Some things in the field service world remain true, no matter how large the field service organization is. Customer demands are increasing, they are expecting a higher level of service, and field service providers are having to meet those demands. It doesn’t matter if you’re a large multinational company, or a small, local service provider, field service is field service to your customers. They just want the job done right and fast.
When enterprise-level corporations turn to field service software, they are doing so to automate many of their processes, offer their technicians greater access to information in the field, and improve their business overall. SMB field service providers need to think the same way. While they may not need the same level of automation an enterprise-level corporation would, the challenges in the field service industry are universal. And with field service management software, large, enterprise service companies are starting to pull away.
It’s time for the SMB field service providers to think of a strategy that includes an SMB field service software solution. Even with a smaller workforce to dispatch and schedule, the challenges SMB field service providers face is the same as larger providers:
- Technician schedules need to be optimized to fit more service calls in
- Technicians need more access to service history to help with repairs
- Technicians want to spend less time on administrative work and more time working
By using an SMB field service software, smaller, local service providers can start to level the playing field and take advantage of new opportunities. They can match the challenge of their much larger competition with the same field service software solution that is helping them succeed. SMB service providers are looking at these main strategies to deliver better service with SMB field service software.
Increase Service Knowledge
Speed of repair is a metric that customers think is very important. They want fast service that is done right the first time. High first-time fix rates are paramount, regardless if you are an enterprise-level company, or a SMB field service provider. To complete repairs faster, technicians need greater access to information to get a diagnosis, determine what parts they need, and figure out the right procedure to complete the work. As equipment gets more complex, the solution gets more complex with it. That’s why SMB field service software is becoming a solution a smaller provider is turning to, to gain additional information.
Previous service history can be stored in the field service management software for technicians in the field to access. Even the smallest, local company needs help diagnosing complex equipment. Give your technicians the tools they need to increase their knowledge, without it coming at the customers expense in greater time on the job site.
Real-time Visibility into Field Resources
SMB field service providers don’t have the same manpower their larger competition has, but it’s still tricky for dispatchers who must react to incoming calls, without knowing exactly where their resources are. Having real-time visibility into the field gives dispatchers the ability to react quickly to changes in service. When emergency calls come in, they can check their resource routing map to see where their technician is, or who is the closest to the call. Visibility into the activities in the field isn’t just for large corporations, as SMB field service providers who have limited resources need to be nimble to excel at delivering service. Because if the smaller company can’t get the job done, you know your customer will turn to the large one that has the resources to do so.
Improved Forecasting and Using Subcontractors
All field service organizations have the same issue: how do you predict what service is going to look like a week, a month or more, from now. What challenges will you face in the future and will you need more technicians to complete service calls. Forecasting has become increasing important for field service providers so that technicians aren’t scrambling to meet increasing demands. With analytical reporting with SMB field service software, service managers can see when they have peaks in service, what is their heaviest service call, and how efficient each technician is.
SMB field service providers have limited resources as it is, so if demand exceeds their capabilities, subcontractors may be brought in to ease the workload. SMB field service software has subcontractor management tools to help with on-boarding, quoting, pushing work orders to them and issuing payment vouchers. SMB field service providers don’t need to be caught off guard when spikes in service happens, as there are software solutions to help excel at service.
Investing in the Right Mobile Tools
It’s time for even SMB field service providers to move away from paper-based work orders and embrace the mobile field service environment. A field service mobile app is the tool that will level the playing field and have long-lasting effects on service delivery. It’s with the mobile app that
- Technicians will access information from the field
- Dispatcher will get real-time visibility into their technician’s lives
- Subcontractors will use to accept and complete work orders
With any good SMB field service software, mobility will be a driving force behind the exceptional service you will provide. Even at the small, local level, time technicians are spending driving back to the office to get work orders, or sitting in their truck finishing work orders, is time they could be driving to a new call or working on a new call. With mobility, time is freed up, work orders are automatically sent back to the head office, and more instructions, checklists and supporting documents can be made available.
SMB Field Service Providers Need to Think Enterprise
Just because you service a smaller area, doesn’t mean your service can’t be taken to the next level. Your competition at the enterprise-level is adding field service management software to their organization. They are taking advantage of better scheduling tactics, increased analytics, automation and mobility. And there are no reason SMB field service providers shouldn’t be as well.
Level the playing field with the largest competition but using the same tools they use. Add an SMB field service software to your service department and enjoy the same benefits at the local level.