It used to be that field technicians would quickly fill out an invoice and move on to the next customer. Now, they’re dealing with an increasing amount of administrative work on site.
That’s why having a mobile device strategy is so important, especially if you’re driving more than 50 percent of your revenue through services provided in the field. The right strategy can shorten your company’s time to payment.
An article on Ragsdale’s Eye On Service blog highlights five questions to focus on when devising a plan.
- Do you own or outsource your field service staff? You’ll need a simple mobile strategy if most of your field agents are contracted. If you own your resources, you can be more creative with devices and applications.
- What should you mobilize first? Increased productivity from more accurate scheduling and dispatching drive the biggest ROI improvements. Figure out the GPS aspect of your mobile strategy up front, so you can use it to drive scheduling and routing efficiencies.
- Which device should you use? Mobile apps for field technicians and professionals must be quick and easy to use. They prefer everything in one screen. Technicians won’t use it if you make them page through multiple screens constantly.
- Is online/offline capability necessary? Connectivity may not be available in all field service environments. In the medical device industry, where you’re servicing equipment in hospitals, service technicians don’t have Internet access because it can interfere with the medical equipment. That means collecting service data on equipment must be done offline and synced later.
- How do you ensure security? Make sure the device has an option to remotely wipe data if a field technician loses it. You don’t want corporate information or customer data to fall into the wrong hands.
Source: Ragsdale’s Eye on Service, June 2012