In the final part of this series looking at the findings of our exclusive research report into field service software we look at what conclusions can be drawn from the research and analyse what can be expected of modern field service software.
Missed the earlier parts of this series? You can read the first part of this series which looked at scheduling and integration and interaction here and the second part looking at management reporting here , and the third part looking at the future of field service software here
When we look at the findings of this research as a whole there are a number of conclusions that can be drawn. When it comes to scheduling solutions there is still a large section of the industry not utilising any scheduling software, which ultimately leads to poorer levels of efficiency in the management of the mobile workforce.
This is of course in turn leads to fewer members of the overall workforce being in customer facing roles that could potentially generate revenue.
Based on the improvements in dispatcher to engineer ratios that scheduling software is proven to deliver, for those companies still operating on a manual basis, investing in some form of scheduling is no longer a nice to have but a necessity if they are to remain competitive.
Just a fifth of companies are able to exploit their field engineers’ trusted adviser status by giving them the tools to sell directly. This represents a major opportunity for companies with the means to invest in such systems to capitalise on their competitor’s hesitancy and gain a commercial advantage. Yet despite this opportunity currently few companies place investing in mobile hardware and software near the top of their priorities, with both categories sitting midway on the priority lists of the majority of organisations.
Perhaps the biggest trend this research has unveiled is that cost has become less of a concern for companies looking to implement new technologies, with issues with legacy systems now being the most common concern.
Many elements that not so long ago were new, premium solutions such as navigation software have now become standard.
This could well be a direct result of the influence of the Cloud. The SaaS business model has now meant that service management software is an affordable option for smaller companies, however, integration has been a early documented issue with some Cloud based solutions.
Our research earlier this year on SaaS and Field Service would also seem to support this hypothesis. To sum up, it appears that many elements are coming together to offer vast improvements to the software available in the field service industry. Also many elements that not so long ago were new, premium solutions such as navigation software have now become standard. Meanwhile we also see exciting technologies such as the Internet of Things and Big Data starting to encroach into service management software.
The future indeed seems bright indeed, but in the here and now there are still things that can be improved upon. Whether it be scheduling software or management reporting tools the results of this research indicate that on the whole there is room for improvement in the software being used today.
However, the research also identifies examples of excellence in the service management software as well. Integration is becoming more and more important, and end-to-end service management has become a reality.
Careful consideration is essential when selecting a software provider and an understanding of your own strategic aims is as important as understanding the options available to you. However, it seems that investing in a service management solution in 2014 is both more affordable and beneficial than ever before.
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