Feb 28

Lower operating costs and increase productivity with field service management software

Posted by : Romain Vinet / Labels : , ,

Lower operating costs and increase productivity with field service management software

Today, most service organizations recognize that the right software and paperless processes are key to reducing operating expenses. All it takes is the right technologies to make it happen.

Leading service companies rely on technology and automation

According to a July 2017 Aberdeen Group study the best-performing service companies are up to three times more likely companies to increase spending on new technologies than lower-performing companies — 39% compared to 13%. These same high-performing companies are also 93% more likely than their average counterparts to have automated service management.
 

Eliminate unnecessary operating costs

While some costs can seem essential to get the job done, every day new technologies emerge that can dramatically improve business operations.
Most service companies have now moved to fully paperless processes. They’ve recognized that paper-based processes put the security and life span of data at risk. They’ve also recognized that all tasks involving paper come with extra costs. With the move to fully digital operations, all of these expenses — printers, paper, ink cartridges, physical storage, and postage to name just a few — disappear.
 

Increase productivity

The automation capabilities that become possible with digital operations also help your teams become more productive. When technicians no longer have to fill out paper forms and deliver them back to the office, they can spend more time serving customers and less money on fuel.
 
If your field service management software includes instant messaging capabilities such as the Praxedo solution does, you can also save money on phone bills. Now everyone in the organization can easily collaborate and share information.

Efficiency is key to lowering costs

The costs associated with unnecessary and inefficient travel, poor management of spare parts and expertise that can’t be easily accessed by technicians in the field can all be avoided. With field service management software, service companies have the automation capabilities needed to address these challenges and keep costs down.
 

Solve the planning puzzle

Dedicated field service management software that includes the latest technologies quickly becomes an indispensable tool that simplifies operations.
For example, the Praxedo solution includes global positioning technology that can be connected to a fleet management solution such as TomTom WEBFLEET or Fleet Freedom. With these capabilities, dispatchers have real-time access to location information for each employee in the field so they can optimize travel times.
 
For example, dispatchers can very quickly send a nearby technician to an urgent situation without making a phone call. And they can update schedules while taking into account traffic volumes along routes and the tools that each technician is carrying in the field.
 
These benefits can only be delivered by a cloud-based solution that supports full mobility. With software-as-a-service (SaaS), technicians can use their mobile devices to access schedules, customer details, expert knowledge and updated information in real time, from anywhere. They have all of the information they need in their hands at all times.
 

Improve the experience for technicians and customers

When service technicians can spend less time traveling, on the phone, and dealing with last-minute changes, they experience lower stress levels, are less exhausted and enjoy a better overall work experience. Efficient and worry-free operations help technicians become more productive and provide higher quality of service to customers.
Customers also benefit when your operations are streamlined and more efficient. They are fully informed about the status service activities at all times, aware of any delays and immediately updated about changes to technician arrival times. With better response times, you’re much more likely to meet guaranteed repair times and comply with contractual commitments.

Put data to work for your business

Using data to analyze your service management operations helps you proactively address potential issues and understand productivity levels with a higher degree of accuracy.
 

Use real-time data to anticipate issues

Monitor and track activities in the field in real time to proactively take actions that prevent problems. With the Praxedo cockpit dashboard (https://en.praxedo.com/features/guided-tour/dispatcher/activity-report/cockpit-dashboard/), you have configurable, real-time insight into what’s happening in the field so you can better organize people and activities to avoid problems. For example, if you see a high number of urgent service calls, you can reallocate technicians on-the-fly to make sure the right expertise is provided in each situation.
 

Go deep

Understanding technician productivity and efficiency in the field is not as simple as knowing how many service calls a technician completed in a day. You need to understand:

  • Why a service call took longer than expected
  • Why the issue could not be resolved
  • Whether the technician missing crucial information or expertise
  • Whether the technician was missing basic knowledge or whether more advanced expertise was required
  • Whether the initial time estimates for service calls were realistic for the issue being addressed or whether they were overly optimistic

 
With access to centralized data, you can better evaluate your progress against key performance indicators (KPIs). KPIs are a valuable way for service companies to assess and track their efforts against performance targets to optimize operations. But, they are often underused and underestimated by field service companies: 27% of team leaders admit they have never used KPIs and only 12% think they use KPIs effectively.
 
As more and more connected devices are deployed and the Internet of Things (IoT) is more widely used, preventive maintenance will become more important than repairs for service companies. Analyzing data and putting the required maintenance measures in place before problems occur will help service companies saves costs, avoid emergencies and increase customer satisfaction.
 
 

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About the author

Romain Vinet is a Product Manager at Praxedo, a leader in field service management software. He is an expert in software-as-a-service (SaaS) technologies and in web and mobile application development strategies.

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