How BYOD Mobile Apps Can Transform Field Services

Wouldn’t it be great if all your team members in the field could capture data and events and communicate them to management as they occur using BYOD mobile apps?

Do any of the following sound familiar? “We didn’t have time to fill out the paperwork,” “It didn’t seem that important,” or, “He said he was fine at the time!”

How many times did not documenting that near miss or equipment issue come back to haunt you later?

If field personnel had a way to quickly and easily document events electronically as they occur, some of these issues could be mitigated.  The problem is that most field system programs require expensive hardware and software that is not practical to distribute to everyone on the crew.

But don’t most of your field personnel have smartphones?  The benefits of enabling everyone in the field to be an agent for data collection are tremendous.  Utilizing BYOD mobile apps on their devices, field personnel can capture events as they occur, creating real-time visibility for managers. When only supervisors are able to capture data electronically, or even worse, if a paper-based system is the only option, critical information can and will be lost, potentially resulting in significant and unexpected costs.

BYOD Mobile Apps with Field Service Software?

You probably are familiar with the concept of BYOD (Bring Your Own Device).  This means allowing team members to utilize their smartphone, tablet, laptop etc. based upon their preference and what they are carrying on a regular basis.  Most field personnel carry a smartphone.  Why not use it?  Using BYOD mobile apps allows you to capture data including pictures, location, company assets in the vicinity, and other key information can be installed as an app on everyone’s smartphone, creating an information gathering network that will keep management updated and provide much higher visibility into field operations and allowing you to utilize new or existing asset tracking software on the go.

But There’s No Data …

One challenge that can face field operations who wish to automate is a lack of available connectivity.  Your team may be working in a remote area where no cell service is available, with limited and high-latency satellite connection, or with no available connectivity at all.  This is a common issue for those who need to create oilfield tickets online. In this situation, many existing software solutions just don’t work.  Fortunately, smartphone apps can be designed to store data locally until connectivity is re-established, allowing field personnel to continue capturing information in the meantime.

Improving Customer Experience

Do you want to provide better customer service?  Hire and train good people, but also provide them with tools that allow them to easily report customer feedback!  Enabling field personnel to capture data during operations creates a straight line of communication between the customer and management.  Customer feedback can be captured and reported to management in real-time, allowing issues to be quickly resolved.    The result: problems can be addressed before they are allowed to escalate.

How to Stop Losing Revenue

Who can argue with increasing revenue?  The fact is, most service operations have issues with missed revenue due to errors preparing service tickets in the field.  Automating the process and incorporating checks and balances into the service ticket preparation step can greatly reduce this problem.  As a result, revenue will increase as field personnel can more accurately record services and how assets and materials are being used on the job, memorializing the information as things happen rather than after-the-fact.  The result: a more efficient and accurate process that increases revenue per ticket and reduces billing errors and DSO.

Centralization and Standardization

As you are well aware, collecting data in the field has traditionally been difficult: a process prone to error and full of pitfalls in which data regularly goes missing or is misinterpreted, leading to further errors and omissions. Today, utilizing field service software with BYOD mobile apps and occasionally connected capabilities allows these risks to be greatly reduced by collecting information at its source and making it easy to record in an accurate manner.  Combining a field-based data collection process with a disciplined back-office process can create a flow of information straight from the field to management in near real-time, maximize revenue, reduce costs, decrease liability, and ensure conformance with regulations.

Find out more about how you can increase the efficiency and productivity of your work practices by contacting us about OFS PRO, and taking advantage of a free trial and consultation.

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