Avoiding Mobile Resource Management Pitfalls and Driving Employee Engagement with Gamification

Sep 4 • Features, Fleet Technology • 831 Views • No Comments on Avoiding Mobile Resource Management Pitfalls and Driving Employee Engagement with Gamification

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Our series of excerpts from the exceptional industry guide ‘Mobile Resource Management for Dummies’, which has been commissioned by Verizon Connect has so far explored Understanding Digital Transformation in a Connected, Mobile World  also Thinking Outside the Silo and Harnessing the Power of Telematics, and Realising the Value of Mobile Resource Management

Now in this latest excerpt, we turn our attention to how field service organisations can avoid Mobile Resource Management pitfalls whilst they drive greater employee engagement.

fieldservicenews.com subscribers have already been given access to this excellent resource but don’t worry if your a field service professional you can still access the eBook by applying for a complimentary industry subscription on the link below and we will send you access to the resource as thanks for your application.

Apply for a complimentary industry subscription to fieldservicenews.com now!

Note: Please do take the time to our T&Cs (available in plain English at fieldservicenews.com/subscribe) and note that this content is sponsored by Verizon Connect)

As with any new project or initiative, there are some common pitfalls to avoid when deploying a Mobile Resource Management (MRM) solution. In this excerpt, we shall look at some of these pitfalls and how to address them, as well as how to engage employees in every department throughout your organisation using the concept of gamification to coach and improve worker performance and drive a more satisfied, efficient and safe organisation.

You Can’t ‘Set It and Forget It’

MRM is a business strategy supported by processes and technology and used by teams throughout the organisation.

Although technology is a vital component, many organisations mistakenly focus purely on the technology and neglect to consider how supporting processes will map to the MRM solution, and fail to define or implement a strategy to gain user adoption.

The goodwill created through co-consultation will quickly evaporate if people don’t understand how to use the software and how it benefits the company, their team members, and themselves.

Although various teams throughout your organisation may have been consulted during the MRM planning process, don’t expect them to automatically embrace the new system or instinctively know how to use it effectively. The goodwill created through co-consultation will quickly evaporate if people don’t understand how to use the software and how it benefits the company, their team members, and themselves.

The level of personalisation will depend on the workflows and the capabilities of the solution being implemented. User training always needs to be built into any MRM project plan.

As well as covering tuition on software functionality and its benefits, group training is a perfect forum to formulate processes and ensure buy-in collectively from all teams. Tailored training programmes involving the system users or those with a vested interest in delivery – your MRM ‘advocates’ or ‘champions’ – need to be developed.

In this way, the system will be seen as a universal corporate tool and not just one department ‘selling’ it.

A common pitfall (discussed in our article in this series on ‘Thinking Outside the Silo‘) is trying to cobble together your own MRM system by integrating siloed best-of-breed solutions in-house. The ever-changing applications make constant connectivity a difficult, moving target that’s costly to set up and that requires a long-term and expensive commitment, relying on a small team/person with highly specialised knowledge – this can be a very high-risk proposition.

Don’t Just Throw in the Kitchen Sink

As the saying goes: garbage in, garbage out.

Spend time cleaning up your data – especially any data that includes addresses. Have you maintained a consistent style or format for data entry? Doing some data validation to determine whether your data is in the proper format goes a long way towards helping to make your data more usable.

One of the fundamental deployment errors in any new system is simply ‘forklifting’ your data from the old system to the new one. Before you begin the process, separate, segment and streamline your data. Work out which segments are relatively clean and which will need additional cleansing. Think clearly about what you want to put in and what will actually be relevant day to day. What data is going to get users to actually want to use the system? Remove out-of-date activities, as well as organisations and contacts that haven’t been touched recently. Relevancy is a guaranteed way to overcome user resistance.

Don’t just focus on addresses – think about time windows, skill sets, delivery days/dates and other common data.

These will all impact the effectiveness of your MRM solution if they’re not accurate and up-to-date. Have a clear, consolidated, centralised database of all your fleet/asset information to avoid delays and frustration, especially at remote locations.

Taking the necessary steps to fix any issues or errors in advance will significantly improve the MRM data conversion and implementation process.

Establish Your Mission

While your drivers, technicians or crews may be a subset of a larger business, there’s no reason why that subset shouldn’t have its own mission that aligns and supports the overall corporate mission.

While your drivers, technicians or crews may be a subset of a larger business, there’s no reason why that subset shouldn’t have its own mission that aligns and supports the overall corporate mission.

Once the mission is established, it’s time to break it down to individual objectives that support the mission. For example, the mission may be to operate the safest fleet in your region, so the objectives may include reducing speeding incidents, Hours of Service (HOS) violations or vehicle idle time.

Create measurable key performance indicators (KPIs) from the established objectives and keep them as specific as possible. No matter what your objectives are – increasing productivity, decreasing fuel costs, improving the safety of your crews or increasing asset utilisation – the secret to achieving them is keeping them Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and Time-bound (SMART). You then need to connect your entire organisation to the established goals.

Align Your Objectives

Review your objectives to ensure that they align with business operations. For example, if your company puts working as fast as possible first and safety second, then setting an objective to reduce speeding won’t align. Get your company influencers (normally managers or supervisors) involved to review and align to the objectives.

Your managers need to be on board with the new objectives because they play an important role in influencing others, and ultimately help to achieve a successful outcome. After reviewing and refining your objectives, and aligning them with your organisation, you’re ready for deployment.

Plan Your Rollout Across the Organisation

If you’re rolling out at multiple locations, draw up a coordinated plan.

Ensure that all parties are on the same page and engaged across the entire organisation – not just in the main office, but at all remote sites. Everyone needs to be aware of the deployment plan and the local champion/team must have everything prepared for deployment at their site on the agreed day/time.

Clear and concise internal communications are critical to ensure a smooth rollout.

Scope the deployment properly first: don’t move the goal posts during implementation. This is very difficult to do, as local variance and conditions means that tweaks are needed but they can cause delay.

What Is Gamification

Gamification is the use of game mechanics in a typically non-game-oriented context.

Gamification is used by software companies to build business applications that increase engagement and participation while accelerating learning. It leverages the human instinct to compete with ourselves or others, with the objective of encouraging teams to achieve company-wide goals.

For example, you can deliver greater safety and compliance by giving near real-time data to drivers so that they can track – and eventually improve – their own performance, or improve productivity by empowering field workers to track near real-time performance metrics when completing work orders.

For gamification to be most effective it needs to be ‘refereed’. This means monitoring results, providing incentives and celebrating wins

For gamification to be most effective it needs to be ‘refereed’. This means monitoring results, providing incentives and celebrating wins. It can’t just be a new fad or flavour of the month initiative. Instead, it must become part of the fabric and culture of the business otherwise results will slip and workers will return to their old habits.

To monitor the results, you need a scoreboard to help reinforce the KPIs so that your employees know what they’re playing for.

The system takes the predetermined metrics and generates a score, then lets the employee see how they perform against their peers. It’s an opportunity to improve behaviours and perform with pride because they see metrics that show a direct correlation to how they’re helping to make their operation successful.

Managers can compare employee scorecards and the types and frequencies of training content being accessed to different metrics such as the rate of accidents, lost-time injuries and productivity, and draw direct correlations between what moves the needle and what doesn’t.

Done right, gamification can be more than just a passing fad.

The data derived can be a powerful force for change in your organisation – you’ll see more than better business results: you’ll have employees who feel more engaged and appreciated, recognised for good performance on the job and motivated to do their best.

Want to know more? fieldservicenews.com subscribers have already been given access to this excellent resource but don’t worry if your a field service professional you can still access the eBook by applying for a complimentary industry subscription on the link below and we will send you access to the resource as thanks for your application.

Apply for a complimentary industry subscription to fieldservicenews.com now!

Note: Please do take the time to our T&Cs (available in plain English at fieldservicenews.com/subscribe) and note that this content is sponsored by Verizon Connect)

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