During the height of the pandemic, every industry, including field service, had to adapt to the changes in customer expectations and technological advancements. This paved the way for innovations to help companies improve their services and adapt to the new standard. Companies that relied on manual processes discovered that they weren’t cutting it anymore, and that they needed to introduce more efficient and effective ways for their technicians to complete tasks, and ultimately meet customer demands. Fueled by technology, field service management is evolving.
In this blog, we will go through four trends we can expect to see in the field service industry in 2022.
Artificial Intelligence (AI)
Field service applications with AI provide managers with the ability to organize technicians’ work order schedules and avoid overlap. With this automation, dispatchers save extra labor, and technicians can view their weekly and monthly schedules, allowing them to plan more efficiently. According to Microsoft, by 2025, as many as 95% of customer interactions will be through channels supported by AI. Field service management software with AI tools can also reduce the stress of last-minute jobs by dispatching technicians closest to the job based on availability, and improve customer experience.
We’ve all heard that prevention is better than cure, and the same applies in the field service industry. Predictive maintenance allows technicians to predict device failures and low inventory levels before they happen and to take the appropriate preventative actions. The value of growth brought about by IoT apps in the field service industry increases by $470 billion annually, according to ReachOut. Using IoT, field technicians and managers can monitor inventory levels, and recurring jobs, allow for earlier intervention, and follow the steps needed to mitigate any potential damage based on historical data. With this, field service companies can anticipate client needs and reduce downtime. This leads to higher customer satisfaction, increased return customers, and improved profitability.
Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR)
AR and VR have opened new doors for field technicians, specifically regarding training and customer service. With AR and VR, technicians can train new technicians to practice and sharpen their skills without worrying about making mistakes or upsetting customers. According to SightCall, using remote support technology has improved on-the-job training and decreased the time to train new technicians by an average of 41%. There is the option of on-demand training where technicians can use remote AR training sessions, making training a flexible experience. AR and VR can also be used for virtual inspections and device audits with customers. This would decrease downtime, enhance customer experience, and improve operations.
The pandemic led to the increase in demand for greater transparency on work orders with customers. Customers want to remain well-informed on things such as technicians’ appointment calendars and tracking their technicians en route. They can also get answers to simple questions using 24/7 online support, FAQs, and other resources without engaging with a technician. With self-service portals, customers can resolve issues on their own, leading to reduced downtime and costs, and increased customer satisfaction.
Between technology advancements and pandemic necessities, field service management technologies are going through a rapid transformation, and the possibilities are limitless. Tools such as AI, cloud-based apps, self-service, and more are leading this evolution. To perform better, technicians require tools that make their jobs easier and encourage communication between colleagues and customers.
Looking for a field service management tool that will continue to innovate? ServiceEcho delivers a platform to help you with your digital transformation and gain a competitive edge in an evolving industry. Book a demo below to learn more.