This blog post by Microsoft details benefits of connected field service and outlines five ways to tell when a company is ready to equip their organization with connected field service.
The future of field service is here. Are you ready to take the next step?
A piece of equipment experiences a problem, and the customer calls. You dispatch a technician who goes to the site and runs diagnostics. If you’re lucky, all the right parts are on the truck and it’s an easy fix. But what if additional equipment or follow-ups are needed to complete the repairs? That costs you time, money, and mileage, and the customer isn’t pleased with the added downtime.
Now, what if …
The equipment had a sensor system that tells you something’s going wrong before the customer even notices a problem? It runs basic diagnostics and does some troubleshooting on its own to identify the specific issues and to rule out—or even fix—the simplest problems. You either save your tech a trip entirely, or the system sends you details about the problem and generates a work order. Your field service technician is automatically assigned and briefed on the issue, the equipment history, and important customer details. The technician arrives with all the right stuff, making your company look proactive and highly competent. The customer is impressed and happy with the reduced downtime. And you have transformed your field service function from break/fix to smart solutions that keep systems online at lower cost.
Going beyond typical break/fix field service ops
This isn’t the future. It’s called connected field service. Connected field service combines sensors, the cloud, and Internet of Things (IoT) technology with a robust field service management solution. Sensors and systems can be fairly basic or highly sophisticated, depending on your needs.
Here’s how it works: The cloud-connected sensor sends an alert to the field service management system. If an anomaly is detected, the system takes action. A basic connected field service system can automatically schedule and dispatch a technician. A more advanced setup performs additional diagnostics or takes specific actions—performing a restart or going through more detailed troubleshooting—before generating a work order.
Five ways to know if it’s right for your company
We’ve identified key indicators for when a company is ready to take their field service organization to the next level with connected field service:
- You are already using a field service management tool successfully.
- You want your technicians to move beyond break/fix.
- There is an appetite for technology adoption across the business.
- You want (and need) to improve KPIs (key performance indicators).
- You are thinking about how to create new revenue streams.
Both scalable and simple to start
Connected field service isn’t hard to set up. You and your customers start reaping the benefits right away. If you just want to dip your toe in the water, start with a simpler configuration and add-on services as your organization adapts and grows. Then start thinking about where else this technology can take you, such as growing your business through servitization.
Connected field service is already installed at customer sites around the world. Businesses are reducing costs, increasing technician productivity, seeing higher customer satisfaction, raising first-time fix rates, and improving KPIs.
Is it time for your organization to make the shift from a break/fix repair model to a never-fail service model? Find out with 5 ways to know you are ready for connected field service.