I’m very conscious of two things in business today.
The first is how tough the modern service environment is. We’re probably all familiar with demanding customers who want ever better service at lower cost and in many companies this service needs to be delivered whilst responding to internal pressures for higher profits.
The second is just how much technology there is out there promising to improve the operations of service organisations.
But in all too many cases, businesses have found that though their service technology investments have delivered a positive return, they have fallen far short of expectations.
For this reason we’ve been exploring what technologies are best adopted and how they should be deployed to rapidly deliver benefits and enable an organisation to continuously improve.
From our research it’s clear that there are three key areas to focus on:
- mobilisation – the deployment of mobile technologies to automate previously inefficient manual processes and support workers in the field
- optimisation – the use of intelligent or dynamic scheduling engines to automatically allocate workers to jobs and adjust the schedule based on changes in the field
- synchronisation – the use of performance management solutions to balance the different aspects of the service operation and align the workforce with the organisation’s strategic objectives
In terms of deployment we recommend an approach which links together these three areas in a cycle of continuous iteration rather than the more typical (but less successful) approach of mobilise then optimise.