Implementing any new software system can be a daunting process, especially if the software takes the place of a way of working that has been used for a long time, no matter how inefficient the old method might be. This is especially true of field service, where we’ve discovered that many companies are making the transition from a paper-based system. But what we’ve also found is that once the fears are overcome, most of our customers wondered what took them so long. They enjoy all the benefits of automation, including a faster, cheaper, more efficient way of doing things.
Here are the top fears we’ve seen that prevent companies from automating their field service.
1. Fear of Change
The first fear is usually a general one – an unease that rocking the boat of how things have worked for ages will disrupt business and a dread of software integrations. But for businesses to grow, they need to embrace the changes that will ultimately lead to a more efficient, streamlined, less expensive way of working.
2. Fear of Disrupting Day-to-Day Business
How disruptive will new software integration be to the business is another fear that our customers often have. We give our customers a schedule of how long the integration will take and clearly lay out the process of how the integration will happen. When moving from a paper-based system, there isn’t as much disruption as customers have sometimes imagined. Moving to an automated system can be as simple as recording the same data on a tablet, rather than a piece of paper. For changes that involve old systems, we ensure that the existing software isn’t shut down until the new system is thoroughly tested and employees are comfortable with it.
3. Fear of How Technicians Will React to a New System
Some customers worry that their field technicians won’t want to learn a new way of doing things. Of course, with all new processes there is a learning curve. But for most technicians, fears that the new technology will be too intimidating and complex to learn are usually overblown. Field technicians are much more technologically savvy these days, especially as younger workers replace the aging workforce. Even older workers will find that the field service automation software is often as easy as clicking or tapping on buttons, or punching in data. One big benefit for technicians is capturing their notes and data on the job itself, eliminating the need to re-enter it once back at the office. Most technicians are happy to learn a new system if it means the administrative burden of their work is reduced.
4. Fear of No Connectivity
Field technicians are always on the move. Some of our customers work in remote or extreme environments and one of the greatest fears was what happens when technicians can’t connect? Cloud-based field service solutions can cache data offline so this is not an issue at all. Once the technician is back online, they simply need to update to ensure that data is captured.
Implementing a new software system doesn’t have to be a daunting process. With the right partner, upgrading to a more efficient, automated system can be done in parallel with an older system running in place with minimum disruption.