Field service management is critical in today’s reality where businesses are looking to cut costs and increase efficiency, while retaining customer satisfaction and loyalty. But, with operations spread out across large areas and resources distributed in many locations, it has its own unique challenges
Assigning work orders to the right field technicians and engineers poses a difficulty. Unless given at the right place at the right time and with the right inventory, costs are likely to increase and productivity likely to fall
If planning and scheduling is not optimized, costly technician time will be wasted on long, unnecessary trips or waiting time. Inefficiencies will also occur by sending unsuitable technicians (due to lack of skills) or by sending technicians without the required inventory.
Managers must know at all times both where their field service personnel are located and their availability, to allow them to prioritize and complete the work or supplement the workload.
Customers have high expectations regarding customer service, which puts field service managers under pressure to get it right all the time
Yet many things can go wrong. The organization may not meet its service agreement (SLA) with its customers and the length of time (Lead Time) it takes to provide the installation or service may be longer than expected. Technicians may arrive too late for appointments (Late Shows) or not arrive at all on the set day (No Shows). Repeat service calls are annoying for customers and low First Time Fix rates damage the overall efficiency of the organization.
In B2B companies, the high-downtime of machines harms the company’s revenue. It can also lead to an increase in the cost and decrease in the level of service – impairing competitiveness. The last mile of your service chain is what customers remember and can leave a good or bad impression.
However, given the right automation systems and tools, field service managers can overcome their challenges and keep expenses under control