Five Habits to Break to Excel at Field Service Today

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End your reliance on historical data in regard to service demand. Clinging to historical trends may work in industries that remain stagnant year after year. However, in the service industry, customers’ needs and resources fluctuate drastically. As a result, organizations must improve forecasting of and planning for future demands in order to anticipate problems before they arise.

Don’t let outdated information for parts and labor run your operation. Businesses should increase the availability of service knowledge in order for field agents to diagnose and resolve issues more quickly than in the past. The primary reason why technicians are not able to resolve an issue the first time is because they lack the correct part to fix a given issue. Not having up-to-date information on which parts are available throughout the service network greatly hinders an organization’s ability to resource the field appropriately. Even worse, if they feel like information is stale, technicians will begin to hoard parts so they don’t show up empty handed, further clogging the network.

Old tools no longer support the 21st century technician or customer. The story of the efficient field service organization running on paper is beginning to fade. However, that doesn’t mean we have slain the dragon. Businesses need to continue to improve how efficiently technicians are provided data and how easily they can access insights while in the field. Top performing organizations continue to invest in mobile tools to provide field technicians with better access to information in order to support resolution.

Stop watching dots slowly moving on a map. In order to understand what I mean, let me give you an example. If I wanted an update on my favorite baseball team a few years ago, I would watch the ‘gamecast’ which would show little tiny dots moving around the base pads. However, recent developments in high-speed internet connections and mobile devices have enabled me to watch my favorite team in high definition on my phone. Technological advancements have a similar potential to revolutionize field service. Organizations now have access to a wealth of real-time information on techs, fleets, equipment, and customers, as well as the ability to interact, communicate, and adjust on the fly. No longer does a dispatcher have to be stuck in the back office, hoping that he or she isn’t sending multiple technicians to the same job based on a dot that hasn’t moved in a few hours.

The break / fix model has cracks. Once an asset, part, or piece of equipment fails, the business has to fight to recover. The service organization must leverage enhanced monitoring technologies to proactively identify future issues and schedule techs to solve problems before they occur. Customer productivity should not become an afterthought for the organization; instead, customer success must be viewed as success.

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