Every head of field service has to deal with a number critical questions when managing service jobs on complex machinery. Especially, if your business is thinking about switching from a paper-based system to field service automation, you will have to ask yourself the questions below. Read on to find the answers.
1. How can I reduce the downtime of machines, so my client can work smoothly?
Field service software allows technicians to get machines back up and running quickly, thanks to their ability to access the machine’s complete history on a mobile device. Techs can see what other repairs were done and what technicians did on previous occasions. This way, techs will spend less time diagnosing, and also have access to parts inventory to have all the tools to fix the machine the first time.
2. How do I manage my SLAs?
With field service software, you can analyze data collected in the field to see if your service level agreements are being met. Additionally, you’ll have the ability to manage your service contracts and have access to items such as warranty information, so you can determine whether or not a customer is entitled to free service, for example.
3. Do my field service technicians need access to the ERP system?
If your techs need access to customer history while onsite, it’s great for them to have access to the ERP system. Giving them access not only allows techs to see customer history, but also to manage inventory easily. They’ll also have the ability to do data entry immediately while on-site. Also, field service software simplifies their selling process by letting techs upsell and cross-sell using the customer’s information that’s accessible via the application.
4. How can service technicians collaborate better?
When it comes to large or long-term projects, where multiple engineers are involved, they need to have the ability to collaborate. Using workforce management software, technicians can be assigned specific tasks and collect and share information with each other. And with digital checklists, you can be sure techs have completed all of the tasks on the list, before using the software to complete a group checkout on the job.
5. Do my field service techs need to work offline and still have access to data?
In case your field service techs have to work in a variety of places and situations, you should ask yourself whether your field service solution should also work offline. If engineers are in remote locations or they do not have access to a client’s wifi network for security reasons, they should have access to data offline in order to be able to complete their jobs and still have all relevant information locked in the system.
6. How can I provide customers with instant detailed reports on what has been done?
There’s a crucial element that automation software lets technicians do, and that’s inputting data as they work. Aside from not having to complete a lot of paperwork once they get back to the office, immediate data entry and completing checklists allows them to create instant detailed reports that can be sent to customers.
7. How can I reduce invoice-times significantly?
Field service software allows businesses to invoice faster by letting technicians show detailed reports to customers on-site, which gives them the opportunity to see exactly what services and parts they’re being charged for and sign-off. It also lets back office staff to send invoices electronically to the customer, since the information entered by the engineers will automatically sync back to the ERP system in order for an invoice to be created.
8. How can I turn my service staff into successful sales people?
Imagine one of your techs is visiting a customer to repair a machine and he or she realizes that the machine is very old and there are new models your company is currently selling. Field service management software allows you to complete mobile sales of your products and services when visiting your customers. Once you have gained your customer’s trust, your field service techs become valued advisors on new products and services. And with their know-how, your techs often have a higher standing in the eyes of your customer than your sales personnel.
9. How can I reduce complexity in long-term service projects?
Your project manager can break down a service job into a number of projects, tasks, and subtasks, as well as create digital checklists assigning them to technicians with the appropriate skills. The engineers can then use these checklists to be guided through the service process. This is especially important in cases where dangerous equipment is being serviced. Mobile checklists simplify the process of getting tasks done on a long-term service project by breaking it down. It also allows younger field service personnel to start working earlier in the field as they can be guided step-by-step through the process.
10. How can I integrate collaborative multimedia content into my service solution?
Think of mobile field service application as your hub of information. With field service software, techs can take and annotate photos of broken parts and record notes. Then other technicians working on the project will be able to review the annotations and photos and know exactly what to fix or replace. These pictures can also be included in the report to make it more comprehensive for the customer.