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The A – Z of Field Service Management in EV Industry

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Kaluri Shankar

Field service management typically involves dispatching workers or contractors to a location outside company premises to install, maintain or repair equipment, systems or assets. Field service managers keep track of an organization’s field resources and coordinate the work of field service practitioners who deliver skilled, specialized or proprietary services to clients.

Field service management activities include:
● Field service scheduling means arranging employee schedules, service appointments and expected work order completion timelines.

● Field service dispatch management is coordinating dispatch, i.e., when a field service technician or specialist is sent out on a work assignment.

● Work order management is the process of assigning and tracking service work orders from creation through completion to customer invoicing.

● Inventory management is the process of keeping track of parts and supplies, including the transfer of products, consumption, adjustments and more.

● Field service contract management is the process of managing contracts with your customers and ensuring service level agreements (SLAs) are fulfilled.

Benefits of field service management
Effective field service management solutions integrate data from enterprise asset management systems with remote data from the field — including IoT and mobile devices — to help a company manage its resources.

Benefits of field service management include:
● Increasing uptime: Identify necessary repairs earlier in the asset lifecycle for always-on operations, high levels of performance and reduced downtime.

● Shortening the mean time to repair and improving first-time fix rates: Ensure the right technician is assigned to the job and provide them with the right data at the right time on a single platform.

● Empowering field service technicians: Provide technicians with remote assistance and mobile capabilities that help them to stay safe, be compliant, troubleshoot and complete work tasks efficiently.

● Reducing field service costs: Using data and insights to complete maintenance tasks at the right time and most effectively and efficiently.

● Increasing customer satisfaction: Know if technicians are meeting customer expectations and respond promptly to concerns or unexpected delays.

Challenges of field service management
Maintenance technician leaders face many challenges, including attracting and retaining talent amid a shrinking talent pool, underskilled workforces, growing operational costs and a lack of technology to manage complex assets and expanding service needs. The key to managing these challenges is employing software that can automate specific tasks to reduce the strain on your workforce, improve knowledge transfer and provide capabilities that support technicians in the field.

Mobile service technicians face challenges such as scheduling conflicts, the capacity to acquire essential data, miscommunication about job tasks, and having to make return trips. To overcome these challenges, more main system CMMS capabilities must be available on phones and tablets, including the ability to review asset maintenance histories, access detailed technical specifications and GIS-location data, examine work order information, process billing, and communicate in real-time.

Finally, many companies have implemented several separate solutions over time and now have multiple tools that don’t work together. For field service management to run smoothly, it’s critical to have cohesive, integrated, end-to-end solutions that are easy for field teams to use and provide dashboards that offer enterprise-wide visibility of a company’s resources.

What is field service management software?
Field service management software helps businesses manage all the resources involved in field service management activities. It can help managers and technician’s process job orders, automate scheduling and dispatch, keep track of service and repair tasks, manage customer service contracts, collect payments and more.

Mobile field service management software
The cloud and mobile capabilities offered by some field service management software provide access to real-time communications and keep technicians connected to important information and support while in the field. With mobile capabilities, field service technicians can capture images on their devices and access data from remote assets and digital twins to evaluate the root causes of issues. They can also extend collaboration with AI and AR capabilities that are becoming more standard.

Enterprise asset management software
Enterprise asset management (EAM) software helps companies maintain and control their operational assets and equipment, both off and on-premises. By centralizing asset information and implementing AI-powered remote monitoring and analytics, maintenance managers can maximize asset utilization, increase productive uptime and reduce operational costs.

Inventory management system
An inventory management system helps companies optimize their maintenance, repair and operations (MRO) inventory. It can provide an accurate, granular view of MRO inventory performance while delivering optimized recommendations for stock and reorder levels for each stocked item.

Field service management industry applications

Technicians are typically dispatched for preventive or predictive maintenance and repair of equipment under warranty within various sectors such as automotive, aerospace, defense, electronics, industrial products, consumer products and more.

Service technicians must have credentials to particulars about assets and inventory, including fuel management, driver logs, spare parts, bay schedules and other data critical to maintaining rail, road and air traffic operations.

Energy and utilities
Technicians must consider geospatial information from remote assets while accommodating complex crew scheduling for high volume and time-sensitive work orders.

Oil and gas
In these industries, the emphasis is on safety, reliability, compliance and performance. Companies can reduce costs by standardizing and streamlining field service maintenance practices.

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