Can technology give companies using third-party field service a live view? 43% say “Yes“
You took the plunge just over a month ago. Demand for your firm’s services had already been exceeding installation and maintenance capacity for a while. Hobbling along with makeshift solutions was no longer cutting it. Field workers were chronically behind schedule. Customers were irate. Days and weeks could pass when you couldn’t even fit them in.
“The ability to share information in real time with third-party technicians and the provider of those technicians is necessary to ensure that work is being done efficiently and customers are happy.”
Still, choosing to take on a third-party service provider was a hard call. Now you have to deal with it. Can you trust them to maintain your high standards and your hard earned reputation? To remain competitive, you’re going to have to. Because to get everything done that needs to be done, it’s either that or the burden of increasing the payroll. But still, how can you know what’s really happening out there in the field, the real frontline of your service? In the end, it’s still you that will be held accountable. We get it – we know what you’re thinking …
You’re not the first one to fret about working with Third Party vendors and you won’t be the last. Real concerns were discussed by K. Royal in her series Third-Party Vendor Management Means Managing Your Own Risk, where she takes up Pain Points and how to handle them.
Yet, as it turns out, not only have businesses contracting third-party field services succeeded to meet these challenges – they’re the ones actually leading the way! They’ve done it by turning to technology to handle the intricacies of scheduling, supporting and reviewing contract workers. According to a recent report by the Aberdeen Group titled Contractor Management: Strengthen Service with a Third-Party Field Service Team, more than half of the companies that use both contracted and in-house services are investing in mobile technologies to give field forces access to better information in the field. Forty-three percent of companies with only third-party techs are turning to IT for real-time views of field assets.
The difference is even more striking when it comes to adopting tools that enable detailed access to key components – such as technician activity, parts inventories, and service vehicle locations. Similar differences arise when leveraging technology to improve forecasting and planning. For instance, 41 percent of organizations that employ outside contract workers are developing standardized scheduling processes for their field forces.
Okay, you’ve got the figures.
“Communication and visibility are key to any operation, let alone field service which encompasses many touch points,” states Aly Pinder, an Aberdeen senior research analyst specializing in service management. “Visibility of job status, customer satisfaction and of resources must be managed in order to ensure quality does not suffer, regardless of which technician is servicing a customer … The ability to share information in real time with third-party technicians and the provider of those technicians is necessary to ensure that work is being done efficiently and customers are happy.”
So Now what? Stop dwelling on what could go wrong and get yourself some peace of mind.