In a world where customer expectations have increased drastically due to the technological advancements and efficiency, Field Service Management (FSM) is in high demand.
The global FSM is expected to reach $5.39 billion by 2023 and North America will hold the largest market share because it has been one of the earliest adopters of mobile and cloud technologies. However, the Asia-Pacific region will also witness stronger growth due to the rise in demand for enhanced productivity in the end-user industry verticals. Know the top 9 field service trends for 2020 & beyond.
Field Service Automation — Transition from On-Premise to the Cloud
Enterprises initially opted for an on-premise deployment, due to the high volume of data. However, as they grew, the scalability became expensive and inefficient in the digital age.
This accelerated Cloud adoption for FSM. It undoubtedly helps businesses manage information in a secure, efficient, and consolidated manner, while providing on-the-go remote access to field personnel. FSM cloud deployment provides the highest level of data security and dependability. With its easy flexible architecture, it is more effective when catering to the demands of today and tomorrow.
Oracle Service Cloud & Field Service Cloud — An Intro
Oracle Service Cloud provides multiple options to present and display all your interactions with the customer under a single roof, so that the customer service team has easy access to all the information needed. Know more on the evolution of Oracle Service Cloud.
Oracle Field Service Cloud (OFSC) is a field service and a customer communications solution that collects data from the field in real time, predicts future events, reduces organizational costs and increases efficiency. It eliminates customer uncertainty, exceeds customer expectations, and ensures timely job completion.
The following are some of the key features of OFSC
1.OFSC Routing — leverages a sophisticated algorithm to learn about the resources/workers and their activities. When a resource is in the field, the application sends the GPS coordinates of the resource to the routing engine, to determine the location of the resource.
SoftClouds & Our Innovations with CPQ Cloud & JET UI
• Time of arrival – Uses core technology to predict time of arrival at the client location based on current location of field technician, traffic to reach the location.
• Skill based Routing — Based on the nature of the work that needs to be done, OFS will know how to dispatch the best technician for the service based on the technician’s expertise and background.
• Automatic Intelligent Routing — automatically routes the technician based on type of service and availability of the right tools with the right technician.
• Routing with Live Maps and Directions — integrated maps that will provide the driving directions to the destination location.
2.OFSC Mobility — Mobility Service enables field service technicians to manage and control the work of several resources at once, using a mobile device. It also supports BYOD strategy and offline capability, so mobile employees can continue to work even in areas with poor reception.
The following are some of the features available for Mobility:
• Personalized Experience – With the normal Oracle CPQ, integration with google maps was a tough task as the integration UI/UX experience would not be well optimized. SoftClouds designed its own dynamic map using the data center coordinates from the customer, that lead to easier picks and navigation. With JET, we also designed an intuitive/futuristic interface, now the customer could easily locate the data center and its facilities, before making a purchase decision.
• Mobile Accessibility – Sync to any personal mobile device, thus reducing cost for field equipment and supports third-party workers.
• Customizable UI – Easily design your personalized and innovative user interface.
• Every tool in one solution – Easily view work orders, driving directions, inventory status, availability, collaboration tools, and other important information.
3.OFSC Collaboration — gives the workforce context-aware tools to share knowledge, equipment, location, work, and parts in the field. If a field technician needs specific equipment, a specialized tool, or the knowledge of an experienced colleague they can communicate within the platform.
The following are some features available for Collaboration:
• Video Call & Peer Chat – Chat or video call a colleague in order to get more information or ask a question.
• Connected Field Force – Improve response times and system efficiency by always having open communication with Management, Dispatch, and the Field Workers.
• Virtual Help-desk – If an unknown problem arises, try looking it up in the virtual help-desk, where knowledge of the entire field force is kept.
• Message Broadcast – Send important reminders, safety warnings, traffic information, and more from whatever device, wherever you are.
4.OFSC Forecasting — analyzes historical trends to help you know when the field will need to be adjusted to accommodate for changes in the volume of work and job types. For example, peak seasons or seasonal campaign support.
The following are some features available for Forecasting:
• Predict Field Needs – Create a better understanding of staffing needs due to historical analysis.
• Monitor Performance and Progress – Create long-term plans or schedules and track the performance of those goals instantly.
• Plan workloads efficiently – Reduce costs and manage Field Workers time effectively with accurate predictions of estimated work time.
• Universal Scheduling – Flexible booking models give you the freedom to design a specific model based on your business, supporting direct, quota, time-slot-based, and availability- based booking.
5.OFSC Smart Location — uses predictive technology to display expected job locations and routes, and then leverages real-time data collection through mobile apps to show actual locations and check-in information.
The following are some features of Smart Location:
• Field Service Monitoring – Get a complete view of where the Field Workers are located through Geo-location capabilities.
• Third-Party Field Workers – Contract seasonal or third-party workers through their mobile devices inexpensively.
• Interactive Resource Trace – Check which routes the field worker is taking to the job, compare different routes, and also receive alerts for non-compliant travel.
• Where is My Technician? – Intuitive feature that allows the customer to locate the Field Worker, this ensures peace of mind for both customer and Field Force.
Other Players in the Industry
Here are other top field service vendors who are providing excellent features to dispatch workers based on the type of work, their availability, and the physical locations of customers. This also includes dynamic delivery dashboards and analytics for managers to track ongoing field activities and performance of field workers.
Microsoft Dynamics 365 Field Service & Salesforce are a few competitors.
Why Oracle Field Service Cloud
Oracle Field Service Cloud transforms the customer experience designed with time-based, self-learning, and predictive technology. This configurable solution automatically schedules and optimizes work, based on your unique requirements and maintains a real-time view of the field. Using Oracle’s proven AI and ML, the system can adapt on the fly. Oracle Field Service also empowers the mobile workforce and keeps your customers informed throughout the entire service life cycle.
Oracle Field Service Use Case:
Here is a use case that will show you how OFSC works in the real world.
A municipal employee receives an alert on the municipal services monitoring application indicating that there is a natural gas leak near a busy downtown intersection. A work order is created, and a service team is dispatched. This order is sent to the OFS application creating a matching activity so that the progress can be monitored.
When the activity is completed notice is sent to the application that gets forwarded to the municipal services monitoring application which identifies the work order as resolved and closed.
Another use-case where OFSC fully supports every combination of Predictive Travel, Real-Time Traffic updates, and Street-Level Routing options. Watch it here.
Field Service — Innovative Use Cases of the Future
With the way the world is progressing digitally year after year, we believe there will be great field service innovations. Here are a few of our predictions for the future of FSM.
By 2025, there will be 20 million driver-less cars on the roads which means technicians can multitask. This feature will allow technicians to read up on customer history, service part inventory, and equipment data before they arrive. Other possibilities — if a vehicle is not stocked with a needed service part, it could self-drive to a warehouse and retrieve it, all while the technician is working on other aspects of the repair.
If technicians diagnose and fix problems faster without bringing in additional experts, both the cost savings and improved customer experiences would be monumental. The hands-free nature of smart glasses allows technicians to complete tasks without having to start and stop to read or view instructions. Video collaboration with remote experts could also add to efficiency.
Soft Skills will be critical for success in the field and in sales:
Companies will have to invest in new management and training for a new generation of field service employees, whose skill sets lend themselves to the demands of an increasingly customer-centric business environment.
Consumers seek friction-less experiences that mesh perfectly with their lifestyles. More than 60% of customers are put-off by long wait times between field service appointment booking and the actual service. Today’s customers seek speedy resolutions and it is the key differentiator between firms.
Merely offering visibility into the technician’s calendar at any point in time is not enough. It is the personalized service with the touch of the latest technology that makes the difference. There are many vendors who do this but not everything is connected. Their technology solutions are available by bits and pieces — a combinational platform that does maps, communication, user experience, mobility, inventory control, expertise/experience management, and all of it, that is connected is needed.
In our view — Oracle Field Service is the only platform that is futuristic and can handle the needs of the customers with a much better CX today. The solution architects at SoftClouds, with their innovation, services, and implementation experience, are best positioned to provide you with a solution that will help you succeed.
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This blog was written by Mahesh Jeyakumar, Practice Director, CX Service at SoftClouds. Mahesh has extensive experience with CRM/CX Enterprise & Cloud Applications. He has a deep understanding of CRM/CX Platforms and has delivered multiple CX implementations globally for various industry verticals. Mahesh is very focused on quality customer relationships with a goal to transform complex problems to simple by creative thinking. High specialization in CX Service & Solutions.
SoftClouds is a recognized leader in CRM/CX transformation with experience in numerous Service Cloud Implementations with pre-configured best practice business processes for multiple verticals/domains.