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How Should You Roll Out New Field Service Technology?

Many managers’ first instinct when getting a new field service system is to give the new technology to all of their technicians as quickly as possible.

An article on Service Management Online explains why that’s a mistake. Field services companies first need to have back office users become comfortable with the system.

“[Y]ou don’t want 25 engineers phoning up and asking how it works when the people in the office don’t understand it yet,” says Edward Palin, managing director of a field services business in the United Kingdom. “[A] phased implementation has worked really well for us.”

Deploying the technology to one or two technicians allows you work out the kinks before you roll it out company-wide. Fewer than five users for this pilot program can give the company a good sample and balanced feedback.

For example, Palin’s company used a phased approach for its new hardware rollout, starting with two engineers. That approach negated the expected resistance, he tells Service Management Online.

You will never work out all the finer details in a “lab” type of setting, but a handful of technicians with the right attitude who provide balanced feedback can be very important to the success of the deployment.

Of course, the profile of the technician is important for these tests. A positive attitude can make continuous process improvement possible for 100 technicians.

Source: Service Management Online, August 2012

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