If you have a business in the service industry, there’s a big chance that some of your operations will extend beyond the office. As the business grows, you will have one or several teams out there in the field performing various tasks daily or occasionally depending on the current demands. Whether you are the manager or the owner, managing such a team can present a wide spectrum of challenges.
For instance, it can be a bit daunting to tell whether all members of the team are at work in the required hours and are diligently performing their roles as stipulated in their employment contracts. Some might give themselves time off or not show up for work. It is even harder to keep track of progress and monitor performance on field service tasks when dealing with outsourced teams.
While all this can cause frequent headaches, it doesn’t necessarily have to be the trigger to your downfall. You can streamline field service operations and keep track of everything, provided you have focus and use the right approach. Without further ado, here are some tips on how to better manage a field service team.
1. Embrace Technology for Better Response and Delivery
There is no lie in the fact that the world has changed greatly over the years, especially due to technological advancements. Most of these advancements are designed to save time and money while increasing convenience and reducing the manual effort spent. When managing a field service team, technology can help streamline processes and make the job easier for you.
If you guessed right, you need to embrace technology even more if your business is located in countries like China, the US, or the United Kingdom, where technological expertise is immensely utilized. If you are providing field services in England, Wales, Northern Ireland, or Scotland, field service management software in the UK can help ease your worries. The best part is that you don’t always have to be behind a desktop computer screen to utilize this software. You can get a version that is mobile compatible for better team management in real-time even while away from the office. A reputed field service management solution also comes with features like:
- Job sheet management
- Instantaneous job detail updates
- Progress and time-tracking
- Job location tracking
- Productivity tracking
- Inventory management
- Real-time communication with customers
- Real-time communication with team members
- And much more
All these features can help make it easier for you to manage and monitor your field service team regardless of how far from the office they are.
2. Ensure Improved Communication
As a manager, your job is to act as the coordinator of the team. It is your job to make sure that the individual members of the team collaborate for efficient service delivery. A field service team will of course not be enclosed in a single room working towards a common goal. Maintaining collaboration in a team that is out there in the field requires effective and efficient communication. With that in mind, if you want to effectively manage such a team, you need to make sure communication between you as the manager and the team members is top-notch. Communication makes every member comfortable with each other and the management as well which in the end makes the execution of tasks more effective.
3. Have Clearly-Defined Operation Protocol in Place
As a team with common goals, you have procedures you follow in service delivery. As a manager, you are tasked with making sure any delivered service should adhere to that protocol. To make this possible, every member of the team needs to clearly understand every relevant procedure. This reduces the amount of work you have to do as a manager and also increases the effectiveness of work execution. As a way of enhancing this, make sure that every member has access to this information from anywhere they are. This promotes service delivery in general.
4. Always Have a Back-Up Plan
Optimizing your service operations can improve customer satisfaction, save time, and minimize your scheduling headaches. One of the ways to do this is to be prepared with a backup plan in case anything goes wrong. For instance, you could consider having some members of the entire team on standby in case the ones in the field fail to deliver. This means conducting thorough research on the current demand of your services to balance it with your capacity. It also means being on the lookout when demand is on the rise so you know when to bring in the new force in case of delays. This helps improve efficiency for your team and the company at large.
In a field service business, the last thing you want is to violate contracts or consistently fail to meet the agreed deadlines between you and your customers. Keeping your customers waiting shows a lack of proper team management, which can be detrimental to the organization in the long run. Thankfully, the few tips above should help improve your team’s productivity and company performance.