According to Stratistics MRC, the field service industry is expected to grow at a 16.5% compound annual growth rate to reach $4.45 billion by 2022. If you wish to get your fair share of the growth, your firm needs to be prepared for the challenges ahead. You need to equip your workers with capabilities which help them succeed, including mobile forms.
Mobile forms deliver a range of capabilities beyond mobile data collection – electronic signatures, workflow automation, and business intelligence integration. When used in the field service industry, these digital forms can provide the following benefits.
Reduce Dependency on Paper
Many field service enterprises have been reducing their paper consumption by switching to electronic data management systems. You can further your progress by integrating mobile forms with your backend systems.
Not only does this ensure your competitiveness in the new era of data-heavy business, it delivers benefits such as:
- Speed – Data can be collected faster on mobile devices. It can also be transferred quickly in the form of raw data to databases, or in PDF documents sent to specific employees.
- Improved Management –As mobile forms improve collaboration between field workers and the back office, information will be under control, up to date, and correctly saved. Not only does this make managing the mobile workforce easier, it saves everyone’s time and effort.
- Lower Environmental Cost – Going paperless is a great way of making your firm environmentally friendly. Not only does sustainability appeal to today’s consumers, your firm benefits from saving resources and improving its reputation in the industry as well.
Many of the obstacles which meet field workers are caused by the lack of real-time communication. As they’re inherently detached from the larger organization, remote employees lack access to important resources. This, in turn, affects their ability to meet objectives such as reduced time to service.
With mobile forms, field workers can solve challenges which arise from inefficient communication such as:
- Poor Reporting – Writing reports can be a tedious tasks for everyone involved. Field workers will be burdened with the task of writing long reports by hand, while back office workers will be struggling to comprehend illegible handwriting and trying to ‘digitize’ that data. Mobile forms streamline the reporting process as they ensure efficient data entry, and directly send digital copies to the back office.
- Wasted Time – At times, field service enterprises have to deal with repeat or rescheduled visits because certain information – such as the need for a certain part – wasn’t communicated. Not only does this waste everyone’s time, it also wastes money. Mobile forms can help by communicating crucial information in semi-real time. Checklists prepared on the fly and prompt notifications further ensure efficient time use.
- Mediocre (or Poor) Team Performance – Workers need to be connected to develop a strong, communicative team. Large companies, however, may not have the time to onboard newly-formed teams. Mobile form apps can help bridge the gap between team members by connecting everyone in an organized way. In addition to promptly communicating through forms, workers can access shared knowledge to be on the same page.
Due to the mobile nature of their workforce, field service firms have a tough time managing the schedules and work plans of their employees. As competition grows fiercer, firms are under the pressure to plan ahead and make timely decisions.
Luckily, mobile forms can help resolve the following scheduling challenges to ensure both customer and technician satisfaction.
- Tracking Resources – Mobile forms allow field service providers to keep track of their employees on shifting jobsites. Managers also get to effectively track parts used, vehicles, and equipment used through these forms.
- Optimizing Travel Times – By sharing their locations through forms, employees allow firms to effectively organize requests by location. As a result, travel time, vehicle wear, and fuel expenses can be reduced. Location data can further be passed on to scheduling software to optimize the best route for service crews, ensuring they reach on time.
- Managing Breakdown Service and Planned Downtime – By effectively tracking resources, field service companies can plan reserves in case a breakdown occurs. They may also ensure regular maintenance downtime as they can schedule jobs properly.
- Data Access – Schedules can be pushed back when employees don’t have the information they need to work on a job. However, mobile forms deliver the data they need at their fingertips, allowing them to complete their jobs on time and ensure their availability for the next.
Enhance Field Service Management Efficiency
Field service organizations are more focused than ever on achieving higher productivity and clear value differentiation. Failure to ensure these two will lead to delays, poor resource utilization, and low customer satisfaction levels.
With the help of mobilized forms, firms can improve the following four components to achieve higher operational efficiency.
- Workforce Performance – Ensuring high workforce engagement and motivation is essential for overall productivity. With mobile forms, you can securely connect workers to their managers, ensuring prompt communication. Moreover, checklists and training material can be delivered through mobile form apps to keep employees up to date on the best practices. Enterprises can also establish goals in the form of achievable tasks that get jobs done and keep morale high.
- Cost Optimization – Mobile forms can be used for effective stock control and procurement. Firms can take this a bit further by analyzing the data collected to accurately determine current requirements and forecast future ones. Proper hazard reporting via mobile can also support the remote resolution and preventative initiatives, reducing the number of costly emergencies.
- Workflow Performance – By integrating workflow tools with your mobile forms, your firm, workers, and customers will definitely benefit in more than one way. According to the 2014 report “Reviewing Field Service Strategy” by The Service Council, 38% of field service firms believed they could save at least 30 minutes a day per worker by changing their processes. As a result, enterprises can save around $700,000 every year. You can use that sum to improve your workers’ satisfaction or develop new services which your customers need. At the end of the day, it’s your enterprise that benefits from these changes.
- Customer Satisfaction – In today’s markets, any increase in customer retention levels is bound to increase a company’s value. Therefore, field service firms should continuously focus on their existing customers while attempting to win new ones. Mobile forms help by ensuring better scheduling, excellent communication, and faster resolution times. With every benefit you’ve read in this post, you will definitely stay you in your customers’ good books.
So, Are You Ready for Your Own Field Service Mobile Forms?
Creating mobile forms isn’t that hard. In fact, it requires no coding in our forms designer Transform Studio, allowing business users to easily design as per their needs.
If you wish to test this technology at your enterprise, simply download our 80+ collection of forms in Ready2Use Forms. Within a short time, you’ll notice some of the benefits you just discovered, and be ready to create your own field service forms.