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The Impact of Automation on Field Service Management

Automation has introduced a paradigm shift in almost every field of human life. From manufacturing to transportation, from healthcare to utilities, there is hardly any sector that is left behind when it comes to leveraging this cutting-edge technology. But the one sector it has completely transformed is field service management. If you are running a field service business in today’s world, it is necessary to understand the impacts of automation and identify the competitive advantages of this disruptive technology.

Key Takeaways

Field service organizations have dedicated teams to manage various tasks and processes to achieve the goal of excellent service delivery. This demands close collaboration, quick reaction times, and an effective way of scheduling and dispatching service jobs. 

Organizations can use field service automation software to remove redundancy, digitize the gathering and use of task-related information, and assist dispatchers in swiftly assigning and scheduling appointments. Organizations can use field service software to accomplish the following:

  • Increased efficiency
  • Enhanced productivity
  • Lower operating costs
  • Shorter resolution time
  • Higher customer satisfaction

Automation is becoming more prevalent in industrial and business processes. Gartner projects that by 2024, 69% of managers’ day-to-day tasks will be completely automated. By decreasing work hours, risks, and the time it takes to execute daily tasks, automation enables executives to concentrate more on customer experiences, informed decision-making, and employee empowerment. 

A modern field service organization demands degrees of automation for allocating the proper experts to the right job as well as for delivering a seamless customer experience. But analog/ manual methods can no longer manage the schedules and deployment of hundreds of workers, track thousands of parts, and cover dozens of warranties in today’s enterprise field service companies. This is where automation takes the driver’s seat in fostering growth and ensuring efficiency in field service management.

If you are still managing your field service business using disparate data silos and complicated spreadsheets, it is time to reconsider your field service strategy by automating your business processes with the help of field service management software. 

Before you try to understand how automation is transforming field service, let’s first try to understand what field service automation is and how it works.

What is Field Service Automation?

Field service automation refers to the methods, policies, and procedures used by a service delivery organization to manage resources. To break it down further, the term “automation” refers to the primary technology features that help to streamline operations, policies, and even procedures. So, field service automation essentially means using technology to streamline processes and policies in field service management.

Field automation systems include simplified workflows and processes that automate important field service operations such as service task generation, service scheduling, dispatching, work order assignment, service reporting, and end-to-end service request tracking.

Benefits of Field Service Automation

Improve Efficiency

In general, automating any part of a business operation will increase the efficiency of an existing process. This is also true for Service Management automation. Many of the actions undertaken in field service operations are inefficient due to the complexity of the workflows. It includes performing redundant, repeated steps, which results in delayed resolution times.  With field service automation, you can streamline routine tasks used by both dispatch and field teams and enable an agile way of working, resulting in quicker service requests and technicians arriving at customer locations. Thus, by reducing lengthy interactions, field technicians may focus on greater responsibilities rather than resolving the situation and focusing on the fundamental cause to eliminate recurring incidents. 

Moreover, service management automation can increase a service desk’s efficiency by up to 30% while saving the business money on operating expenditures. Automation for Service Management can bring clarity to an overburdened general-service desk and help your support teams stay on track by simplifying administration, improving self-service capabilities, and reducing the number of repetitive operations.

Reduced Manual Effort and Labor Hours

Manual processes such as data analysis, tracking technicians, maintaining schedules, and managing service requests can be tedious. They are rather time-consuming and involve the risk of human error when done manually. Using automated systems instead not only eliminates the chances of manual errors but also reduces time and effort for your employees.

Remote Collaboration

One of the major pain points that field service companies face is a lack of coordination between their field technicians and the back office or among teams working at different job sites. This is perhaps the most significant aspect of how automation can help your business. 

When you use FSM software in your field organization, all of the critical field operations are centralized in one area, allowing you to streamline service delivery. In simple terms, coordination becomes more effective when your support staff has seamless access to company data and client portal details in a single location. Furthermore, most leading FSM solutions offer mobile apps for field service technicians, which means not only can they access this data easily, but they can also access it from anywhere without even having to ask the back office for help. 

Real-time Scheduling

Using a field service automation system, you have complete authority over the technician’s work schedule. You can view their availability, assign work orders, and dispatch from the centralized dashboard with just a click of a button. Additionally, your technicians can make schedule changes as needed.

Using field service automation technology, field service technicians can also instantly receive notifications to execute the correct task at the correct time. It is made possible by connecting any smartphone, tablet for service technicians, and other mobile devices to your organization’s field service automation solution.

Customer Satisfaction

The greatest impact of automation in service management is on customer satisfaction and business performance. Automation enables businesses to provide a more timely, efficient, and high-quality customer experience

It’s a powerful combination: providing services that meet the needs of the consumer while also delivering them on time. Service Management automation achieves this goal by connecting the back and front offices for a streamlined procedure.

Importance of Field Service Automation

Paper-based methods are inefficient and costly. Owners of service businesses report that each time a single piece of paper is submitted for processing by field service operatives, their enterprises incur a $10 expense. Modern paperless business software is replacing the frequent manual entries needed by paper-based systems with real-time, automated data exchanges, saving time and money. Modern project management software also enables mobile field service workers to view documents from any device or location, reducing errors while delivering data from the field to numerous departments. 

Final Thoughts

It’s no secret that automation is a big element of today’s service management. If you’re going to employ field service management software, you should be prepared to use field service automation technologies as well. They will lower your workload, accelerate service delivery and invoicing, and reduce errors and data entry time. More importantly, FSM software will provide your customers with a better experience because they will know they can obtain service quickly and that their service requests will never be overlooked. As such, field service automation solutions have not only transformed the way businesses operate but have also proved to be the biggest competitive advantage for service businesses today. 
Therefore, if you own a service business and want to ensure growth and sustainability, you should rethink your strategy and embrace automation. To do this, all you need to do is choose the best field service management software for your company and sign up.

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