Welcome back! You’ve made it to our fourth installment of the Field Service Process Automation series, dedicated to revealing how an automated events manager can revamp your field service operations. So far we’ve looked at how events manager can automate mobile tasks, scheduling, and service contract management. If you haven’t already, be sure to check out the rest of the series!
Today, we’ll address how greater intelligence into parts and inventory management and automated inventory features can improve the productivity and profitability of your entire organization.
Never Lose Your Keys Again
You know how frustrating it is when you can’t find your keys in the morning? You’re already running late when you go to grab your keys off the hook (where you’re sure you put them when you walked in the door!) and they’re not there. You scavenge the house, checking tables and pockets and drawers and 20 minutes later you find them at the bottom of your laundry hamper. Finally, you rush out the door, already over 20 minutes late. Your boss won’t be happy and you’re behind on everything you need to get done.
This feeling of frustration, like losing your keys, is what it can feel like to run an inefficient inventory operation for your field service organization. When you don’t know where your parts are and your technicians aren’t prepared with the right parts to complete the job, response times and fix rates are lower, customers are unhappy, and you’re left feeling behind and frustrated.
How awesome would it be to eliminate these frustrations by ensuring your technicians were always prepared with necessary parts for each job? Well, with events manager, alerts, escalations, and workflows allow you to set inventory standards and criteria, keeping inventory stocked and parts where they need to be at the right time. Like having a beeper on your keys that alerts you when they’re not where they should be, events manager triggers alerts to ensure parts are where they need to be, with the right technician, at the right time so your operations run smoothly and services are performed promptly.
How Inventory Alerts Work
Okay, so you know that managing inventory is a challenging and important process. So how do make sure each part is accounted for and with the right people? How does events manager and work order management software actually work to organize inventory?
- 1. It alerts techs of delivery delays for critically-needed parts or materials: If an important part is delayed, technicians are alerted in advance so they don’t show up on the customer site without the necessary parts. They can communicate with customers and keep everyone informed through their mobile field service software to ensure customers receive the best service and techs are as productive as possible.
- 2. It sends reports to inventory managers aligning each work order with the appropriate parts: You can set up automatic, daily alerts for inventory managers so they can organize the appropriate parts for each job ahead of time. When the parts are set up and ready to go, technicians can simply stop into the parts depot, pick up what they need, and get to the job site, creating more billable hours for the tech and larger profits for your company.
- 3. It sends alerts for service contract parts: Recurring work orders often require rare or expensive parts. With this in mind, events manager can alert managers when these work orders are coming up so they can order the exact number of appropriate parts. This way the tech is ready with the parts needed to perform PM visits, but your company doesn’t risk letting expensive parts go to waste.
- 4. It integrates parts into scheduling criteria: When parts are integrated with
field service scheduling software
- , schedulers can see which techs have what parts in their vehicles and schedule according to availability. For example, if a call comes in for a break-fix on a broken generator valve, the scheduler can see which techs have valves in their vans and schedule accordingly, ensuring the technician on the job is equipped with the parts they need.
Direct and Indirect Benefits
With the additional intelligence and functionality events manager brings to your service organization, you’ll start to see improved results in a number of areas. Listed below are some key benefits of managing an organized inventory.
- Prepared technicians: When technicians receive the right parts in their trucks for the right jobs, their performance and productivity improve, directly benefiting the company’s overall success.
- Increased customer satisfaction: When technicians are more productive and prepared with the right parts, chances are they’ll fix the problem the first time and decrease time spent performing the task or searching for a part. With quicker and more successful visits, customers will be more satisfied.
- Improved response time: When inventory managers are aware of what parts are where and what parts are needed for each job, they are better prepared to send a technician promptly to a job site. Likewise, schedulers with access to the parts each tech has in his/her van can schedule the closest technician with the right parts. This visibility increases the odds that techs will be prepared to solve the problem and improves response times for techs to get on site.
- Reduced travel time: If technicians are prepared with the right parts the first time around, they don’t have to return to inventory to retrieve the part they’re missing, reducing overall technician travel time.
- Greater workforce productivity: With less idle time due to more prepared technicians, techs can focus on what they do best: service work. And by spending more time on billable labor, techs improve overall company productivity.
The Future of your Inventory Operations
Customer frustration, increased cost, and additional drive times are all adverse outcomes of technicians not having the right parts. Your organization can avoid these frustrations in the future by investing in events manager technology that will keep your company and inventory personnel alert.
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