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Managing a mobile workforce, especially if spread across a large geographic area, is a major challenge. Real-time visibility, therefore, plays an indispensable role in field service management.
Yet, by simply tracking employees or other resources, do we know what is really happening in the field, and how?
Producing bar charts that show percentages of completed vs. total work orders does not reflect the complexity of field tasks. Service excellence must include the ability to break down and detail each employee’s activities along the day with high precision, and to capture and analyze granular data from the field. Assembling this vast accumulation of data forms a clear picture of employee performance, enabling managers to make quick, informed decisions, while also increasing productivity and enhancing customer satisfaction.
Fortunately, new technologies available today automatically analyze data collected at point-of-service, and leverage this information in real-time to maximize operational efficiency for customers. Service leaders can be updated about what exactly is happening in the field minute by minute, and not only about how many work orders were completed.
The challenge, however, is gathering this wealth of granular data without lowering employee productivity by requiring workers to report every task, thereby distracting them from their service work. Automatic granular recognition technologies can help in achieving this goal without compromising productivity.
Organizations that implement real-time analytics designed to interpret the vast and complex data streamed from the field, enable service providers to be proactive, rather than simply reactive, by refining the ability to monitor and evaluate workers accurately, thus increasing their performance.
How to interpret the collected data
Collecting all this granular data is not enough. Service excellence is about measuring worker performance and engagement to ensure that work behavior patterns are resolution-oriented. It is, therefore, essential to define the right metrics to identify areas that need improvement, and the best practices to be replicated across the organization. Such metrics may include first-time fix rate, time-to-repair, employee responsiveness, idle time, adherence to regulations, excess travel distance or travel between tasks, reporting discrepancies, punctuality, and SLA compliance. Customer satisfaction regarding products and service reps must also be measured, including reasons for failed resolutions, net promoter score, and closure time.
Measuring all these parameters on an employee, group, regional or entire company level provides organizations with the ability to improve. By utilizing cutting-edge mobile tools that collect performance data, executives are able to make long-term strategic decisions regarding incentive programs linked to performance, assigning employees according to skill level, tailoring training courses, and replicating the work patterns of high performers across the entire organization.