DSI Blog


Field Service Challenges for 2018

Posted by on December 13, 2017 8:30 am

Field service leaders are wearing a lot of hats these days. Managing an effective field service business requires more than just technical skills; it requires a wide range of business knowledge. Increasingly, field service organizations (FSOs) are being held accountable for both. Let’s take a look at what challenges field service companies are facing in 2018.

DSI recently partnered with WBR Insights to conduct a comprehensive study of the field service industry in the United States. The 2017 Field Service USA Report is the study of 100 industry leaders to gauge success metrics and preparedness among field service companies. The report is full of valuable information, including an overview of common business challenges and KPIs.

When asked to identify metrics relevant to their field service organizations, respondents selected the following metrics as still important:

  • Customer satisfaction – 88% still find relevant
  • Total cost of service – 78%
  • Employee satisfaction – 62%
  • First time fix rate – 56%
  • Turn-over rates – 55%
  • Overtime paid – 42%
  • Jobs completed per day – 40%
  • On-time rates – 19%

None of these should be surprising. The above KPIs have been typical of the industry for years, and they will continue to be important. But leaders value more than just performance-relevant factors. More and more business-related challenges have become top priorities.

Technology adoption proves to be among the top challenges. Field service companies face technology challenges on two major fronts: first, finding a way to incorporate technology into their regular workflow; and second, keeping up with expectations of customers and a new generation of employees in terms of technology capabilities.

While technology adoption has historically been a major challenge, the KPI most pressing to field service leaders for 2018 is customer satisfaction. Customer expectations are rapidly changing, and if your company isn’t prepared to meet these constantly moving expectations, you could be missing out on important opportunities. Servicing customers doesn’t stop at the service itself anymore.

When asked for specific challenges coming in 2018, one field service leader said, “Keeping both staff and customers happy. It is vital that our staff is happy to ensure efficient service delivery so that eventually customers are happy. But with the changing and expanding needs of customers…we certainly have a challenge.” Finding the most efficient way to give your customers visibility into your business while maintaining positive employee relations may be a tricky feat, but it will benefit your business immensely.

Selecting the right technology partner with specialization in mobile applications and inventory visibility can set you up for success. If you have the ability to maximize daily productivity with intelligent scheduling capabilities and real-time inventory information, you can improve overall cost of service and ultimately efficiency.

The changing workforce within the field service environment affects a huge range of responsibilities as a field service leader. The challenge of maintaining effective technology adaptation while optimizing the customer experience will be a pressing issue for 2018, but with preparation and discussion of how your company can best adapt to this changing landscape, you set yourself up for success.

DSI is here to talk about how our mobile-first Field Service solution can help you drive employee and customer satisfaction. Visit dsiglobal.com to continue the conversation.

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