As a member of a fast-moving field service management organization, each day is different. You’ve got multiple variables coming in and out of play, hour-by-hour. You’ve got your eyes on your customers, your team of technicians, your parts inventory, appointment locations, scheduling, invoicing, and more – all day long.
It’s safe to say that efficiently running a field service organization is no walk in the park, even for the most dedicated, experienced, and detail-oriented directors and managers.
But in 2019, these directors and managers have the opportunity to take advantage of powerful, automated mobile technology that is completely transforming the field service industry.
According to Capterra’s Field Service Management Trends for 2018:
“...the nature of field technician mobility is changing. Previously, a field technician’s mobility was a simple necessity: they had to go where something was to fix it. Field service management software, however, makes technician mobility part of a bigger, better integrated experience for the customer. For example...the ability to pull up a customer’s service licensing agreement, as well as that customer’s history. Rather than having to visit (or call) the main office, technicians get all the information they need on-site, improving the quality of their service.”
And these functionalities are merely scratching the surface of all that field service management software is capable of this year. To learn more explore what new technology is emerging in field service.
This 2019 guide provides factual insight for field service management professionals who may be considering an investment in a positive, profitable transformation: utilizing field service software. Below, we’ll walk you through all the variables to consider before you make this business and customer transformation. We’ll dive into specific ways this proactive, AI-based technology empowers technicians, engages with customers, improves operations, and more.
1. Evaluate the Price of the Field Service Management Solution
When you’re shopping around for field service management software, you’re looking at many factors before you come to a final decision. One of the most important influencers in your decision-making process is naturally going to be the price of the field service software suite. Depending on which mobile platform you’re considering, you’ll either be charged a one-time, or monthly, fee. You also may be charged an installation fee, which can vary depending on the size of your company.
When considering cost as a variable, it boils down to how much training, how much support, and how many added features your company would like to include to fill specific business needs. At the end of the day, selecting field service management software is about taking advantage of features that remove bottlenecks, manual processes, and wasted time for a price that fits within your business’ budget.
2. Research the Field Service Management Software Functionalities
In addition to considering the price of potential field service management software solutions, it’s extremely important to pay close attention to the functionalities the mobile service platform offers you.
You’ll want to take advantage of the following functionalities to streamline the way you run your mobile workforce:
- Customer engagement
- Workforce scheduling and route optimization
- Contractor management
- Warranty claims management
- Business intelligence
- IoT enablement
Each of these features, when powered by intelligent, AI-based technology, removes a previously manual, extremely time-consuming task, reaping tremendous rewards for your business.
Capterra’s Field Service Management Trends for 2018 notes that utilizing workforce scheduling software and contract management software with these kinds of features is worth its weight in gold:
“Handling billing and scheduling for even a small number of technicians can become complicated, and automating these processes allows staff to focus mental energy on other issues.”
Be sure to document the current processes your field service management company follows before evaluating field service software solutions. This will give you a holistic overview of all the tasks that need to be completed; you’ll then be able to easily see how each automation feature can streamline that specific process to save your organization time, money, and avoidable frustration.
With a streamlined business process and more time, you can focus on growth initiatives to positively impact your bottom line.
3. Evaluate Whether the Reporting Capabilities Offer Real-Time,
In order to assess whether you’re growing your bottom line, service organizations need on demand, intuitive access to real-time customer data. How is it possible to evaluate effectiveness without metrics? When you’re selecting field service management software to potentially adopt, be sure its functionality enables you to experience the true benefits of tracking business data.
Look for reporting metrics such as:
- Job status
- Inventory analysis
- Customer feedback
- Account collections
- Employee performance
By having access to software that automatically generates in-depth, analytical reports, you’ll be able to truly assess the state of your business, identify the weak points, and take action to further examine and strengthen those areas to empower your technicians and satisfy your customers.
4. Verify the Ease of Implementation to Minimize Business Risk and Enable Smooth, Rapid Adoption
Once you’ve considered the functionalities you’ll utilize, as well as how much those functionalities will cost on a one-time or monthly basis, it’s crucial to consider how easy it will be to start using a new automated field service software. Is it easy to implement, or will it require a more complicated technical implementation?
With the explosion of field service management software and its dramatic impact on the entire field service management industry, when it comes to choosing a specific product to pilot, you have choices.
To ensure this field service software implementation is as seamless as possible, be sure to:
- Plan and document the implementation process
- Communicate clearly with your team
- Enable technicians with mobile devices
- Pilot the solution with one team
- Invest in foundational training technicians need to make a smooth transition
- Inform your current and potential customers about your new mobile field service software and give them a preview of the benefits they’ll experience
If you can avoid a deeply complicated implementation by selecting the right service provider, the implementation and subsequent business adoption is likely to be even smoother.
Field Service Software Solutions Offer Innovative, Automated Ways to Boost Your First Time Fix Rates
In 2019, field service is all about automation.
Remove time-consuming, manual tasks to transform the way your business operates. Automatically route the most well-matched technicians in nearby areas to jobs via route scheduling features, easily generate customer invoices via mobile devices, and more. With the right functionalities, for the right price, combined with an efficient implementation, your mobile workforce will perform better and your customer ratings will soar.