If anyone involved in field service management had to summarize it, they would give you the four ‘Rs’ of field service – the right person, at the right place, at the right time, with the right tools.
You could simply say these are the four ‘Rights’ of field service management which are crucial to the success of the industry. Everything a field service organization does to improve dramatically affects one of those Rs. While the challenges are unique per industry and per organization, at the end of the day, field service management is about getting the proper people to the place they need to be, on time, and with the tools they need to succeed.
No matter if you are an enterprise-level organization or a small-to-medium business, those four Rs are fundamental to every field service outfit. Because of that, field service management software is being looked at as the bedrock to conquer those four Rs. It’s what CEOs, managers and technicians are turning to in their time of need to deliver better service, make people more efficient, and make customers happier. How you deliver on those four Rs is the difference between successful service or not, so getting a field service management software to drive success in those areas will help drive your company’s success.
Here is how field service management software is delivering on the four Rs of field service management and empowering service delivery.
The RIGHT Person
If you think the first R in field service management is just about selecting the right person to perform service, you’re missing the global issue of what selecting the right technician does. The right technician can be defined many different ways:
- Skill set
- Location to service call
- Years of experience
- Familiarity with customer
- Flexibility in their schedule
Already, it’s not as simple as you may think trying to get the right person to the job. Dispatchers have plenty of things to think about when selecting a technician from their talent pool to schedule them an appointment. The right technician can mean different things to different organizations. It can mean different things to different customers and mean different things to different work orders.
What makes it important in the chain of four Rs is that a call can seriously go wrong if the right person isn’t selected. If the wrong technician is selected based on their skills and certifications, their location, or what else they have in their schedule, they can show up late to calls, miss them altogether, or get on site and realize they can’t complete the repair. Your first-time fix rates will drastically reduce if you aren’t selecting the right people for the job.
With field service management software, you can ensure the right technicians are selected. Start with a skill and certification search to narrow your workforce. Then using resource routing tools, find the nearest technician to the job, with availability in their schedule and optimize their route to include the service call. With field service management software, give yourself the best foot forward in nailing down the first R in field service management.
The RIGHT Place
When you have the right technician selected, the next obstacle is getting them to the right place. That seems pretty straight forward at the surface level. Give them an address and let them use GPS directions to get them to the job site. But like everything in field service management, it isn’t that simple. Service technicians have more than one call to make in a day, in different locations, with different part requirements. Getting them to the right place isn’t that simple in today’s field service environment.
With multiple service calls booked into their schedule, getting a technician to the right place could mean crisscrossing large territories and spending more time in their car driving to calls. That’s a lot of time being wasted when they could be performing service. Route optimization has now become a must in field service management and planning a route for technicians that makes sense. Dispatchers can now use the resource routing tools available in their field service management software to schedule their calls in a way that limits driving times. Put calls in order based on a route, rather than just scheduling what is open. By using this method, technicians can now fit more calls in their day because they are spending less time driving from job site to job site.
The RIGHT Time
It is very important that if your service call is scheduled for 3 p.m., your technician is on time and working by then. But the right time can also mean more than just the actual time scheduled on the work order. Resource routing tools, as shown above, can help with making sure technicians aren’t battling traffic conditions and are closer to their calls so they can make it on time. But the right time can also mean meeting agreements and never missing work orders as part of service level agreements and preventative maintenance contracts.
When it’s time for a service call as part of a contract, it’s imperative to be there when you said you will. Field service management software with contract management will automate the process to produce work orders, ensuring no call is missed. Don’t find yourself missing contracted service calls and get your technicians to their sites on time with routing tools and contract management systems.
The Right Tools
One of the main reasons technicians have to leave job sites is because they don’t have the right tools and parts. This requires a second appointment and can leave customers wondering why the technician didn’t show up prepared for the call. Field service management software helps with this by giving technicians full inventory controls from their field service mobile app.
Before a technician starts their day, they can review their appointments and make sure they have the proper parts with them. With integrated inventory, dispatchers and technicians can see exactly where parts are located, in which warehouse or truck. If the part is not in stock, dispatchers can place a requisition order to make sure they are in stock when the service call comes around. This increases first-time fix rates and ensures the parts the technician needs are available when they need them.
Getting it RIGHT the First Time
Field service management isn’t that simple. The four Rs of field service management have a lot of decisions involved in them. Field service management software is one way to handle all the challenges that come from them. It might be worth adding a fifth R to the mix and making sure to get it right the first time. With a field service management software, the right technician, based on many parameters, is getting to the job site faster, keeping customers happier, and completing service work with all the information they need. Get it right the first time, grow revenue, improve your first-time fix rates and drive service with the RIGHT field service management software.