What is the most important factor in regard to delivering exceptional field service? Is it the technician? How about the technology? Maybe it’s the service part?
All of these factors are integral to resolving service issues. However, recent Aberdeen research has highlighted another aspect of field service execution; the increased interest and importance in asset intelligence and remote service.
Approximately one quarter of top performers (24 percent) in Aberdeen’s State of Service Management: Outlook for 2013 research prioritize remote service and smart services to support the service organization.
Below are the top four reasons why top performers look to remote intelligence to enhance the field service organization:
1. Data at the fingertips of the executive. The service dashboard is both visible and valuable for the service executive. The best-in-class performers in Aberdeen’s Mobile Field Service 2013 research are 57 percent more likely than all others to provide their executives with a dashboard of service performance data.
In order to make the right decisions in a timely manner, leaders must have the right data which provides a clear picture of the service relationship with customers, techs, and assets. Data captured remotely provides a real-time view into the equipment that is on a customer site and can help executives formulate a customer profile (i.e., usage behavior) based on this intelligence.
2. The break-fix mentality no longer works. Customers expect more from the service organization. This should come as no shock, but as a result of increased competition and enhanced customer expectations, the service organization must find new ways to satisfy its customer base.
One way to exceed customer expectations is to avoid product and asset failures in the first place. In Aberdeen’s recent research on remote service, 71 percent of top-performing organizations leverage remote data from assets and equipment to trigger the scheduling of a preventive service visit, as compared to 51 percent of others. The link between information and action is what helps top performing organizations differentiate their service business from peers, and ultimately reach the ultimate goal of satisfying the customer.
3. The number of service calls handled is increasing. The hope that assets and equipment will never fail is pretty remote. Aberdeen’s mobile field service research shows that a top pressure facing organizations is the increasing volume of service requests.
Can companies really do more with the same? It’s challenging, but service organizations can be smarter with their resources and do more with the data that is captured every second. For example, the intelligence gathered from assets can be used to predict future failures (and provide service ahead of time), improve products based on usage trends, or enhance security measures as a result of the identification of vulnerabilities in processes or product.
4. Increased revenue opportunity. The amount of data that is captured in the field or via assets on the customer site is invaluable. Assets provide insight into customer behaviors, condition/performance of the asset, and potential failure trends.
Aberdeen has highlighted how top performers have taken this insight and been able to use it to create new services (i.e., training, consultation) or product enhancements based on the identification of opportunities to fulfill a need.
The ability to become more consultative with customers and tailor services to their needs (both current and future) is integral to stimulating revenue opportunities for the service organization. The primary goal of service is clearly to satisfy the customer, but truly successful service organizations are able to not only improve the customer experience but also bolster top- and bottom-line growth.
Field service, mobile technology, and remote intelligence are topics that continue to move the meter for the service executive and the organization. The importance of these topics to service differentiation, the customer experience, and profitability will continue to keep top on the mind.