The Field Service industry is a giant and growing stronger every day with more than 20 million field technicians around the world. Organizations spend billions on technology geared to drive innovation, improve efficiency, and generate profit and revenues for these workers.
Four technologies that are helping make digital transformation possible in field service are wearable devices, the Internet of Things (IoT), drones, and mobile devices. The use of these evolutionary technologies is helping leading companies increase margins, improve customer loyalty and, most importantly, generate more revenue.
Companies are taking advantage of emerging technologies to transition from manual, time-consuming service operations while preserving legacy information. Mobile access to business data eliminates mountains of paper from inspection and maintenance functions and can be utilized in completing more critical tasks. The ability to access information from anywhere, anytime with mobile devices allows your workers to free up time for more productive tasks, leading to a positive impact on revenue for the organization.
With mobility, supervisors and managers have more visibility into the real-time status of notifications and work orders to better monitor service and productivity levels of individuals. The full potential of the workforce can only be realized when they have enough information to appropriately perform their tasks.
Mobile solutions provide field service technicians and engineers with intuitive and seamless user experiences, improving user adoption. Mobile solutions not only optimize time and effort and shorten response times, but they also enrich decision making for the field workers. Enterprise-grade mobile solutions empower field workers with features such as mobile GIS which can be used by technicians to locate individual inspection points and identify the shortest routes with turn by turn navigation.
Drones are becoming a critical necessity in the field. Field service technicians often need to go to remote locations to fix issues or respond to service calls on equipment. Drones are used by pipeline operators to map pipelines and survey lines as well as for right-of-way monitoring. They are extremely useful in hard-to-reach and remote places and areas affected by natural disasters. A drone can be sent to predict potential safety hazards before sending technicians on-site.
Field visits are costly, whether they are scheduled inspections or alarm responses. With the use of drones equipped with small cameras, workers can search for problems while equipment is still operating to determine what needs to be fixed before shutting down operations.
It is not surprising that wearables are having the most significant impact in field service. Wearables are widely used throughout the industry to improve and capture connected data (i.e. location information, product data, stock/inventory), which can be labor-intensive to track.
Wearables have many benefits for field service, whether in the form of smart glasses or head-mounted tablets (HMT). They provide cost savings and enhanced customer experiences by empowering field service technicians to fix issues faster. Wearables increase employee productivity and enable them to perform transactions hands-free. Employees can interact with rich data, audio, video, visual displays, and more — all while freely roaming in the field or their workstation.
The Internet of Things (IoT) is transforming the field service industry in ways that were not foreseen a few years ago. The number of connected devices worldwide is expected to eclipse 38 billion by 2025. The field service industry revolves around monitoring assets for damage or performance issues and needs to react quickly to rectify issues. IoT-connected devices allow companies to quickly locate and maintain assets via real-time alerts and sensors. Companies can find bottom-line value from IoT devices and services, but this will only occur when their IoT devices seamlessly interact with SAP back-end systems, which will improve overall asset utilization.
Innovapptive's Expertise with Emerging Tech
Innovapptive understands the importance of incorporating emerging technologies into your enterprise solutions. We offer highly configurable cloud-based enterprise mobile solutions for Field Service Operations, Supply Chain, and Enterprise Asset Management (EAM).
Our solutions support the emerging tech we've discussed above. Integration with wearable devices enables users to create work orders or notifications and release work orders and confirm operations flawlessly using wearable devices on Android or iOS platforms. Drone-support for our suite of Mobile Workforce Management Solutions allows service technicians to efficiently and safely complete inspections without requiring additional software.