Blog | ServicePower

Don’t Just Get to the Customer – Make Sure You Have the Right Part

Written by Aly Pinder | April 18, 2016

What metrics determine the success of your field service organization? Worker productivity? SLA compliance? Wrench time?

These are all great metrics. But these metrics primarily tell a story that is internal to the service organization and does not directly reflect value-add to customers. This is why top performing field service organizations have prioritized customer facing metrics such as customer satisfaction, service profitability, and customer retention to determine success in 2016. These metrics highlight the convergence between delivering customer value and driving at profitable growth.

So how can service organizations ensure they are successful in both of these key aspects of field service?

The answer lies in an often forgotten area when thinking of the field — service parts. As seen in Aberdeen Group’s Field Service Workforce Management: Empower Tech 3.0 report, more than half of all service visits require a spare part to resolve the issue. Without the right part, more than half of all service calls will result in a dissatisfied customer and a secondary truck roll. Can you afford this type of success rate? 

If you say yes 50% is good enough, I would warn you that one customer is no longer just ONE customer. As networks are more connected, the voice of the customer has empowered customers with the ability to turn one bad experience into lost business both now and in the future. Therefore, top performing organizations have sought to gain better visibility into service parts and the future of service demand (see Figure 1 below).

Figure 1: Fix it the First Time with the Right Parts

This connection has enabled the Best-in-Class to ensure that they can accurately plan for future customer and asset needs, and that the right resources are available and dispatched to the right customer to fix issues on the first interaction. Visibility into current resource allocations and the real-time changes in service needs is a challenge that many organizations struggle with. This is partially because the focus has been on turning wrenches, and the emphasis on resolution has been diminished. But top performers have invested in technology to ensure a technician only leaves a customer once the issue is resolved. And this demands that the right technician with the right skills has the right part to solve the issue.

Happy customers equal profitable growth for service. In order to achieve this result, service organizations must deliver value and resolution. Don’t let your customers down; they expect service to excel at solving problems, and technicians’ success will lead to a win-win for all parties.