By Samir Gulati, ServicePower
In the face of growing customer service demands, organizations like manufacturers, insurers, home warranty, and repair businesses can no longer afford to overlook an all-in-one service management solution to improve customer experience and increase efficiency in the field. But once a software solution is implemented, the focus quickly shifts to achieving the highest return possible in the shortest amount of time. ROI is an important performance measurement for field service providers, and several drivers can be tracked to ensure it.
Optimized Scheduling And Results
Scheduling optimization has a huge impact on field service productivity and delivers many of the results that a company should look for when measuring ROI, including dispatcher efficiency, technician utilization, and improved service-level agreement (SLA) achievement rates.
Service schedules are complex and maximizing their productivity requires careful consideration of several factors, including route logistics and product information, in addition to a technician’s schedule. Artificial intelligence (AI) allows dispatchers to save valuable time by automating manual tasks and mitigating the risk of costly errors or the negative impact of last-minute schedule changes and emergencies. AI also ensures that the schedule is airtight, maximizing technician utilization without overburdening them. These carefully constructed schedules mean more jobs can be completed in the same amount of time with fewer technicians and with reduced travel time.
ServicePower’s schedule optimization customers report vast improvements including a 50 percent reduction in service appointment windows, a 45 percent increase in service calls completed per day, and a 15 percent reduction in technician travel times. In the end, these vast improvements equate to $1 million in year-over-year savings.
Improved Customer Satisfaction
Loyal customers can be the key to a company’s longevity as they are five times as likely to repurchase, seven times as likely to try a new offering and four times as likely to refer the service. How companies leverage technology to engage customers and measure their satisfaction can be considered a useful measurement to track ROI.
Surveys are a common tool to get direct feedback from a customer and are useful for prescribing specific metrics and goals. But surveys have their downside too. They are optional and customers aren’t necessarily eager to seek out and complete them. Automated distribution can improve the rate of completion and ensure that the resulting answers are an accurate reflection of the service experience.
Field service platforms should offer fully-brandable customer portals that empower consumers to access information about their services and deploy surveys automatically. Customers will use this portal throughout their experience to explore warranty coverage, receive real-time notifications, and initiate two-way communications with their technician. Customer satisfaction surveys distributed through the same portal can lead to a 30 percent improvement in their customer satisfaction rates.
Enhanced Employee Satisfaction
When customer outcomes are improved, employees feel a sense of accomplishment. But the global workforce is changing, and companies are looking beyond traditional employer-employee models. Analysts at advisory firm Gartner predict that by this year more than 40 percent of field-service work will be performed by third-party technicians, not full-time employees. As this becomes the new normal for manufacturers, extended warranty underwriters and others who rely on field services, keeping this rapidly growing workforce engaged and invested in customer outcomes will become mission critical over the next decade and beyond.
Employees are happier when they are entrusted with real-time access to valuable information and the flexibility to make schedule adjustments within adherence. To drive ownership, field service solutions should enable technicians to adjust their schedules within SLA adherence based on domain knowledge, availability of parts, and proximity to jobs, in addition to performing in-field triage. This increases collaboration and improves first-time fix rates. Additionally, by monitoring how technicians are using the software and how much they are using it, an organization can determine if investing in the tool is paying off for those that need it the most.
Field Service Management That Pays For Itself
In many cases, field service ends up being the main touchpoint between you and your customers, meaning your brand and reputation relies heavily on this aspect of operations. Achieving the maximum ROI on your field service management software not only assures your money is well spent, but that these important processes are being well-managed to drive success in other parts of your business.
ServicePower is proud to be named a Visionary by Gartner in its July 2020 Magic Quadrant for Field Service Management. ServicePower has been recognized as a Visionary in this report for the fourth time and received the highest customer score for rapid ROI. To access a complimentary copy of the report, please click here.
About The Author
Appointed Chief Marketing and Product Officer at ServicePower in 2017, Samir is responsible for all aspects of Marketing and Product Management, including market strategy, product roadmaps, demand generation, product marketing, and corporate marketing. Samir brings over 25 years of experience in global product and marketing leadership roles in technology companies.