For high value services, being smart about the way a large project is handled starts with keeping in mind the field service processes that will take a job from start to finish. High value service processes have more steps than your typical service job, since multiple engineers work on these projects over the course of a number of days. Because of the large scale of these projects, being an efficient field service company benefits your field service workers and your customers.
Below we’ve listed each step of the process:
Service Request Management
Service request management is at the start because it causes the following steps to be initiated. The processes begin when there’s a new service repair request received through a customer service channel; be it via phone, email, social media, or a direct alert remotely sent from the machinery itself. This request could also come thru a new customer order or a planned appointment visit based on an existing service level agreement (SLA). The service call needs to be documented and classified in order to be assigned a priority level. Some problems or service calls can be directly resolved on the phone and don’t need further attention. Others are urgent and need to be dealt with straight away.
This is the process of making sure that the equipment is ready to receive the service that has been ordered. Depending on the age of the piece of machinery, process engineering will help determine the best way to plan doing the job by assessing the history, installed base, and equipment documentation. Once these items have been assessed, work tasks can be listed in a dynamic checklist in the field service software to be assigned to the engineers who will complete the repair. This type of checklist adjusts subsequent steps to techs' answers to specific questions about each project task.
Supply Chain Management (SCM)/Logistics
With the dynamic checklist built, the next step is for necessary parts to be ordered and delivered to the inventory warehouse or service truck, so that the technicians have access to the items they’ll need when they’re on-site to service the machine. Field service software includes automated inventory management including real-time inventory tracking and monitoring to ensure vans are properly stocked. Only after the parts have been ordered can the dispatchers schedule the service appointment.
The next step is to assign team leaders who can help figure out a start date for the project and dispatch field service engineers to complete the service. Each engineer assigned to the job should be equipped with both the skills and the parts necessary to fix the equipment once on-site. Since many engineers are assigned to a complex project, it is also necessary to check which engineers should be on-site first, and which engineers will need to attend to the problem at a later stage.
With everything assigned and scheduled, it’s time to get to work and service the equipment. Field service engineers use dynamic checklists that were created during the Process Engineering phase to complete the tasks assigned to them. Within these checklists, engineers may have to collect data and upload and annotate photos of the equipment they are servicing and the repairs they are making, which also allows them to create detailed reports after a job has been done.
Once the engineers have completed their jobs, dynamic checklists can be used to create amazing, detailed reports on the work that was done. The team leader can review each step that was ticked off the list, along with any uploaded attachments. Reports can also be downloaded for the customer to review exactly what work was done on their machine, along with other invoice-related information such as how many hours engineers worked and what new parts were used.
Now that reports have been generated for both the team leader and the customer, it’s time to close the job. Once the customer has reviewed the reports, they can check to see if there are any discrepancies that might lead them to receive an invoice that they feel is incorrect. If there’s nothing wrong with project report, the customer can sign off on the project using the mobile service app.
Once the customer has signed off on the service, the final process is for the field service company to generate an invoice via the field service software that can be sent directly to the customer. Since technicians collect billing information and data on the spot with field service software, invoices can be generated more quickly, which means customers can pay faster. And the service process is then complete.