Why cloud is the future of Field services
Industries that rely on field services technicians heavily have had many challenges over the years with efficiency and cost controls. While some companies handle field technicians better than others, it’s still a challenge to make sure that all of the different pieces of information get to where they need to be. One of the recent trends that’s had a massive impact on field services is the emergence of the cloud. How exactly does this technology help field service businesses excel, and how will it continue improving in the future?
Accessing Information in the Field
Imagine a field service technician out in the field with nothing but a tablet or smartphone. They pull up an app and can immediately get all of the information they need about a project. They can see the customer’s contact information, see what they’re supposed to be doing at a project, and pull up project plans. All of this is possible because the information is stored in a field services app remote server.
This is a far cry from what field service businesses previously had to deal with. When field service technicians would go out into the field, they’d have to wait on a work order or job information to be printed off before they could leave. Then if they get out to the project and the information is wrong, it could cause major delays. Now all of the information that they need is available at the touch of a button. It’s right there when they need it and it can even be updated in real time.
Another problem that field service companies previously had to deal with was documenting what happened at a job. The field service technician completed something at a job and they need to document it. Previously, that involved them taking some photos, writing down some notes on a piece of paper and maybe making a drawing or sketch.
Now with the help of field services management software in the cloud, field techs can document what they do in the field and it is uploaded immediately. Once it’s uploaded, it goes to the correct project file and is saved there for future use. Employees in the office can pull up photos of the job site, and see other pieces of information from the field. This helps bring the gap between the office and the field just a little bit closer together. Sharing information in real time such as this ensures that everyone has access to what they need, when it is needed.
One of the pain points for companies that have field technicians is that they never know where they are. They have a hard time tracking the amount of time that they’re working, how long they’re driving and engaging in other activities. With the help of service management software, companies can more easily know what’s happening with their technicians. Many field service management software programs have GPS tracking capabilities that will show you where technicians are in the field at any given moment. This technology also comes in really handy for routing and scheduling purposes. You can estimate how long a technician will be before they arrive at a job. You can see which technicians are in the area when an emergency appointment needs to be scheduled.
This feature also makes it easier to verify how many hours a technician works. Many of these applications have time tracking software that allows employees to clock in and clock out while they’re in the field. It can compare that against time actually on the job site and can compile that information over time. This makes it possible to see which technicians are the most effective by looking at metrics and reports.
Overall, cloud field service software has a great deal of potential for the future of the industry. If your business wants to cut down on wasted time, maximize employee efficiency and improve access to information, field service programs are invaluable. By making an investment in technology now, you can get ahead of the curve and gain a competitive advantage over similar companies in your industry. The implementation might be a bit of a challenge, but the benefits more than outweigh the costs.