The Future of Field Service: Social – Mobility – Cloud

Social collaboration is the key to unlocking the vast, untapped wealth of knowledge spread across your organisation.


Social

Many analysts believe that the next wave of efficiency in mobilising your workforce is the area of social collaboration. There are a number of social networks for businesses, most notably Yammer, but many of these are not especially suited for the mobile worker.

Collaboration can reduce phone calls back to the office and avoid costly revisits. If faced with a challenging problem, the field worker can ask a question of their colleagues, and include photos or videos for clarification. This instant access to their peers and a currently untapped wealth of knowledge will enable tasks to be completed quicker and more cost-effectively.

Mobile As discussed in the previous post, there has never been a better time to mobilise your workforce. Internet enabled smartphones usage continues to sore, while at the same time reliable and affordable data plans are available in many regions around the globe.

While Field Service Management solution providers currently offer a mix of native apps, supporting one platform, such as iOS or Android, Gartner believes that the rapid adoption of HTML5 will eventually see a shift towards web apps that offer support all HTML5 enabled devices and offering levels of functionality now enjoyed by native apps.

Cloud

Cloud computing and in particular the move to house vast amounts of data offsite has accelerated in recent years. Many vendors now offer Software as a Service (SaaS) field service management systems that are entirely sourced online and can run on any internet connected device. Cloud computing also facilitates better connections between applications, enabling the mobile worker to gain access to any number of solutions, such as mapping solutions, inventory and product reference material, even access to finance or HR systems.

Harnessing Shared Knowledge

To help you harness the enormous amount of knowledge spread across your organisation, EziBusiness has released a new Knowledge Base component. This feature enables member of your workforce ask questions and get instant answers from the colleagues, without the need to phone around, or send a blanket email. Users can also browse recent posts and search answers for similar problems, helping them find a solution quickly, keeping your customers happy.

Sources

Social Collaboration: Your Next Step With Mobility, http://www.fieldtechnologiesonline.com/doc/social-collaboration-your-next-step-with-mobility-0001?sectionCode=Welcome&templateCode=Single&user=20&source=nl:37534

Gartner, Top 10 Strategic Technology Trends for 2013, http://www.gartner.com/technology/research/top-10-technology-trends/

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