros/cons: The biggest con? Fergus is free for only one user. If you’re a one-man operation, however, that’s not bad. So long as there’s only one active user, you won’t pay.
This offers you the control and organization typically available only to a larger company that can afford to purchase software. Better yet, the free plan gives you access to all the features of the full version.
Type of software: Free; good for an unlimited number of users, though with limited features
Features: Loc8 offers job management, quoting and invoicing, calendar and mapping, pre-built reports, knowledge base, and live chat.
Pros/cons: The free version is restricted to five features, but those five features are a decent basic package: jobs, quoting/invoicing, calendar and mapping, pre-built reports, and live chat with Loc8 in case you need help. The upside is that the free version has unlimited users. If you’re a service company with, say, some 15 techs, Loc8 could be a great way to organize your business for free.
Type of software: Free for up to three users
Features: ReachOut offers basic field service management functions such as invoicing and estimates, dispatching, drag-and-drop scheduling, work order management, and location tracking.
Pros/cons: The big con? If you have more than three people, you’ll have to invest in the paid version. However, since ReachOut’s free version offers all the features of the paid version, this is a great option for small businesses or a bigger company looking to test out a software option before they invest.
Type of software: Free for one user
Features: ServiceTrade offers quoting, dispatching, scheduling and other common field service management software features. If you’ve got a WordPress website, ServiceTrade offers a plugin, called Service Portal, where customers (and you) can make appointments, check on the status of upcoming appointments, and review past service.
Pros/cons: You’re restricted to a single user and 20 jobs with ServiceTrade. Another con? There’s no payment portal, so your customers won’t be able to pay you through the app. That said, ServiceTrade does integrate with QuickBooks, and you can send unlimited quotes. You won’t get human support, but there’s support documentation you can check if you get confused.
Open source field service management software
5. Hydra OMS
Type of software: Open source
Features: Hydra Order Management System offers job management and a “process wizard” that makes it easy for employees to place their jobs in the larger business process.
Pros/cons: Like most open source software, Hydra is free to download off Github. If you aren’t familiar with how to use open source software or you have staff members that are only sort-of-good at coding, Hydra also offers customer support for a fee.
Hydra is best suited for facilities management, plant maintenance, or other single-location field service jobs. It isn’t designed as a field service management software program, but it does handle work orders, as this surprisingly easy demo shows (click “support request” to begin).
Type of software: Open source job management software that helps you organize work orders
Features: OTRS Community Edition offers scheduling and a calendar, ticket management (with prioritization and follow-up features), and automatic notifications.
Pros/cons: Though many OTRS customers are help desk and IT professionals, the software has also been used by facility management, manufacturing, and transport and logistics companies. Any company managing people and vehicles that are working at different locations should benefit from OTRS.
The OTRS community of open source users is also active— for instance, it recently linked to a third-party API that helps you determine the gender of a customer, even if they haven’t entered that information. If you have customers who speak multiple languages, the OTRS community blog also recently posted about how to build a program that automatically determines the language of an email.
Limo and taxi software
Type of software: Free fleet management software
Features: TaxiTapp offers free software that works similarly to Uber, only TaxiTapp is designed to counter ridesharing. TaxiTapp also offers fleet management and real-time tracking, auto and manual dispatch, and payment processing.
Pros/cons: The software is free for taxi cab companies and drivers, but there is a small fee per transaction. Currently, if you pay by mobile, it’s a 2.9% added fee.
TaxiTapp also work with the PayPal Here credit card reader if you’d rather go that route. The rate for that is 2.75% per trip.
Still looking for free field service management software?
If these free and open source field service management software options don’t fit your needs, find software that does using Capterra’s FSM software directory. You can search for software by function, rating, and number of users.
And if you’re specifically in the taxi business, be sure to check out Capterra’s list of the top transportation dispatch software products.
If you use one I didn’t mention, or you make one I didn’t mention, please let me know in the comments below!
Looking for Field Service Management software? Check out Capterra's list of the best Field Service Management software solutions.