How to Leverage the Next Wave of Innovation – Mobility + Enterprise 2.0
As field service companies increasingly rely on data collected through field workers’ mobile devices and fleet vehicles, they’re finding that versatile Enterprise 2.0 solutions are fulfilling an important function. Mobile technicians, supervisors and dispatchers can share important knowledge using freely available collaborative tools while customers can provide critical feedback and access information.
So, just what is Enterprise 2.0? It’s a framework that offers access to multiple business approaches, technologies and experiences. Generally, the platform includes Web 2.0 capabilities (such as Social Media, video, IM, wikis), robust security and integration with mobile and enterprise apps.
When it comes to enabling field service processes, a few of the features that an Enterprise 2.0 portal can offer include:
• Customized Web-accessible infrastructure
• Content/knowledge management
• Community-based portals and common spaces
• Interactive mobile-accessible platform & solutions
• Media/legacy application access, sharing & management
It’s recognized that effective knowledge management shapes strategy and enables greater efficiency. In general, field service organizations collect vast amounts of data. Often that information gets set aside in unused databases and seldom-accessed files.
However, if such data is aggregated and assembled in a useful, easily accessible format, it can spur innovation and stimulate change. For example, consider the amount of Machine-to-Machine (M2M) data compiled in the mining industry.
Enterprise 2.0 tools can aid in tracking (Where exactly are assets located? Are they idle?), monitoring (How are those assets currently being used?) and performing diagnostics (Are assets running efficiently? Do they require maintenance?).
Mobility and customized apps help field service workers become more productive by leveraging the cloud to access a wealth of information, from customer files to routing information and even Social Media. Used in combination with an Enterprise 2.0 platform, technicians can quickly access data, such as inventory, invoicing, job history and location.
Leveraging mobile apps along with Enterprise 2.0 capabilities allows companies to provide a level of collaboration and rich information access that’s unprecedented. Enabling consistent access to a range of data can increase a company’s competitive edge, improve mobile technician capabilities and help company leaders respond more quickly in critical decision-making situations.
That’s because real-time collaboration and quick access to well-organized knowledge is significantly enhanced within an Enterprise 2.0 framework. Moreover, Enterprise 2.0 capabilities can increase service excellence. In general, a positive experience for consumers translates to higher customer loyalty. Companies are finding that well-equipped mobile field service technicians are a critical connection to customers.
According to Aberdeen Group research, organizations with customer satisfaction rates of 90 percent or more see service revenue increases of 6.1 percent and overall revenue growth of 3.7 percent. With Enterprise 2.0 capabilities and mobility in place, companies that track whether service commitments are met, tasks are completed on time, and scheduling is efficient are reaching those benchmarks.
Enterprise 2.0 adoption offers an additional gateway for customers to interact with businesses. As companies use these social collaboration tools within the enterprise to foster interactions and increase the productivity of the employees, they’re also achieving a new level of communication with customers.
Such capabilities not only enable seamless connectivity to customer support. But easier collaborations can reduce the number of times customers must contact support, resulting in cost savings and increased customer satisfaction. These capabilities invite feedback and even participation in product creation and improvement.
Enterprise 2.0 in conjunction with mobility delivers a range of benefits. These include increased opportunities for collaborations, functionality as a base for mobile operations and accessibility to a rich knowledge repository.
While service performance times and outcomes can vary based on an individual technician’s skill and knowledge, Enterprise 2.0 tools can significantly reduce the gap. The goal is to use mobility, collaborative tools and information access to systematically increase productivity and service excellence.