How IoT is Improving Field Service

May 11, 2020 - by Synoptek

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As per a report by McKinsey, B2B applications are estimated to capture at least 70 percent of the value of IoT, which could have a potential economic impact of $3.9 trillion to $11.1 trillion a year by 2025. Of course, scaling the impact to this level means overcoming several technical, regulatory, and organizational barriers.

IoT and Field Service

But the pace with which organizations are incorporating IoT into their products and service offerings, the estimation is not too far-fetched. In fact, the one business area where IoT has already started showing excellent results is – the field service.  By deriving actionable insights from the information gathered through the technologies and using it to improve the delivery and execution of services across industry verticals, IoT has shown extreme potential in transforming the service sector.

3 Ways IoT is Improving Field Service

Simply put, IoT is about connecting a device and the Internet to each other. This could include commonly used devices such as mobile phones, headphones to complex machinery such as the jet engine of an airplane. As the field service industry revolves around monitoring complex systems for damage or performance issues, connecting these devices to the Internet has helped simplify and fasten the service delivery processes. The speed and efficiency brought in the service delivery processes due to IoT have massively disrupted the notion of how customer service has been done so far – and for the better.

Let’s look at the three ways in which IoT has transformed the field service sector forever.

1. IoT and Technicians: Provide Faster Service and Take Up More Cases

In a world without IoT, the technicians had to physically go to the device in order to first diagnose and then resolve the problem. However, with IoT, as more and more devices get connected to digital networks, the diagnosis process has become majorly autonomous – as the faults are reported via the digital channels. This saves the technicians the time required for traveling to the client location as well as the time required for preliminary diagnostics.

As per a WBR white paper, ‘The World Made Web: What Service Will Look Like After IoT’–  about 68% of field service industry experts predict a major role for wearable technology in the future, and 53% think the same for the full implementation of IoT technology, the potential for remote diagnosis and repair is huge.

2. IoT and Connectivity: Preventive Service Becomes the Norm

IoT technology not only allows connected devices to report to a central hub but also enables them to be able to communicate with one another. This helps in enhancing the collective performance of the devices and also gives field service technicians a complete view of the devices’ ecosystem to be able to detect, analyze, and resolve the issues at very nascent stages.

In a well-integrated ecosystem, it is easier for technicians to uncover related problems or identify trends that can lead to/escalate into a failure. As a result, rather than relying on fixed maintenance schedules and break-fix approach, organizations ensure that the anomalies are detected in advance and addressed through simpler fixes rather than large-scale repairs.

3. IoT and Automation: Help Save Customers Time and Improves Inventory Management

Automation and IoT together represent a massive breakthrough in the customer service sector. Unlike the multi-step, manual, convoluted, and telephonic/email complaint registration process in the pre-IoT era, registering complaints/issues in the IoT era requires zero effort from the customers’ end.

With IoT, when a device needs service, it independently contacts the field service agency along with the diagnostic results, and the technician. Then if possible, it either fixes the issue(s) remotely or comes well-equipped with everything needed to fix the reported problem.

At no stage do the customers have to haggle with the service agency for explaining the issue or fixing up a schedule for the technicians. Such seamless experiences help field service agencies to develop a long-lasting, productive relationship with their customers.

Not only this, IoT-connected devices also help field services agencies keep their inventory up to date. As the devices automatically signal operations teams and warehouses when they need a new part, the technicians in the warehouse get a clear view of the requirements and are able to manage the inventory efficiently.

Ensure a Better, More Productive Relationship with Clients by Leveraging IoT

IoT-enabled infrastructure reporting to field service personnel not drastically reduces the time and effort required to address an issue; it also enhances the client satisfaction level to a great degree.

IoT technology also enables field services agencies to predict and prevent failure before they impact the business continuity at their clients’ side – which results in less interruption on the clients’ revenue streams.

To learn how to integrate IoT into your field service business, how the future of IoT will impact your business, and the IoT Connector for Microsoft Dynamics 365 solution, contact us.