To understand what Field Service Management Software is, you first need to understand the term Field Service Management itself. Often shortened to FSM, the term is used to refer to a system used for managing daily activities of teams consisting of service professionals. Those include repair, maintenance, installation, and consultation work – all of which are done on site where needed, as opposed to a business confined to its own spaces. FSM Software refers to programs or packages of programs used to facilitate this in a faster, more efficient and more transparent way.
Field service is nowadays separated into four distinct categories: repair, maintenance, installation and commissioning, and business consultation. Repair is relatively simple – something is not working, a repair technician comes and fixes it. Maintenance can include routine checkups to prevent breakdowns or fixing it when it is underperforming so it doesn’t break down and require repair. Installation and commissioning are the first step after you have purchased a machine: a service technician will come and install it, and then go through a series of steps to check that it is working properly, which is called commissioning. Business consultation is the one category that is not strictly hands-on: it refers to an appointment that can simply include a conversation in which you, the customer, explain your needs and wants, so the company can provide you the best service available.
Although managing these visits in small companies is relatively straightforward, this is not always the case with bigger businesses. FSM software is used to automate all the different field operations, from keeping track of each service technician and their responsibilities, over inventory management, to tracking and scheduling. The field service management market is worth USD 2.8 billion as of 2019, and is expected to grow up to USD 5.9 billion by 2024, at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 16.2% during the forecast period, according to a report by MarketsandMarkets.
Novel ways to interact
This stems from the need to optimize and speed up the services offered, especially through Enterprise File Synchronization and Sharing (EFSS). Another study claims that nearly 75% of businesses that use mobility tools have seen an increase in the productivity of workers, along with an increase in customer satisfaction.
The usage of FSM software now lets businesses interact with customers in novel ways, which are most often bespoke to their needs, and to solve problems quickly and efficiently while keeping all the necessary data neat and organized. This also lets employees notify customers in case of backups or delays, leading to an overall higher satisfaction rate. Integrating the software with a GPS option lets the customer know when their service person may arrive, allowing for a margin of error without inconveniencing the client. As the technology is developing, customers are beginning to expect businesses to offer these services, and while the FSM market is growing, those trailing behind often get overridden by more technologically advanced companies, which means that the importance of choosing the right FSM software for you cannot be understated.