From The Editor | November 20, 2013

Are You Getting What You Should From Your Field Service Software?

Sarah Nicastro

By Sarah Nicastro, publisher/editor in chief, Field Technologies
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I was reading over Gartner’s latest Magic Quadrant for Field Service Management report, which was released in October, and it got me thinking. At the beginning of the report, there are five objectives listed that Gartner says a field service application should have the “scope to achieve.” Reading through those objectives made me wonder — are companies that have solutions deployed fully leveraging these capabilities? In fact, I know from conversations I’ve had that many aren’t. And, what about companies that may not yet have a field service software solution in place — are they fully aware of what they need to be looking for? So, for those of you who may not have seen Gartner’s report, here the five objectives it lists that a field service application should be able to achieve:

  • “Receive requests for a field service technician from the Internet, by telephone, by manual entry, or through remote monitoring”
  • “Assign a service technician with long, midrange, weekly, and intraday optimization of his or her work orders, factoring in constraints (for example, asset, skills, and so on) and improved service-level-agreement compliance”
  • “Make the technician completely mobile to perform end-to-end service tasks, including the ability to look up inventory status in real time or cached on a wireless device”
  • “Integrate with GPS and geographic information systems (GIS) capabilities”
  • “Provide field service functionality that supports a continuum of field service models, from reactive to preventative”

Don’t Settle For Your Field Service Status Quo
Now, maybe based on your company’s size or situation, it isn’t feasible for you to deploy a solution that meets all of the criteria listed above. But, as we move into the new year, I think it’s important for companies that are already leveraging technologies to look at what more you can do with them — all too often, you deploy a solution to solve a specific problem and then just forget about it. But the reality is, many of the solutions available today can do so much more than what you’re currently using them for — and by looking for ways to expand your use, you can find increased efficiencies, cut costs, and even increase revenue. And for those of you looking at 2014 as an opportunity to deploy a solution, this list can serve as a good checklist as you’re evaluating your options. To obtain a copy of the Magic Quadrant for Field Service Management report or look through some of Gartner’s other research, visit www.gartner.com.