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A Fix for First-Time Fix Rates

Sep 28 • Features, Management • 2337 Views • No Comments on A Fix for First-Time Fix Rates

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Improving first-call/visit resolution rates can be challenging and frustrating for field service organisations, because there are so many factors and variables that prevent technicians from completing a repair on the first visit writes Astea’s Debbie Geiger…

Find out more about this subject in Astea’s latest white paper here

The customer may not provide enough information to the call center representative, or that information may not be accurately relayed to the dispatcher or tech; the technician may need assistance with the repair; the parts might not be available, or the tools may not be on-site; the dispatcher may not allot enough time for the repair in the schedule.

There are ways to improve first-call resolution rates, but they require a shift in strategy and an investment in work order, dispatch, and scheduling automation solutions.

We recently held a webinar in conjunction with RTM Consulting. During this webinar we presented some operational and technology strategies for improving first-time fix rates in our webinar “First Call/Visit Resolution: Getting it Fixed the First Time.”

Failing to fix an issue on the first visit can be detrimental to customer satisfaction and retention.

Aberdeen Group found in a survey of service organisations that first-time fix rates were considered a top key performance indicator (KPI) by 38 percent of respondents. That’s because failing to fix an issue on the first visit can be detrimental to customer satisfaction and retention.

Yet, according to The Service Council (TSC), average first-time fix rates are just 74 percent; that means more than a quarter of all calls require multiple visits.

Those additional visits come at considerable cost. Aberdeen found that service calls that aren’t resolved in a single visit require an average of 1.5 additional visits to complete. Even for small organisations, that can result in thousands of dollars in additional costs per day. And that doesn’t even include the cost of lost business from those disappointed customers, who are more likely to look elsewhere for their service needs.

The key to addressing the problem is to take a more disciplined, holistic approach

The problem, according to Randy Mysliviec, president and CEO of RTM Consulting, is that many service organisations take a “Whac-A-Mole” approach to solving the problem, addressing the causes of first-time fix failures in a disorganised fashion.

The key to addressing the problem is to take a more disciplined, holistic approach, and RTM has outlined three critical planning components for addressing first-time fix rates:

Prevention:

Improved training of call centre staff and technicians, increase use of remote diagnostics and Internet of Things (IoT) technology, and improved preventive or predictive maintenance approaches can reduce the number of equipment failures that need fixed in the first place.

Triage:

Carefully outline incident handling, support tiers, parts management, and other processes that affect the likelihood of having the right technician and the right part at the customer site.

Continuous Improvement:

Institute knowledge management, variability analysis, root cause analysis, and process improvement strategies so you measure, track, and log information that will help make your service organization a little smarter after every incident.

Clearly outline what you want your first-call resolution processes to look like, and implement the technology needed to manage and support delivery of those services. Create a gap analysis so you know how you are performing now, and how you’d like to be performing in the future.

Through collaboration and improved data visibility, your team can find better solutions for each customer problem, and do so more efficiently and likely at a lower cost.

To succeed, you must have a collaborative field service management infrastructure in place that provides a seamless flow of information from the call centre to the dispatcher and out to the technician.

Through collaboration and improved data visibility, your team can find better solutions for each customer problem, and do so more efficiently and likely at a lower cost.

Remote monitoring of assets helps capture service diagnostic information that can be provided to field technicians in advance. Giving call centre staff more guidance through question trees and full access to customer history data can help resolve more calls over the phone (without costly truck rolls), and provide better information to technicians when they do have to go on-site.

Find out more about this subject in Astea’s latest white paper here

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