Prepare for 2017 in Field Service

At the end of 2015, MIT’s Sloan School of Management did some research on organizational priorities. The research covers 11,000 senior executives at 400+ companies, including many service businesses. One of the most astounding facts was that 67 percent — 2 in 3! — of the senior managers could not name one or more of the company’s main priorities. Microsoft has done research, presented in an article called “The Paradox of Workplace Productivity,” that shows similar lack of priority in many different types of companies.

So, the first thing you need to be doing for 2017 is determining what exactly your goals and priorities are. For most service businesses, it looks like this:

Retain existing clients and service-level agreements
Grow new clients through referrals and other means
Keep costs down
Drive revenues up

Those are four basic areas that many service businesses define as goals. The individual items will vary based on what specific type of field service you provide — but regardless of whether you’re an electrician or have an HVAC company, you need to be growing and keeping costs down. Those are universal goals for FSO business.

But it goes beyond that. For example, how much are you thinking about business metrics?

Business metrics are KPIs that actually show how your business is growing (or stalling). They are elements that you track that really help explain your business. An example might be revenue per technician, or invoiced jobs vs. completed jobs.

Now, the specific KPIs you track will be relative to your business model, but some solid field service examples include:

First-time fix rate
Extra quotes or orders by technician
Percentage of billable hours
Number of work requests
Number of overtime hours
Customer retention

If you’re struggling to measure KPI’s, that’s another issue. You may need fsm integration with field service software.

There’s also the issue of connected devices. There should be 80 billion connected devices in the world by 2025, if not sooner. Connected devices will radically change field service because now the devices themselves can send performance data to an FSO. Instead of the client calling you and saying, “This machine is broken,” you’ll already know. The shift will be toward predictive or preventative maintenance, which right now only happens in down-seasons.

In short: Field service is changing rapidly. You need a guide to some 2017 considerations, and that’s what we’ve put together for you. You can download it now. As always, feel free to ask any questions.

Prepare for 2017