Study offers a peek behind the kimono of post-implementation reality.
Nothing is ever as we think it’s going to be. Being an adult, getting married or earning that degree or promotion, we think all of these things will be transformational, and they are, but not as we had imagined or hoped.
Implementing field service management (FSM) software can be the same way, at least according to a survey of business decision makers conducted for IFS by the publishers of Plant Services magazine. 80 percent of respondents, an overwhelming majority, said they thought field service was a growth area or revenue driver, but only 40 percent had a FSM software solution in place or planned to implement one in the next three years.
What is perhaps more interesting is that those who had not implemented a solution had a different vision about what software functionality would be most significant than their peers who had FSM software in place. Specifically, according to the study:
“While many of their responses aligned with those of the software users, it’s worth noting two points of difference: (1) asset condition monitoring–future users thought they would use these features more than actual users reported; and (2) parts and inventory management–the percentage of future users who thought they would use these FSM software functions (15.5 percent) was significantly lower than the 29.5 percent of respondents who cited these functions in actual use, suggesting that future users may be missing some key low-hanging fruit when laying out the business case to invest.”
More mundane functionality most important
While condition monitoring holds tremendous potential and is something IFS Field Service Management customers take advantage of, it is not as foundational of a discipline as is spare parts management. The right FSM software will deliver full control over the parts and logistics operation, from central warehouses, inventory kept on each vehicle and inventory kept at a customer site. It can calculate stock levels based on historical patterns, estimate new part minimum and maximum inventory levels and enforce these with rule-based replenishment. This not only helps limit the carrying cost of inventory, but it is a key component in improving the customer experience.
Whether you are dealing with an agricultural coop with a self-propelled sprayer that needs a new boom valve or an aggregate quarry where their rock crusher needs a new impactor, you can deliver no service without the part. And until the correct part is installed, these assets will be nonproductive.
So even if there were sensors mounted on these pieces of equipment notifying you as to which part was required, if the part is not in stock… well, you get the point.
Implementing FSM software does change things. It might not always deliver all of the forward-looking technologies that the analysts are writing about immediately, but those initial steps will, in fact, deliver improvements to your ability to profitably service your customer.
But don’t take our word for it. Download the special report based on this survey, “Are You Hesitating on Field Service Management Software?”
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