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How to Use Field Data to Improve Service Operations

What is Field Service Data?


Field service data is the information that Field Service Organizations (FSOs) collect, with the field being anywhere that workers provide service or interact with customers. Field service companies typically generate masses of field service data from customers, equipment, assets, technicians, and logistics.

Field service data is integral to understanding the customer experience and gaining valuable insight into organizational strengths and weaknesses. Below is an expert guide on field service data and how to use field data for better field service operations.

Why is Field Service Data Important?


Field service data allows FSOs to make critical data-driven decisions. Data-driven decision-making is an approach to ensure that decisions made within a company aren't simply made on personal observation or instincts, but backed by hard data from credible sources.

There are several benefits to leveraging data-driven decision-making in the modern field service industry, including:

Greater transparency and accountability. Organizations are more accountable when they properly collect and manage objective data while using it for compliance and record-keeping.
Continuous improvement and innovation. Data-driven decision management opens up space for innovation and improvement. FSOs can implement incremental changes, monitor vital metrics, and improve service based on captured data. Notably, customer feedback can push the business in the proper direction.
Clear feedback for market research. Data-driven decision–making enables FSOs to formulate new services, products, and workplace initiatives, and identify trends. Investigating historical data helps organizations know what to anticipate in the near future and discover the necessary changes to improve their performance and competence.
Faster decision-making process. Accurate analytical insights assist organizations in solving multiple challenges at once. By removing the guesswork from decision-making, organizations can tackle problems faster and with fewer mistakes. Moreover, historical data helps inform performance patterns, making it easier for managers to understand what levers they need to pull moving forward.
Enhanced Customer Experience. Data can help optimize and improve the customer experience. With customer survey data, FSOs are empowered to understand the challenges that customers face in the field. This data is incredibly valuable to FSOs, and they can use it to implement solutions geared toward improving their future customer experience.
Better Technician Retention. Simultaneously, data can also help to improve the technicians' experience. Organizations can use data to understand the technicians' experience to implement solutions for any challenges they face. Consequently, this helps to attract and retain top talent


How to Use Field Data for Better Field Service Operations


Improving field service operations is easy with field service data. Here are the best ways FSOs can leverage field service data.


1. Invest in Intelligent Field Service Management Software 


Intelligent field service management software enables FSOs to collect diverse types of field data that are pivotal to improving operations. Key features of a field service management software suite include optimized scheduling, dispatch, contractor management, parts and inventory management, route optimization, a self-service customer portal, work order management, and field service analytics. These features help FSOs with fast and accurate data collection and management.


2. Set Operational Goals


Setting goals helps organizations to improve on performance as well as customer and technician experiences. However, not all goals are able to improve operations. Often, organizations set themselves up for failure by setting unrealistic goals. On the other hand, SMART goals set an organization up for success by making goals Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic, and Timely. 

Likewise, realistic and detailed SMART goals give an organization a deeper sense of direction, hold FSOs accountable, and also provide visibility into potential roadblocks for success.


3. Track Key Service Metrics


Field service metrics should relate to the organization’s established operational goals and field service best practices. The top 3 key service metrics to use for field service best practices include:

First Time Fix Rate (FTFR): This is the percentage of time a field technician can fix a service issue during the first appointment. The formula for calculating FTFR is:

FTFR = Total Service Requests Completed On First Visit / Total Service Requests Completed.

Mean Time to Service (MTTS): This is the ability of an FSO to schedule, dispatch, and route a field service tech to a customer appointment on time. It also reflects the efficiency of field service operations. The calculating formula is:

MTTS = The Total Scheduled Technician Servicing Time / Number of Times of Service.

Mean Time to Fix (MTTF): This is the average time required to troubleshoot and repair an appliance or piece of equipment. Likewise, this metric is especially important for the customer experience because it reflects how long a customer must wait before their issue is resolved. The calculating formula for MTTF/ MTTR is:

MTTF = Total Time Spent on Repairs During Any Given Period / Number of Repairs. 


4. Analyze the Results

Reviewing your goals and field data regularly, monthly or quarterly, helps to renew your focus as well as check for possible data inaccuracies. Moreover, by reviewing this valuable data in a comprehensive field service dashboard, FSOs can identify both positive and negative patterns in performance. Consequently, organizations can address worrying patterns that need to be fixed or maintain positive patterns that are beneficial to business.


5. Find the Story


Field service reports help organizations discover and leverage actionable insights that drive success. With organized and detailed reports, it’s easy for field service staff to find and understand the story behind the data. And finding the story and meaning of the data is one of the most critical factors in driving operational success. 


Investing in the Right Field Service Management Solution


Most of the jobs in the field service industry are time-sensitive. Organizations must think proactively, coordinate staff, and follow-through in an organized and timely manner. Conducting these workflows manually can cause redundancies, delays, and leave room for costly errors that negatively impact the customer experience, and in turn the bottom line

Field service data helps FSOs to make data-driven decisions, which helps to enhance forecasting and planning as well as improve operational efficiency. Collecting and managing field service data also ensures a fully optimized technician and customer experience. 

Using field service data requires intelligent field service management software with key features such as optimized scheduling, dispatch, contractor management, and more. Acquiring the best software solution is necessary to collect the most compelling data and package the data in an actionable way. 

The right field service management solution streamlines the completion of tasks, reduces operating costs, and allows for remote or virtual field service operations.

Discover how software can help to accelerate ROI in your field service organization. 

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