I’m sure it isn’t hard to Imagine how your business will be affected if you don’t manage your field service assets properly – operational efficiency will take a severe beating, the cost of serving customers will shoot up, and most importantly, the performance of your company as a whole will be impacted adversely (as we all know, the inability of a company to deliver good services will result in frustrated clientele leading to a sharp decline in its profits).
Fortunately, the 21st century organization can ensure seamless management of its field service assets using cutting-edge, AI-powered software applications. These smart tools enable optimal use of the assets and help the organization serve its customers well.
Today, we’ll see how intelligent field service asset management applications help drive productivity and cut costs in a big way. We’ll then look at how these state-of-the-art software products are used by firms in various sectors. Thereafter, we’ll learn about a few best practices to formulate a robust field service asset management plan. But first, let’s briefly try to understand what field service asset management tools are all about.
What Are Field Service Asset Management Applications?
As its name suggests, a field service asset management tool is a software product that enables an organization to effectively handle its machines, vehicles and various other pieces of equipment used by mobile service teams very efficiently – the software product allows the organization to facilitate timely maintenance and repairs maximizing their performance and uptime. Field service asset management tools go a long way in enabling firms to implement a systematic, effective and proactive approach to manage their mobile service assets.
How Can You Benefit Using Field Service Asset Management Tools?
Field service asset management applications play a key role in enhancing mobile service efficiencies – they allow you to monitor the performance of your equipment, track its wear and tear and draw suitable maintenance plans. Here’re some of the major advantages of using these powerful tools.
Better Visibility of Mobile Assets
Cutting-edge field service asset management tools utilize various novel technologies such as the Internet of Things (IoT), Radio Frequency Identification (RFID), barcoding, satellite-enabled position tracking and so on to facilitate real-time tracking of the location and status of your mobile equipment. You needn’t spend hours searching for the right tools to resolve a customer issue – this’ll go a long way in boosting the productivity of your technicians.
Optimal Maintenance of Equipment
Another key benefit of using field service asset management applications is the ability to plan preventive maintenance of your service equipment effectively. This is possible because the applications come with smart analytics capabilities that help you identify when a problem might arise with the equipment based on its usage and performance data. Armed with this insight, you can develop robust strategies to prevent sudden breakdowns and ensure high asset availability.
Monitor Critical Conditions Effectively
Mobile service technicians often use various kinds of sensitive equipment. The performance of these tools can be affected by changes in temperature, pressure, vibrations and other physical factors. Innovative field service asset management applications leverage intelligent sensors to help you find issues with the tools under different conditions – the sensors relay real-time data about the performance of your field service equipment enabling you to take suitable measures.
Handle Inventories in an Optimal Manner
It’s very important to track the availability of spares and monitor inventory levels in real time to facilitate timely repairs and maintenance of field service equipment. You can use the powerful predictive analytics capabilities of the latest mobile service asset management software to precisely estimate demand for specific spare parts – this’ll allow you to keep their stocks at an optimal level, minimizing inventory holding costs. You can also automate the reordering process right from your asset management tool, ensuring required components are readily available.
Use Real-time Data to Make the Right Decisions
Staying on with analytics, the latest mobile service asset management tools allow you to connect performance data with maintenance histories and Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). This’ll go a long way in enabling you to plan well and make the right decisions to optimize the usage of your field service assets.
Comply with Prescribed Safety Norms Effectively
We all know defective equipment may result in your service technicians getting injured. It’s good idea to use your service asset management tool to automatically schedule inspections at regular intervals and generate reports of maintenance activities as they happen. This’ll help you make sure your equipment is fit for safe use before handing it over to members of your field service team. More about data in a moment.
Increase the Life of Your Equipment
You must use the solid data provided by your field service asset management tool to formulate robust preventive maintenance strategies to extend the life of your equipment. This reduces the need to replace the equipment frequently. The result — significant cost savings and high ROI on the field service equipment.
Collaborate Effectively with Stakeholders
The asset management tools used by your field service organization help you work with various stakeholders effectively. The applications allow you to provide key updates about the availability of the service equipment in real-time, reducing delays in the delivery of service and enhancing coordination.
Your field service management software facilitates communication and collaboration among your entire team and other stakeholders. Centralized real-time updates, shared insights, and collaborative tools enhance coordination and reduce service delays. Consider the following scenario.
A renowned manufacturer of refrigerators used in the food processing sector provides specialized equipment to its engineers to clean its products. The company makes all possible efforts to see the equipment is available 24/7 to meet customer requests in a timely manner. In spite of these efforts, a field service team of the manufacturer serving customers in a particular region isn’t able to access the cleaning equipment. The manufacturer knows precisely when the equipment will be available thanks to its field service asset management software. This allows the firm to inform its clients when its engineers can visit them and clean the refrigerators. The customers can schedule their operations suitably, ensuring minimal disruption to their businesses.
Having seen what service asset management tools are and how they benefit your organization, let’s proceed to look at how these novel applications are used in various industries.
How Do Companies in Various Sectors Use Service Asset Management Tools?
Organizations in various industries, such as manufacturing, telecommunications, healthcare, and construction, use field service asset management tools to boost productivity and reduce costs. Let’s see how.
Manufacturing – Minimizing Downtime to Maximize Productivity
Manufacturing organizations accord the highest priority to ensuring availability of their production equipment. In fact, a study by Salesforce shows more than 7 out of 10 manufacturing firms consider asset uptime as the most critical KPI. These firms use service asset management tools to carry out preventive maintenance activities with high efficacy, thereby reducing downtime and cutting expenditure incurred on equipment upkeep in a big way.
Telecommunications – Preventing Network Problems for Smooth Coverage
Providers of telecommunications services leave no stone unturned to prevent interruptions to communication services. They utilize field service asset management tools to make sure their engineers are able to monitor the condition of their network infrastructure in real time and attend to any issue swiftly.
Healthcare – Ensuring Life-saving Devices Always Function Well
Hospitals and other healthcare institutions spare no effort to ensure critical medical devices always function effectively. These organizations use asset service management tools to forecast issues with the devices and plan maintenance activities – that’ll help the healthcare providers use the devices optimally and provide first-rate services to patients.
Construction – Enabling Seamless Use of Public Infrastructure
Proper upkeep of public infrastructure assets such as roadways, tunnels, bridges and buildings plays a key role in facilitating their safe and reliable usage. The government uses cutting-edge tools to maintain these assets in good condition and enable citizens to use them without hassles.
Apart from organizations in the sectors listed above, various other companies such as electric power utilities, petroleum refiners, providers of transportation services and so on also use service asset management applications to maximize productivity and serve their clients well.
Let’s now move on to look at a couple of key aspects to get the best ROI on field service asset management tools.
The Twin Mantras to Make the Best Use of Service Asset Management Tools
Analyze Your Current Service Asset Management Process Thoroughly
Analyze your asset maintenance process comprehensively and prepare an exhaustive list of aspects that need improvement. This may take time, but it will go a long way in helping you choose the right tools and get the best value for your investment.
Utilize the Services of an Experienced Technology Solutions Provider
It’s highly advisable to team up with a reputed provider of asset management solutions company to ensure smooth implementation and effective maintenance of your asset management applications. Make sure you evaluate prospective technology partners on the following aspects.
- Experience in helping businesses similar to yours in size and industry get the best value from service asset management tools – ask the company to provide at least 3 credible references
- Qualifications and expertise of the company’s personnel who’ll be assigned your project; study their LinkedIn profiles thoroughly and make sure they’ve the right abilities. Many firms only consider the track record of the vendor organization but fail to check the skills and experience of its people. After all, it’s these people with whom you’ll be working. Isn’t it?
- Processes that the vendor will be using – check how its team will facilitate smooth communication with you and ensure hassle-free execution of the project. It wouldn’t hurt to ask the vendor to share this information in writing.
I’d like to conclude by saying proper use of state-of-the-art service asset management tools will enhance the productivity of your mobile personnel and reduce the cost of maintaining your field service equipment in a big way. At Solunus, our veteran technologists help companies of all sizes in diverse industries reap rich benefits from the latest service asset management applications. We’re fully aware no two firms have the same needs, and hence, lay a strong emphasis on understanding your unique requirements thoroughly. This ‘needs-powered’ approach to solution development empowers us to ensure you get the desired results.
Hope you liked this post. How do you manage your service assets? We’d love to know.
Solunus is a leading Salesforce consulting company, based in Dallas, TX, USA. Our proven ‘needs-first’ approach coupled with our unrivaled expertise of the Salesforce platform enables us to provide the perfect solution to help you deliver delightful services to customers and achieve rapid growth.