Managers with responsibility for operational and service areas of the business, need to know what is happening in their organization at any time, that is a given. The manager needs to have this visibility, from wherever they are. Whether they are in the office or out and about they need to have a good understanding of what is actually happening. Not from what was planned for the day or from what they are being told, but what is happening in real-time and at any time.
Information needs to be simple to access. It needs to be easy to understand, accurate and instant. Ideally access to job status, customer information, location information, asset information and notifications should all be in one place.
The ultimate of any field service solution is quite simply better visibility of the workflow to and from the field. Ease of integration is a key part of any new solution as an integrated field service solution means that the two-way flow of data and information is captured just once and in a consistent and efficient way. It means that no data is left unused or delayed while waiting on paperwork to be finished or for collected information to be downloaded and an audit trail is in place reducing the chance of any lost or missing information.
All areas of the business can then have visibility of what they need to access, making their work more straightforward and productive.
Here we look at the benefits different parts of the business can get from the improved visibility that field service solutions bring:
The Business Owner/Manager
For the business owner, or manager, reports can be easily accessed on any criteria as systems are linked and ‘speak’ to each other. The health of the business can be easily monitored and customizable reports can be run on jobs, revenue, inventory, employee hours, customer surveys, invoices and customer data.
Profitability can be reviewed by customer, service or product allowing focus on driving higher overall revenue and increased margins.
The Service Manager
The service manager can see real-time status updates of all jobs (scheduled, started, paused, completed) across the teams and also assess the productivity of individual staff members across jobs and tasks.
Workflow can become automated reducing paperwork and eliminating lost or delayed time through scheduling improvements and job completion rates.
They have this visibility from wherever they are, whether in the office or not as all information can be easily accessed through their mobile device.
For the team in the office they can assign jobs faster with improved scheduling, increasing the number of jobs field technicians receive due to the reduced time. There is real-time visibility for scheduling and updating of jobs, significantly faster capture of customer information and service requests and the distribution of work orders is instantaneous.
There are significant time savings from the reduction or elimination of paperwork and the team or individual is then able to be more productive on other tasks.
The Field Technician
For a field worker improved visibility, through an integrated mobile solution, means they can do their job in the best possible way. Critical information can be accessed and shared in real time in the office and the field. Through integration with other back office systems, the field worker has access to the job history and customer records allowing for a more detailed understanding of not only the job they are going to but also what has happened before and why. Turning up to site and having this information on the job detail to hand or having access to it, means there is better chance of job resolution on this first visit and all the benefits this brings to an organization, the technician and the customer.
As the work gets recorded, the work and travel time can be accurately recorded for allocating to customer accounts and also through integration with other systems, the data can be exported into HR applications. This part of the automated process helps to limit erroneous overtime costs and reduce payroll errors.
For those in the finance team invoices can be automated immediately upon job completion. A work order, for example, can be issued, then on job completion the customer can be invoiced immediately, achieving a quicker payment cycle through this order to cash automation. Data can be transferred electronically between systems, making accounting and payroll tasks more efficient and accurate.
Financial reporting becomes more straightforward as customizable reports include all the relevant information on revenue, costs and employees.
Real-time visibility provides many of the answers a field service organization will need to better-manage the day to day operations and deal with whatever the day demands across the entire business.
For more information on improving visibility and where to start see our infographic on The Key to Visibility in Field Service: Twenty Questions to Ask Yourself.
To find out more about FieldAware join one of our 30-minute webinar.