As a service provider, your clients are constantly looking to you to manage installs, service or repairs of systems and equipment. Streamlining your field service management opens up new doors to service and customer satisfaction. You should always be seeking opportunities to improve your business from overhauling processes to better managing your employees in the field. So how do you do that?
You probably already have a system in place for keeping your information organized, but without some kind of organization system, you hard work may not be paying off as much as you’d like it to. As your customer database continues to grow, so does the amount of information you need to keep track of from customer contact information and service history. This can be a nightmare if your customers’ information is scattered across multiple databases or scrap pieces of paper on your desk. It’s not quite as daunting to get a hold of that information if you’re in the office. But what about your employees in the field? If all customer information is stored in one location and you’re able to access the information from anywhere at any time, you’re well on your way to streamlining your business.
Time management and anticipating how to make the most of your time while increasing productivity has much to do with the success of a business. However, with interruptions and unscheduled jobs, even the most carefully planned schedule can fall apart. Tools such as mapping software enable you to plan daily schedules and add jobs based on the location of your employees in the field. Your employees will have access to the most direct route to a job saving both time and money and increasing customer satisfaction. You can also create a task list and schedule workers to make occasional stops or pick up products from a supplier between jobs.
Service Management Software
Now is the time to consider how field service management (FSM) software can transform your business into an efficient, well-oiled machine. If you’ve considered this solution, then chances are your business is ready for this software. This software allows you to get a better handle on your business, increase overall productivity and keep your organization running smoothly. Gartner, a technology research company, estimates that market penetration for field service applications has reached 25% of the addressable market. Software sales can only be approximated because privately held vendors and some ERP vendors like Infor, IBM, Oracle and SAP do not disclose software sales in the area of FSM. Gartner puts the revenue for packaged field service dispatch and workforce management software applications, not including service revenue, at approximately $308 million in 2011 and is expected to rise to $329 million by the end of 2013.
Prepare Technicians for New Technology
One of the most significant challenges in preparing your labor force for changes in processes and technology is balancing varying employee aptitudes. Ensuring that those who may need to gain additional familiarity get what they need is essential to successfully automating your workforce. Sometimes this involves pairing early adopters with those who are more reluctant to balance each individual’s strengths. Flexibilities in technology are also important to helping employees overcome the changes they might be experiencing. Wizards, automated workflow, tutorials and other guides make processes more efficient and improve use adoption. Applications can be tailored to a specific type of service work and to a specific technician will improve the ease of use.
For improved field technician productivity, operating expenses, customer satisfaction and revenue, streamlining your business is essential. In order to do so, you need to organize, plan ahead, possibly choose a service management software that fits your business needs and make sure your employees are trained on any new technologies you implement.
Robert Stanley is a content producer at ClickSoftware a capacity planning company which also offers a variety of resources on mobile business apps. ClickSoftware Soluções para gestão de serviços em campo es una gran opción para las empresas bilingüe.