From The Editor | February 27, 2018

Investing In Your Field Service Success

Sarah Nicastro

By Sarah Nicastro, publisher/editor in chief, Field Technologies
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Investing In Field Service

In today’s competitive field service landscape, complacency is the kiss of death. Continual forward motion is crucial, in terms of innovation, skill building, and process optimization. From both a company and personal perspective, it’s important to determine appropriate ways to continually invest in field service success. “Maintaining the status quo” is no longer an option.

Luckily, according to a recent study conducted by Service Strategies of more than 100 service executives, the majority (80 percent) of companies have a positive economic outlook on their businesses. In fact, 18 percent project a significantly improved economic outlook over the next 12 months and 62 percent project an improving economic outlook over the next 12 months. Experiencing a positive trend in economic outlook helps investment seem more palatable, although a flat or negative trend is not reason in and of itself to stop investing in your business.

The service executives that participated in Service Strategies’ study indicated that the top three areas of investment for the coming year are:

  1. Staff training – 71 percent
  2. Service technology – 68 percent
  3. Service quality improvement (process quality and consistency measures) – 62 percent

These three areas represent significant opportunity for field service organizations. The field technician role has changed drastically in recent years; training is vital in ensuring your workforce is clear on what you’re asking of them and confident in how to get the job done. Investing in the right service technology can make or break your company’s ability to provide the caliber of service your customers expect. And service quality improvement is key, because without optimized processes both training and technology are often for naught.

You should also be thinking about how you’re investing in your own personal success, because your commitment to your own development will bleed over into how your company is progressing. Three areas I’d recommend to start are:

  1. Personal development – are you reading books or listening to podcasts that can help you grow personally and professionally? Resources you use to educate yourself and spark new ideas can make a drastic difference.
  2. Training – is there an area of your job you’re not as strong in as you’d like to be? Seek your own training to bolster skills of your own that may be lacking, or to teach you a brand new talent.
  3. Peer study – if you’re struggling with determining the best ways to innovate or invest, take a look at what one of your peers is doing. Connect with someone new that’s in a similar role as you, and examine what they’re doing personally and professionally to invest in their field service business. It’s amazing what you can learn from a fresh perspective.

The options for how you can invest in your success are limitless —don’t let that stop you from investing. When it comes to strengthening skills and expanding knowledge, there’s virtually no bad decision. That said, it does pay to be strategic in how you’re investing both your time and money to get the highest return. So weigh your options and choose what you feel is most important, but just make sure you keep moving forward.