(Topline Results from SFGSM’s 2014 Field Service Management Benchmark Survey – Part 2)
Based both on the current survey findings and SFGSM’s ongoing research, it is not surprising that the field services community recognizes it will need to increase its investments in new technologies and mobile tools in order to compete in an expanding global marketplace. In addition, it also recognizes that it will need to develop and/or improve the Key Performance Indicators (KPIs), or metrics, it uses to measure the impact that these implementations, deployments and technology advances will actually have on the organization’s performance.
The top Strategic Actions currently being undertaken by Field Service Organizations (FSOs) are:
- 52% Develop/Improve Metrics, or KPIs to measure FS Performance
- 44% Invest in Mobile Tools to support Field Technicians
- 34% Integrate New Technologies into existing FS Operations
- 30% Provide additional Training to FS Technicians and Dispatchers
- 29% Improve Planning & Forecasting with respect to Field Operations
- 26% Automate existing Manual FS processes and activities
- 25% Provide Enterprise-wide Access to important Field-collected data
- 18% Increase Customer Involvement in Web-based Service Process
- 15% Hire additional Field Service Technicians and/or Dispatchers
- 14% Outsource some, or all, Field Service activities to partners or vendors
The ”new” global economy also demands that these investments be made in a certain balance that allows the newer technologies to support a “back to the basics” approach with respect to running a successful – and profitable – field services organization. In other words, services organizations need to embrace “new” technologies, but without forgetting that it is still “all about the customer.” Some of the basic strategic actions that between one-quarter and one-half of respondents also cite include training, planning and forecasting, service delivery automation and enterprise-wide access to important field-collected data.
Planned strategic actions over the next 12-month period reflect a more dynamic, rather than static, approach to the field service marketplace. For example, an additional 41% of respondents plan to develop and/or improve their use of field service KPIs, or metrics, in the next 12 months, and nearly as many plan to integrate new technologies (36%) and invest in the next generation of mobile tools (33%) to support their technicians in the field. Other key planned actions will be taken in areas relating to the automation of existing manual field service processes or activities (33%), improving planning and forecasting activities (32%), and providing additional training for field technicians and dispatchers (30%).
What these data primarily show is that the field service community recognizes the need to take specific strategic actions to enhance and improve existing service operations, and that these actions begin first and foremost with the need to develop and/or improve the use of service metrics and KPIs in measuring and monitoring their service delivery performance. In addition, it shows that FSOs also recognize the need to invest in the right technologies and mobile tools to empower their resources both in the field, and in the back office, to improve existing processes, meet the growing needs of customers, and make greater contributions to the bottom line.
The survey findings reveal that there are basically five service performance metrics, or KPIs, presently being used by a majority (i.e., 50% or more) of the FSOs that participated in the 2014 Field Service Management Benchmark Survey. They include:
- 80% Customer Satisfaction (up from 70% in the 2011 Survey)
- 72% Total Service Revenue (up from 66%)
- 69% Total Service Cost (up from 51%)
- 59% Field Technician Utilization (up slightly from 56%)
- 52% Service Revenue, as a Percent of Total Revenue (not asked in 2011)
However, there are also an additional seven KPIs that are used by just under one-half of FSOs to help them measure their performance. These include:
- 49% On-site Response Time (down from 51% in the 2011 Survey)
- 48% Field Technician Productivity (down from 66%)
- 47% First Time Fix Rate (down from 45%)
- 46% Mean-Time-to-Repair (MTTR) (down from 49%)
- 45% Percent of Total Revenue Under SLA/Contract (not asked in 2011)
- 45% Service Level Agreement (SLA) Compliance (down from 48%)
- 43% Service Parts Revenue, as a Percent of Total Service Revenue (not asked in 2011)
Thus, presented in this manner, it appears that the most commonly used service performance KPIs from two years back are even more commonly used by FSOs today.
Next up (in Part 3) will be a discussion of which Key Performance Indicators (KPIs), or metrics, FSOs are currently using to measure their service delivery performance.