Boost Communication to Empower Field Technicians
Author: Brian Grzelak
Profitability suffers when one part of a business isn’t aware of what another part is doing. Without the right tools, miscommunication rears its ugly head. Best practices are missed. Redundant tasks are created. Ultimately, customers end up dissatisfied. How can business avoid these troubles? Communication and collaboration tools as part of an integrated mobile workforce management solutions.
Field service deals with a lot of “what ifs.” For instance, what if one customer requires a special part that a service technician doesn’t have in his truck? What if a new technician runs into a problem and needs to contact another technician for assistance? These factors represent only some of the elements that combine to create the five-hour plus appointment times that frustrate customers.
Having an integrated mobile workforce management solution gives customer service representatives access to mobile workers’ schedules, so not every call needs to be transferred to a dispatcher for scheduling. By incorporating GPS tracking, mapping, and intelligent scheduling into this integrated application suite, even greater visibility and efficiencies can be achieved. Dispatchers become more accurate at assigning the properly qualified technicians for jobs ensuring the right person in the closest vicinity is sent to a job. The end result is that fewer employees need to speak with customers to schedule appointments or resolve problems. Customers are serviced more quickly and helpdesks and dispatch centers can take care of more customers each day.
Context aware mobile workforce management solutions enable customer service reps, dispatchers, and mobile workers to all have access to the same application. This includes customer information, technicians’ skill levels and work schedules, and it’s updated in real time. Customer service reps’ notes and dispatchers’ info are immediately available to the field worker. In turn, customers don’t have to repeat the same details they’ve already told on their initial call.
Through the use of the collaborative knowledge app, field workers can quickly search for and identify troubleshooting advice on difficult assignments. This reduces the time it takes to complete repairs. If a technician discovers he needs a part that’s not in his vehicle, he can access an intelligent inventory app and locate the part he needs from the closest vicinity to his current location.
For more details connecting the front office and the field, read our business paper “Eliminating Front Office and Field Workforce Communication Barriers to Improve the Customer Experience.” In this business paper, we explore three types of business challenges many service companies face and show how improving the communication among your field workers, dispatchers, and customer service representatives with a mobile workforce management solution can make these problems a thing of the past.