Field service organizations undergoing digital transformation realize the importance, ubiquity, and high expectations of mobile technology for customers, field technicians, and the organization. The growing need and increasing use of mobile field service apps with mobile form capabilities can improve workflow, data collection, customer interactions, accuracy, and revenue.
In this post, we’ll examine the top reasons why field service organizations should adopt field service mobile form technology, cover the challenges faced, and explore business case benefits.
What are field service mobile forms?
Before examining the benefits of field service mobile forms software, it’s important to clearly define what it is. Field service mobile forms are a critical feature of field service management software that is specifically designed for field technicians using mobile devices.
Field service mobile forms can be used to track their work, collect data on appointments, record or initiate work orders, customer interactions, and much more.
Depending on the software deployed, the field service mobile forms may include capabilities such as dispatching, photos & sketches, offline mode (to fill out forms without Internet connectivity), automation of sending forms, and document scanning.
Top challenges resolved by field service mobile forms
Field service organizations that don’t embrace field service mobile forms face several obstacles. Let’s dive into a few of the top challenges that field service mobile forms can resolve.
- Paper-based processes – Field service technicians have to deal with the volume and velocity of managing all the different printed papers. In this traditional paper-based approach, there are often multiple versions of PDFs and it becomes a challenge to make sure that the correct ones are printed, filled, scanned, or filed accurately.
- An increasing amount of data collection – Data is integral to field service organizations, and the traditional paper-based or manual approach to collecting data is not made for today’s needs. Furthermore, data collection needs to be fast, accurate, and easy.
- Time, efficiency, and accuracy – Filling out, managing, and sharing the form the traditional (paper-based, manual) way is time-consuming, labor-intensive, and error-prone. Field technicians are extremely busy and adding this task is not an efficient use of their time; in doing so, this may negatively impact workflow, customer retention, and revenue.
These are just a few challenges of the traditional paper and manual-based approach to field tech forms. There are field service organizations that will attempt to use various software solutions to create their own field service mobile forms, but these solutions were not specifically designed for the needs of field service techs. Other field service organizations try to build a software solution from the ground up but this is often a laborious and expensive effort where the end product lacks features and is quite often not actually adopted.
Top benefits of field service mobile forms
Here are the top benefits of deploying field service mobile forms.
- Mobile agility – As the name describes, field service mobile forms are built for today’s mobile-ready field technicians. The ubiquity of mobile devices – from smartphones, tablets, and laptops – can augment efficiency and agility while in the field.
- Improved workflow – Field teams who use field service mobile forms are empowered to complete work quickly and obviates the need of printing paper forms, filling them out, scanning, and entering the data.
- Adoption – Field service mobile forms are designed specifically for field techs and are typically created with intuitive workflows, which may include easy-to-use drag-and-drop apps. Field service organizations looking to digitally transform their business require technology that is powerful but also easy to deploy and adopt.
- Increase customer feedback – As mentioned, customers today have high expectations of the service and technology they interact with. Field service mobile forms with online surveys and feedback functionalities can help customers feel empowered to share their opinions. Meanwhile, field service organizations can analyze these important customer insights to improve service, customer retention, and ultimately revenue.
- Track with analytics – Field service mobile forms, depending on the software deployed, will help field service organizations track field performance and make data-driven decisions. Analytics can help provide analysis and insights into field productivity, quality, and compliance.
- Higher control and visibility – Field service mobile forms and field service management software can provide businesses with higher levels of visibility and control; this is an important benefit when working with a blended workforce.
5 Considerations for evaluating field service mobile form software
While the case for deploying field service mobile forms is strong, not all software solutions are created equal. It’s important for field service organizations to take some time to evaluate the various marketing providers. Here are the top 5 considerations for evaluating field service mobile form software.
1. Specifically designed for field service organizations – Select a software solution that was designed for the field service industry and be hesitant about vendors that do not have the experience and expertise of working with field service organizations. Some vendors will slightly modify form input and purport that it’s for field service use. Avoid those solutions and partner with a provider who built the field service mobile form software specifically to meet the needs and challenges of your field service technicians.
2. Data collection capabilities – Field technicians need to rely on accurate, real-time data to complete jobs and maintain accuracy. Data collection needs to be easy for the field tech and data should be easily accessible to other stakeholders within a field service organization.
3. Adaptive mobile forms – Consider software that dynamically changes based on user inputs to help improve tasks such as diagnosis analysis, workflow, etc.
4. Easy deployment, intuitive interface – Look for field service mobile forms software that is easy to deploy and integrate with existing systems. You also want to consider solutions that feature intuitive interfaces so field tech will require less training to be up and running. If the user interface is too complex, odds are it will not be readily adopted and therefore, it’ll be a potential waste of investment.
5. Part of an integrated solution — Field service mobile forms should have the option of being part of an integrated field service management solution. When the software is part of a holistic, unified, and integrated solution, you can tap into other features and functionality. For example, sending forms and data easily between different components of the whole software solution.
Getting started with field service mobile forms
Digitally transforming your field service organization, especially while working with a blended workforce, doesn’t have to be so challenging and complex. When you partner with a field service management software solution like ServicePower, you are teaming up with a technology partner who has the experience and expertise of working with businesses like yours while tapping into all the benefits of innovative field service mobile forms software.
ServicePower empowers technicians with real-time access to the tools, processes, and information they need to complete their service jobs on the first try.
Explore ServicePower’s mobile workforce solution.