Field Maintenance Services has had a few of the most challenging months due to the global COVID-19 pandemic. The usual way of doing business took an unexpected turn. Companies had to restrict, and in some cases pause entirely in-person field visits.
Businesses had to re-evaluate their business model in some way. Some of them had to embrace the idea of contactless or remote service.
Now, as we continue to navigate through the pandemic with a beacon of hope toward the future, let’s examine the field service trends for 2021 and beyond.
Field service visits can be costly, especially with the labour costs, travel time, vehicle expenses etc. Companies knew that remote work is less expensive but have realized it during these difficult times. They are now accepting new ways and ideas with able technological aid to work remotely in order to reduce operation costs and boost productivity.
However, even in the current scenario, consumer expectations are still in the pre-COVID era. A new study on consumer expectations of technicians and technical support found that most still expect their providers to resolve complaints and problems as quickly and effectively as before with 75% choosing remote service unless utmost necessary.
Adopting New Technologies
Due to COVID-19, customers have started embracing new technologies and relying on software and guides that can help them in quick problem-solving. This means that companies now have to jump on the IoT, AR and VR bandwagon with long-term goals to provide remote services successfully.
These new technologies will not only facilitate technical tasks but will also improve operations and customer lifetime value.
Example: A software can offer step-by-step repair instructions when imposed over a device, making it possible for customers to fix the device on their own. Or the field technician can use smart glasses with AR & VR technology such that he can see what the customer sees and provide live customer service remotely.
Focus on Safety and Risk Management
The year 2020 has taught us that safety should always come first. Even in 2021 and beyond, the safety of the employees and customers will be at the forefront. Field technicians are concerned about their health. Customers want assurances of safe service and in-person visits are as safe as possible.
A set of 2 pre-screening questionnaires can be used. One to identify the severity of the problem and another to gauge the risk of exposure a technician has for different jobs, especially in high-risk population zones. This can turn out to be a risk management trend for foreseeable future.
So, to ensure safety, companies will have to resort to technology.
Example - Companies can make use of mobile applications where field technicians can submit all the paperwork through the app.
A lot is changing not only in IT field services but in the field service industry today. As digital transformation accelerates, field service won’t just be reactive, but proactive.
The next step for companies into field services will be to put these trends into action.