Using Workforce Management to Take Control of Productivity

Taking Control of Your Productivity

How to complete more jobs each day

The struggle to improve productivity has always been a major one, with businesses constantly looking for new ways to achieve more with the same or fewer resources. As the struggle continues, organizations are faced with increasing financial constraints as well as growing pressure to offer higher levels of customer service through greater organizational efficiency.

Volatile fuel prices and economic uncertainty contribute to unstable profit margins, placing limits on a business’s ability to make strategic investments that will foster organizational efficiency. As a result, business leaders are forced to examine the way their organization operates and look for new and cost effective ways to achieve greater productivity and gain the competitive edge needed to succeed in today’s crowded marketplace.

Customer satisfaction is ranked as a number one priority for organizations, yet 83 % of directors interviewed in a recent study[1] believe that future improvements in customer service would need to be achieved with fewer resources. AberdeenGroup in its State of Service 2013 report found that customer service is a strategic area of focus for organizations, and while they acknowledge that this isn’t surprising, the real challenge comes from balancing the cost of service with profitability.

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The most serious customer complaint is that the problem isn’t resolved the first time and requires a second visit – inconvenient for the customer and a significant cost to the company in terms of time, labor, travel, missed SLAs, reputation, etc. It is also a inefficient use of workforce when a service call requires a follow-up visit since the technician is often one of the company’s greatest expenses.

So how do organizations manage to get more and better results from their already stretched workforce to increase productivity and get more done in a day without breaking budgets?

Industry Findings

A productive organization is usually a profitable one and as a result improving business efficiency is critical, especially for organizations deploying field-based workforces.

  • Some 90 % of field service directors say that increasing workforce productivity and utilization is an important strategic objective[2]
  • Improved efficiency and productivity continue to be a top goal for field organizations in 2013, as they were in 2012[3]
  • Technology underpins the drive towards customer service excellence with 76% of field directors stating that they plan to update their scheduling and dispatch solutions.[4]

Achieving a dynamic workforce management environment is key to increasing the operational performance of a mobile workforce. Gaining insight into what is happening in the field in real-time is critical to optimizing productivity and delivering higher levels of service excellence.  With the next generation of field service management technology, the ability to manage a team of mobile workers and monitor their performance against plans for the day has never been easier.

Technology can help with improved productivity in many ways, including:

  • Providing business intelligence (not just raw data) from a number of variables and metrics in a relevant, understandable way which helps with instant decision-making on the daily performance of an organization
  • Realizing robust and reliable intelligence, which also provides trend identification over the medium to long term, helping businesses stay current on targets, SLAs, budgets, resourcing, pricing etc
  • Creating visibility to identify problems or barriers allowing managers to easily see what is preventing the company/the division/the team/the individual from doing more jobs – if you don’t measure it, you can’t manage it
  • Allowing flexible scheduling based on real-time changing priorities in the work day and creating revised schedules instantly, minimizing the time needed to create the daily plan as well as providing an on-going analysis and identification of gaps where mobile workers could be better utilized.
  • Optimizing route planning to increase operational time against travel and idling time.

Organizations now have the ability to manage end-to-end processes of all field-based work and as a result are able to manage in-day complications which may put plans in jeopardy. Performance analytics can provide immediate information to give managers the ability to make intelligent decisions in real-time. With field service technology, organizations receive management reports and analyzed data that enable them to identify the right worker for the right job, to be at site at the right time with the right tools and equipment time and time again; ultimately increasing the number of jobs being completed per day.

For more information on Trimble Field Service Management solutions including Work Management visit

[1] The Road Ahead Report – the future of field service management, 2012

[2] The Road Ahead Report – the future of field service management, 2012

[3] AberdeenGroup – Field Service 2013. Workforce Management Guide

[4] The Road Ahead Report – the Future of Field Service Management, 2012

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