The Field Service Industry refers to any service that is performed out in the field as opposed to on company property.
At NEC New Zealand, we have a large Field Service capacity, with many of our staff here in New Zealand based out in the field, installing, maintaining, and repairing equipment and systems.
Field Services as an industry has grown considerably and significantly over the past decade. Previously, Field Service engineers were seen as highly technical, trained members of the workforce, however their role goes far beyond the technical skills they are known for.
Today, a Field Service Technician or Engineer is often acting as the face of the business and can in many situations, provide the only real face to face contact between companies and their customers. In a 2017 Customer Service Trends Report, analyst firm Forrester indicated that field service will become “the face of the company” for organisations in many different industries.
The report goes on to say, “These customer interactions are by far the most personal channel for customer engagement, and they can make or break a relationship. [Field service management] technologies will increasingly leverage analytics to manage scheduling and dispatching, taking into account skills, tasks, work orders, assets, timesheets, and service policies.”
What is Field Service Management?
As the report quoted above touched upon, Field Service Management (FSM) is a rapidly growing sector within the Field Service industry.
At its core, FSM is simply any system that is designed to keep track of the various components of field operations. These elements can include:
- Assigning and scheduling work orders
- Dispatching employees to new work assignments
- Communicating with employees in the field
- Collecting field data (such as time of arrival, job completion, requests for information)
- Sharing job data or customer history with field employees
- Routing employees to different jobs
- Managing product inventory and availability
- Vehicle tracking
- Customer portals
Previously, Field Service Management was an extremely labour-intensive process. Operationally, it was an extremely complex process to manually log, monitor, and control the work being carried out in the field.
FSM technology has revolutionised the way the Field Service industry operates. As customer demands and the logistics of managing field teams continue to increase in complexity, it is clear that many business leaders — as well as employees, shareholders, and customers — are discovering the value that FSM software can bring to their organisation as a whole.
The result of the introduction of FSM technology has been an increase in operational efficiencies and a streamlining of communications, scheduling, dispatching, and information sharing between Field Service technicians and the home office.
This allows Field Service technicians and engineers to deliver in other areas and it’s this operational efficiency that has allowed Field Service staff to become the ‘face of the business’, helping to build stronger relationships with customers and deliver a much better experience.
How is the Field Service Management market changing?
The introduction of FSM technology has had a huge impact on the market. A 2020 report by Markets and Markets reported an expected growth from USD $3 billion in 2020 to USD $5.1 billion by 2025. This is up from USD $1.78 billion in 2017.
APAC is also projected to be the fastest growing region during the forecast period, “The APAC region is expected to have major traction toward field service management solution modules due to the rising demand for local manufacturing and high energy demand.
The increasing proliferation of cloud and mobile technologies and changing work dynamics have led to the adoption across verticals, such as manufacturing, energy, construction and real estate, and transportation and logistics of field service management in countries such as China, Japan, India, Australia and New Zealand (ANZ), and Singapore.”
According to Gartner’s Magic Quadrant for Field Service Management (Source: Skedulo), FSM continues to change in several meaningful ways:
- Using contractors in the workforce mix: By 2020, more than 40% of field service work will be performed by technicians who are not employed by the organisation that has direct contact with the customer. Here at NEC New Zealand, we prefer to work a little bit differently. We don’t outsource our field service work to contractors. Instead, all of our field service engineers are full-time members of the NEC New Zealand team which is helping us to deliver high-quality customer service and retains a strong link between our team at head office and our team out in the field.
- Deploying FSM mobile apps: By 2020, more than three-quarters of field service organisations will use mobile apps to organise workflows, manage schedules, optimize travel, or perform other activities beyond data collection.
- Harnessing AI for customer satisfaction: By 2020, 10% of emergency field service work will be triaged and scheduled by intelligent scheduling tools. Non-emergency providers will continue to adopt intelligent tools and systems to improve efficiency and better manage employees’ schedules.
The rapid changes to the Field Services industry have meant that FSM technology development has seen rapid acceleration due to the demand for solutions that are able to move with the rapidly evolving changes in the sector.
NEC New Zealand supply, install and maintain technology for large New Zealand organisations requiring critical-performance ICT infrastructure. NEC Field Services support the delivery of solutions in planning, design, and installation of a range of telecommunication, network, biometric, and ICT services. Supported by NEC’s Technical Assistance Service Centre (TASC) team, available 24/7 fault and emergency response service, NEC Field Services can be deployed to most rural areas of New Zealand, as well as all main centres.
NEC’s Project Management Office together with our Service Delivery Managers, enable end to end solutions with the engagement of NEC’s Field Services. NEC’s expertise in both legacy and the latest network equipment provides both the experience and capability required to tackle any project.
Our state-of-the-art technologies are backed by Field Services expertise and are used in various creative applications to enhance the lives of the people in New Zealand every day, from connecting callers to sorting mail items, from providing timely updates via diverse digital signage networks to empowering law enforcement agencies with biometric technologies.
Whatever sector you work in, if you want to access the best Field Service support here in New Zealand, speak to us today.