There is a plethora of different solutions available for managing Maintenance & Field Service operations – how to make sure you pick the right one for your company?
Have you ever stopped to think about the use of resources and working hours in Maintenance & Field Service operations, or asked what the Field Technicians themselves think about the fluency of these processes? Do you know how exactly the working hours divide between different tasks? If not, I recommend you find out – the best feedback often comes from the grass root level.
ERP's – A double edged sword?
In the last few decades, most companies have started to use ERP’s. This has brought the tools for managing Maintenance & Field Services directly available for the Field Technicians. When used properly, ERP’s can provide great results and significantly increase the efficiency of a business, but in many cases this potential has not realized – often the impact can even be negative. The core problem with many ERP’s is that they are not flexible enough to efficiently support a company’s everyday business processes. This can lead to a situation, where a significant number of working hours is spent on the upkeep, administration and troubleshooting of the system in use.
A good example of this is a situation, where a Field Technician logs a service notification in the ERP in use. Working time is spent on opening the ERP, logging in, finding the correct way to log a certain type of notification, reading instructions and finally creating the actual notification itself. After the initial notification is created, it is managed and updated multiple times as the task progresses, which is often done by multiple employees. In many cases, the Field Technician must also fill in details regarding financial administration, when dealing with spare part management for example. When combined, all these actions add up to a significant amount of time spent on a simple task, which effectively cancels the original purpose of the solution. The potential of increasing efficiency is lost in the complexity of the system in use.
The challenges of Reporting & Administration
One of the big challenges related to Maintenance & Field Services and ERP’s is the disorganized reporting of tasks and working hours. During my career, I’ve trained numerous Field Technicians about the use of ERP’s in their daily operations, emphasizing the significance of accurate and uniform reporting. If the reporting of working hours is too laborious due to the complexity of the system in use, people tend to take shortcuts and not log their hours accurately. This results in differences between the reported and the actualized working hours spent on specific tasks, which makes optimizing these processes and boosting efficiency challenging. Efficiency is also decreased by the large number of working hours spent on the administration and updating of the systems’ base data, such as machine hierarchy, planned maintenance actions and spare part inventory. One might think, that with the rapid development of technology and software, these kinds of problems would be history nowadays. Sadly, this is not the case for many companies – the challenges have not changed much since the early 2000’s.
How to find the right solution for your company?
Choosing the correct software for managing Maintenance & Field Service operations for your company is usually not an easy task. There’s a plethora of different options available, and each one promises to solve all your problems even better than the last one. How to make sure you choose the best option with the right set of tools for your business? 10 years ago, the potential of some solutions might have been limited because the required technology just wasn’t quite there yet, but nowadays that is rarely the case. All the required tools and technologies are out there. The challenge is finding the ones that best suit the needs of your business and produce concrete results fast without overly complex systems. This is where Bluugo stands out from the crowd. Our experts have a long background in working with a variety of ERP’s and Digital Solutions. Using that experience, we are able to quickly dictate what works and what doesn’t and come up with the best solution for each company’s individual needs. We are pioneers in working with cutting edge technologies while also understanding the business side of things.
Our unique Tracking Cloud™ -platform contains all the technology, tools and API’s needed for managing & optimizing your Maintenance & Field Service operations efficiently – and lots more! Tracking Cloud’s™ user interface is designed to be easy-to-use and can be customized to match your company’s brand so you can really stand out from your competitors. The consumer-grade UI allows you to easily share real-time information to all your interest groups: employees, customers and subcontractors. This increases the transparency and efficiency of your business and everyone stays at the same page.
Next time you’re listening to a sales pitch from a solution provider, ask him if their solution can be used to report Maintenance actions with six clicks, including logging in to the system, choosing the correct device, entering working hours, updating spare part inventory and scanning a barcode? All this even without internet connectivity? With a fixed monthly fee without additional costs for user licenses? When you get the negative answer, finish your coffee, grab your phone and call us – we’re happy to tell you more about our solutions. Implementing Tracking Cloud™ for your business is fast and easy – you can have our solution up and running in two weeks.