ClickSoftware | 04.03.17
Summary >

We’re facing exciting times in field service management. As the world undergoes digital transformation, customers expect faster, more transparent, and more convenient service. In turn, organizations are using technology such as the Internet of Things (IoT), artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning, and wearables to boost service efficiency. It's important that field service organizations keep up with industry trends so they don't fall behind their competitors.

Thought leaders from ClickSoftware contributed articles and expert commentary about field service management trends, technology, and customer experience. This includes insight from:

Check out the articles published in the first quarter (Q1) of the year:

Field Service Management Trends

What Impact Will Technology have on the Aging Workforce? (Information Age)

Field service organizations are struggling with a skills shortage and aging workforce (especially in physically demanding industries such as utilities and manufacturing). They face challenges including knowledge loss and decrease in productivity. In this article, Alec Berry introduces five technologies that can reduce the strain of an aging workforce.

Up To Speed (Transportation & Logistics International)

In recent years, many commercial fleets have embraced mobile workforce management (MWFM) solutions. This has allowed greater visibility of workforce location, and has increased responsiveness to service calls. In this article, Steve Smith discusses how fleets across industries can effectively manage their resources and personnel.

Software Update: Distribution Software Companies Give Us the Rundown on Their Offerings (Industrial Supply)

In this article, leaders from five software distribution companies share their product offerings. Steve Smith discusses the importance of software agility in businesses, especially as customers today expect individualized experiences. He also talks about the importance of using smart technology throughout the process to keep up with customer expectations

The Future of Energy: 10 Predictions From Industry Insiders (Future of Everything)

The energy industry has been a hot topic in recent years, and has stirred up some debate. In this article, 10 experts, including Tom Heiser, address the question: "What will happen in the energy industry in 2017?" Heiser comments that energy companies are facing a challenge to their traditional business models, and explains why they should embrace the cloud.

Avoiding Plant Disasters With Field Service Management Solutions(Industrial Maintenance & Plant Operation Magazine)

When it comes to a plant disaster, field service management solutions can be the difference between emerging unscathed and millions of dollars of loss. In this article, Steve Smith explains why today's manufacturers should invest in field service technology.

Technology

Virtual And Augmented Reality ‘Check' - The Intersection Of Field Service And Innovation (Field Technologies Online)

To keep pace with today's competitive market, it's important that companies' experiment with new technology. Over the last year there has been $1.7 billion invested in virtual and augmented reality (VR and AR). But how will companies decide which technology will be the best for their needs? Alec Berry explains ways AR and VR can improve standard operating procedures for organizations.

3 Benefits of Workplace Wearables (KNect365)

Wearables have been slow to catch on among consumers, but businesses are starting to adopt them in a workplace context. But how exactly can wearables impact the lives of engineers and their customers? And what does the long-term future hold for wearables in engineering? Alec Berry explores three benefits that wearables can bring to the engineering industry in 2017.

Analytics and Machine Learning: Catalysts of Change in Marketing Arena (Marketing Tech Outlook)

In the past companies relied on IT to make technology purchasing decisions. But that responsibility has shifted towards marketers. In this article, Claudine Bianchi explains why she thinks predictive analytics (driven by AI and machine learning) are going to change the way we do just about everything, including marketing.

Will in-car AI systems like Amazon's Alexa revolutionize motoring? (Internet of Business)

Recently, car manufacturers such as Hyundai, Ford, and Volkswagen have announced plans to integrate Amazon's AI, Alexa, into new car models. With Alexa as a virtual assistant, drivers can control their connected home directly from their car, or ask how much fuel is left in the tank. This article includes commentary from Paul Whitelam, who shares how AI-driven virtual assistants can help field service organizations.

Customer Experience

How will autonomous vehicles drive customer experience? (IoTNow & IoT Global Network

Due to the existence of "Uberized" service, customer expectations are on the rise. Customers demand better communication, and faster, more convenient service. Smart and autonomous vehicles offer new opportunities for organizations to have a competitive advantage. Paul Whitelam explains how self-driving vehicles can help improve customer experience in field service.

Customer service and experience expert Shep Hyken elaborates on Whitelam's insight about self-driving vehicles in Forbes. He shares four ways autonomous vehicles will impact field service and customer experience, based on Whitelam's insight. 

Mobilizing manufacturing industry field services for better customer outcomes (Real Business UK)

Global manufacturing used to focus on creating products for sale. But as customer expectations have risen, the manufacturing industry has shifted towards a service-centric business model. With this shift to service comes a growing demand for excellent customer experiences. Alec Berry explores how optimizing mobile-led technology can help manufacturing organizations set themselves apart from the competition. 

The Future of Service Delivery: How IoT and AI Optimize the Customer Experience (IoT Journal)

Customer service has never been as crucial for businesses as it is today. Yet field service suppliers are still struggling with it. Paul Whitelam explains how IoT and AI can help service organizations optimize customer experience.

This concludes our roundup for Q1. But make sure to check back in Q2 for more articles from our experts.  In the meantime, for more news, trends, updates, and advice, head to the ClickSoftware blog.