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Solving the 5 Biggest Challenges of Field Service Management

INTRODUCTION

The time has come for field resource management to also reap the benefits from cloud computing or on-demand solutions. In fact, an on-demand field resource management solution can solve the top five challenges you face today—while gaining ROI almost immediately. 

You will:

  • See how automating processes can help you solve your biggest field service delivery challenges.
  • Discover from real-world case studies the cost reductions and revenue increases you can expect.
  • Learn what options you have today to revolutionize your field service organization.

Knowing which products are covered under warranty or the details of service contracts is critical to knowing what services customers are entitled to and which customers should pay for service. Most warranty or SLA information is buried within a proprietary order management system or you need to invent. manual processes to extract this information and put it into a spreadsheet; meaning it’s slow and cumbersome. It’s inevitable that you end up giving away “free” service on equipment that is no longer under warranty or you deliver service to a non-paying customer who might actually not be entitled to it. Product information can include:

  • What – product identification, serial number, lot number, and/or quantity
  • Who – customer, contact information, distributor
  • When – purchase, ship, and install date
  • Where – physical location and address
  • How – warranty coverage or service contract

Managing service operations across multiple legacy systems and spreadsheets is cumbersome and complex. Your technicians in the field must login to VPN to access on-premise, client-server systems and sometimes can’t even do that if there is no network coverage in remote areas. The result is they’re often out of the loop with out-of-date information. Additionally, offering more services to customers gets tougher if it means major IT resources just to add another option for customers. If you’re looking to win and keep customers based on speed and accuracy, then you deal with major systems’ headaches every day.

By ensuring that when customer orders are placed you collect information about the product, warranty, and/or service agreement then you can maintain a complete record of every installed product at every customer site. With an on-demand field service solution, you configure the system to provide proactive notifications when warranty periods expire. The can easily be set up with a click when the order is taken. Using dashboards and/or reports, you can pull up all products that will expire in a given amount of time to actively target those customers and sell them extended coverage. Service contracts can be worth anywhere up to fifteen percent of the original product purchase value—this adds up to a lot of revenue. By retaining retain higher percentages of customers on your service contracts or warranties, you can capture additional service revenue.

Inventory is a huge investment, but necessary in order for you to run your service organization. Individual spare parts can cost hundreds or thousands of dollars each. Regulations may even require that you control individual spare part numbers by unique serial number or lot number. Poor spare parts inventory controls can mean inventory shrinkage or excess inventory buildup, which both drive up your costs. By maintaining an accurate, up-to-date inventory record of every part at every stocking location, you know the exact value of your spare parts inventory. Automatic audit trails track all movements or stock adjustments so you know exactly when inventory value changes.

Getting timely and accurate customer and service information out to partner teams is virtually impossible without an on-demand solution. Cloud computing makes getting complete and detailed information into the hands of your partners as easy as logging into the internet. You can enhance communication and mitigate potential channel conflicts. You can also view partner performance and profitability to get the most out of your partnerships.