When exploring ways to improve any operation, performing a modeling exercise is a proven method to:
Identify new issues or validate known issues
Quantify the operation steps and the impact they have on quality, costs or efficiencies
Test potential solutions before they are fully implemented
While a lot of this sounds like it should be performed in a laboratory instead of at a business, think again. Every industry can benefit from optimization modeling – including the field service industry.
With the right system in place, optimization modeling for field services can occur in several areas:
Evaluate existing business process – can the end-to-end workflow be improved through technology to eliminate paper and manual and duplicate processes?
Increase productivity – are certain processes taking longer than they should? Can you compare with industry best practices or similar businesses to benchmark?
Optimize decisions – do humans have to perform repetitive tasks and analysis? Can some of these decisions be automated in order to help eliminate errors while reducing the workload of your dispatchers, managers, or other key personnel?
The practice of optimization modeling can be an independent task that is performed when implementing a new field service solution. Optimization modeling can also be included as a routine and automated operation.
For example, a dispatcher may have to review all pending work orders at the end of each day, and then determine what work assignments will be distributed for the next day. The decision making process involves many intricate business rules that vary from one company to another. If performed manually, even the best dispatchers can make errors and inadvertently skip work to be done.
With an optimized modeling solution in place, the effort involved is automated with a series of business rules that are configured into the system. The dispatcher can then create a variety of scenarios and adjust the configuration to make sure the right choices are made. For instance more skilled technicians should be dispatched to higher priority or more difficult assignments, while other technicians could handle routine maintenance work. Once the right business rules are “locked in” the optimized modeling routine can be run on a daily basis to build out schedules for field resources.
By using a field service system that can provide optimized modeling, your business will realize better productivity, lower costs, higher accuracy and quality, and increased customer service levels. All of this means higher sales and better profits for your field service company.