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Mobile apps for field service management
As a rule, a trades or field engineer must be physically on location to finish a work request. Especially on a large site or campus or if a field worker serves multiple customers, work productivity is heavily impacted by travel. Rather than re-entering information at the back office workplace, field operators now use mobile apps to work from their iPad, tablet or mobile phone to update work status, query relevant information and get a digital client signature on their tablet. These mobile devices and apps are connected in real-time with the back office IWMS to ensure that information is always up-to-date. Field engineers can easily upgrade their mobile app version via the regular app stores like GooglePlay or Apple App Store. This reduces IT efforts and costs to deploy mobile field service apps to a broad audience of field engineers and makes sure that despite a wide diversity of mobile devices all engineers use the most recent app.
Extended resource scheduling
Integrated software solutions for field service management support extended functionality in customer contract management to ensure that services and work orders are executed according to agreed contracts and service levels. To ensure the highest productivity of the teams and individuals in the field, integrated software solutions connect with sophisticated and specialised cloud based scheduling services to ensure the most efficient resource scheduling. These scheduling/optimising services take the availability, skills, workloads, travel and many more aspects of resources into account to plan the best possible execution of field services. After scheduling, the back office system automatically dispatches the work orders to the mobile devices of the corresponding field engineers or teams.
Health, safety and compliance
Legislation in health and safety and compliance with regulations has never been as widespread as in field engineering. Maintenance activities can potentially expose people to all sorts of hazards like asbestos, falls, injuries, fire, or electric shocks. To enable both in-house and contracted staff to work safe, they need to be properly briefed on your site, assets and processes, and they need to follow safe working practices. Mobile field applications support field engineers and contractors real-time with relevant information and workflows to ensure they work safely and according to legislation. This information includes work instructions, checklists, manuals, approvals and many more. All activities on the mobile app like acceptance of work, safety checks or agreed instructions are automatically saved in the back office application for compliancy checks, reports, or analysis in case of accidents.
Software as a Service
The number of field engineers and size of teams will vary over time, depending on workloads, customer contracts or special projects. Therefore the use of mobile field service apps needs to be very flexible in terms of number of users and duration of use. Innovative field service software is based on a flexible Software as a Service (SaaS) subscription that includes the use of mobile apps, the cloud service and support. This gives owners/occupiers and service providers maximum flexibility to scale the field services solution easily as demand changes.
Benefits of Field Service Management Software
Research from multiple sources like Forrester, Gartner and Verdantix shows tangible benefits in the digitalisation of field service operations and management, including technician productivity improvement of up to 40%, improved service response times by 30% and reduction of travel time and cost by 25%. Other benefits include:
- Higher first-time right execution of work.
- Better quality of service.
- Shortened processing times.
- Better visibility in productivity and efficiency.
- Compliance with health and safety.
- Better, faster and complete accounting and billing.
- Greener operations.
- Management information and KPI’s to continuously optimise processes and operations.