By Tom DeVroy, Senior Product Evangelist, North America, IFS
It's been nearly 30 years since the Magellan Corporation introduced the first hand-held navigation device and nearly 20 years since GPS accuracy degra- dation was stopped by the United States Defense Department, spearheading a significant increase in the use of location coordinates for commercial and personal use. Nearly 15 years ago, field service organizations began to tap into in-vehicle location coordinates to better track their field service resources, improve scheduling and routing, and offer point-to-point navigation. With the greater availability of GPS native to intelligent handheld devices, location coordinates were further embedded into day-to-day field service operations.
Geofences, virtual geographical fences created around a location, can now enable the field organization to trigger business rules or create notifications as and when they are crossed by field service technicians. These fences can be used to generate greater operational efficiencies while promoting techni- cian safety. More importantly, these geofences can also be used by field organizations to strengthen the experience that they deliver to their customers. As more field service leaders begin to evaluate and prioritize the customer experience delivered by their field teams, geofences can serve as a valuable tool to locate new opportunities and maximize revenue.