The quality of your field service contributes to your overall customer service and experience. Great field service is one where the engineer arrives promptly (even better if they arrive before the customer realises there’s an issue) and fixes the problem the first time around. To ensure that, you need the visibility to assign the right engineer to the right task at the right time. That’s where a field service management solution comes in.
Here are six ways the right field service solution can benefit your business.
- Reduces paperwork
- Optimises scheduling
- Improves on-the-job efficiency
- Keeps knowledge base and customer history information up-to-date
- Ensures first-time fixes
- Enhances customer experience
1. Reduces paperwork
Managing physical sheets of paper or filling out Excel spreadsheets aren’t efficient ways to store and organise information. In terms of field service, it makes dispatching engineers, managing service contracts and keeping customer data up-to-date trickier tasks than they need to be.
Field service solutions eliminates the need for masses of physical paperwork because everything can be centralised in one system. This improves process efficiency and productivity as well as preventing data loss and the chance of duplicate data.
2. Optimises scheduling
If a field engineer with the right skills and expertise is assigned to a task, it’s much more likely that said task will be resolved the first time around. This is where field service solutions can help. The right one will:
- Help your dispatchers choose the right engineer at the right time, thanks to AI-driven scheduling recommendations and suggestions
- Help dispatchers assign tasks easily and quickly - for example, Microsoft Dynamics 365 (D365) Field Service features a drag-and-drop schedule board and an interactive map so finding the nearest available engineer and assigning them to a task is a much easier job
- Unlock dynamic scheduling and room to take on urgent tasks, thanks to the AI-enabled scheduling board combined with resource optimisation. Your dispatchers and field service managers can choose from manual, semi-automated or fully-automated scheduling
- Improve cost efficiency as routes are optimised. Every mile that your field engineers are taking to tasks are costing you money so you want to ensure they’re taking the shortest, most efficient routes possible
3. Improves on-the-job efficiency
A field service solution can help your engineers become more efficient while out on the field. For example, it can allow for cross-team collaboration, regardless of location. With D365 Field Service, for example, D365 Remote Assist enables your field engineers to connect with other experts in real-time to perform remote inspections and solve issues faster.
The right field service solutions will also be available as a mobile app or mobile-optimised platform. This means your engineers can:
- Manage their work orders and schedules
- Access customer data
- Capture photos, videos and voice notes, including electronic signatures from customers
- Use the app to automatically calculate work prices, taking into account the customer’s account details (e.g. any warranties or guarantees they may have, special pricing conditions etc)
4. Keeps knowledge base and customer history information up-to-date
Integrations with core business applications, such as D365 Field Service with Microsoft 365, allows your engineers to easily find and access the key documents they may need to complete tasks. Not only does this improve their efficiency and the likelihood of a first-time fix rate (we’ll discuss that in the next section), but it also means if one of your employees is on annual leave, sick, leaves or retires, the handover process can be much more streamlined and simplified.
Why? Because all the previous job history is kept up-to-date and stored in one central system, ready for the next employee to pick up. This also ensures your customer service and experience remains consistent.
5. Ensures first-time fixes
The more expertise and information a field engineer has for a particular task, the more likely it is that they’ll successfully complete the task on their first visit.
Let’s explain further by expanding on the capabilities of the right field service solution:
- It’s easier for your dispatchers to match engineers to tasks, according to their skills
- Field engineers gain access to in-context help, such as mixed-reality tools and resources that provide them with immersive, step-by-step guides to follow while conducting maintenance
- Remote collaboration is enabled so your engineers can consult with other experts, even when on the field, to solve issues and complete cases together
- Access to a mobile app means your engineers can manage their work orders and schedules, access customer data, capture photos, videos and voice notes - anything to help them successfully complete their jobs
- Dispatchers and field service managers can access rich insights dashboards so they can better analyse opportunities to boost first-time fix rates
6. Enhances customer experience
Field service solutions ensure first-time fixes by making it easier to match engineers to tasks and said engineers to access additional assistance while on-the-go, such as real-time customer and service data. This level of efficient service improves customer satisfaction and their overall experience.
And there’s more that a field service solution can do:
- Prevent service calls in the first place via IoT (Internet of Things) sensors which remotely monitor, detect and resolve issues before they become a problem
- If service calls can’t be prevented, IoT sensors feed real-time information to your field service team so they can monitor it and schedule engineers to resolve issues before they escalate. This turns your business towards a just-in-time predictive maintenance model which can improve cost efficiency
- Gain a 360-degree view of your customers, thanks to the solution’s ability to centralise data in one location. From asset locations to service level agreements and results from customer surveys, your entire field service team are empowered to meet and exceed customer expectations
Find out more about the features the right field service solution should offer
If you can provide an excellent field service experience for your customers, you can boost their satisfaction which, in turn, contributes to an outstanding customer service and experience overall. The right field service solution can help.
To find out more about the features and functionalities your field service solution should offer, check out our D365 Field Service factsheet below.