White Paper: Twenty-First Century Field Service: The impact of the Internet of things (2014)
In the first decade of the twenty-first century, we saw technology change the way that field service operates.
With the US Government’s Global Positioning System being completed in the mid nineties by the early noughties in-car positioning had arrived. By 2014, research by Field Service News showed just 5% of companies see routing software as an urgent purchase simply because the market has reached saturation.
Whilst there were a few early forerunners that combined the functionality of a PDA with a mobile telephone, the mobile phone industry pretty much changed overnight after Steve Jobs famously presented the iPhone on January 9th, 2007. The impact on our industry was to change the way we track, monitor, engage with and manage field-based engineers forever.
Just try and think of how your field engineers could function without either of these technologies today? Sure they could get by, but these tools, along with a number of other breakthroughs such as scheduling software or tablet computers, have simply made field service so much more efficient and field engineers themselves so much more productive.
Thinking of how we worked in the early nineties seems like stepping back into the dark ages.
However, the technologies now emerging and coming to the fore such as Big Data, 3D Printing and the Internet of Things make these early technological advances of the twenty first century pale in comparison and they are set to be completely eclipsed as the evolution of field service moves on up into an even higher gear.
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