Field Service Connect 2019’s top theme was today’s customer who expects connected and sophisticated service. Companies are experiencing similar problems in adapting to changing consumer demands.
Last week, leaders from across the country met to discuss the future of the industry.
The three major takeaways are:
Understanding your customer's journey is a priority. The key challenge is identifying gaps in your service process.
"From when a customer first calls for service, to when the first tech gets out, to when the job is ultimately done; the customer had no visibility." -Steven Zannos, Sr Director of Customer Care at Electrolux.
This exercise drove Electrolux to rethink their approach.
You can track your pizza from Dominoes. You can see your windshield coming to you from Safelite. But you can’t see when your service technician will be coming to fix your dishwasher.
“If you are not pushing out that information to your customers, they will give you a call” Zannos stated.
Electrolux also found an added benefit. Sharing information with customers made them more forthcoming with post-service feedback.
“Fail fast, win faster.” -Charles Hughes, VP of Technical Site Services of Acuative
Hughes continued that while "we’re a service business, we’re also a people business." Customers expect companies to react fast in today’s climate.
The industry is changing but change is an opportunity that should not be feared. Agile workflows allow for teams to create and move on fast while speeding up innovation.
How do you foster an agile culture? First, your leadership must be agile and able to take accountability.
Embracing agile practices from the top down has allowed Acuative to respond quickly to the marketplace. Bonus: they've also improved margins and revenue.
"We get the voice of the customer. It’s our job to collate and bucket to drive it through the organization for change.” Terry Diaferio, Sr. Corporate Director: North American Service at Tennant Company.
Field service teams are on the front line with the customer. The importance of soft skills for mobile technicians is more important than ever. Especially in the age of social media.
Laurie Battaglia from Aligned at Work brought up a surprising statistic. When asked what the split was of soft skills vs technical skills of their mobile workforce, conference attendees replied 60% vs. 40%.
Investing in employee programs to support the growth of soft skills will be a continuing trend in field service.
Not only do customers demand transparency, but so do technicians. No technician wants to go anywhere they don’t know what they’re getting into.
How can you support your service staff? Keep them informed of job data and automate tedious tasks like checking into a service or updating a customer.
This year’s delegates received a custom bag filled with our favorite Old Fashioned recipe and chilled beverage stones. They also received a copy of The Radical Age of Uberization.
Do your service gaps include lack of visibility on the day-of-service?