Author Archives: Janice Camacho

  1. The Next Normal: How can Service Orgs Succeed in a Time of Inflation, Labor Shortages, and a Workforce Skills Gap?

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    Service organizations have been battling constant change. COVID-19 continues to impact everything from supply chains to labor, and now the industry is contending with another challenge: economic uncertainty. Aquant’s 2023 Service Intelligence Benchmark Report analyzed how factors like inflation, a labor shortage, and a knowledge gap are impacting the service industry.

    Take a look at this year’s data and highlights to learn more. 

    Our analysis encompasses data from:

    • 113 organizations, including service divisions within OEMs and third-party service organizations across manufacturing, medical devices, capital equipment, HVAC, commercial appliances, and more
    • More than 16.2 million work orders
    • Nearly 125,000 technicians
    • Over $8.1 billion total in service costs
    • An average of 3.8 years of service data per company

    This year, we learned:

    1. Service is picking up again. With a 5% increase in field events and a 3% increase in the number of technicians in the field, service is experiencing a post-pandemic uptick. Mean Time Between Events has also increased by 32%, indicating that orgs are utilizing remote and self-service solutions. First Time Fix Rates are even up 2.3% since last year. 
    2. But organizations are not safe from inflation’s impact. Even with a general uptick in service outcomes, rising prices are diminishing economic gains. Service costs shot up 7% in comparison to the previous year due to rising parts costs, supply chain shortages, and more. 
    3. Even with slightly-reduced costs between service heroes and challengers, the knowledge gap still affects orgs significantly. More-tenured technicians are retiring faster than their replacements can enter the workforce—so the challenge is to upskill less-experienced workers quickly. On average, bottom performers cost organizations 67% more than top performers. In addition, the variance between top- and bottom-ranking companies has increased. The bottom line? Companies need to pay attention to the skills gap more than ever. If everyone had the knowledge and skills to perform like the top 20% of the workforce, service costs would be reduced by 21%
    4. Service organizations can’t control parts costs or inflation, but they can focus on areas within their control, like managing their workforce’s performance. With the correct tools under their belt, organizations can prioritize:
    • Closing the skills gap by hiring new techs and getting them ramped up faster. 
    • Reducing parts shotgunning by determining the best and most cost-effective part for the fix.
    • Solving equipment failures on the first visit — as opposed to making quick, short-term fixes that address symptoms but not the root cause.
    • Adopting a laser-focused approach to spending by reallocating resources and cutting costs where necessary. 

    So, is it possible to set your organization up for success?

    The short answer? A resounding yes! 

    In fact, companies that embrace data-backed approaches are ensuring a path to success—especially because these insights allow them to measure every part of their workforce’s performance. They are able to see the entirety of their business model, take stock of what’s working, and make adjustments where necessary to preserve costs. Successful organizations are able to leverage technology to make the right fixes the first time around, utilize the right parts for a fix (which keeps costs low!), and allocate their resources appropriately. If service organizations hesitate to make changes now, they are risking greater economic impact in the long term. 

    Ready to understand your business on a much deeper level? Read Aquant’s 2023 Benchmark Report to get an understanding of the state of today’s service industry and how your organization stacks up in comparison.

  2. The 5 Most Actionable Field Service Reports of 2022 (With Interactive Examples!)

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    Not having enough data is problematic. But swimming in data without actionable reports isn’t ideal, either. 

    Service leaders and managers have no shortage of reports and dashboards. The challenging part is turning those dashboards into field service reports that drive action and clearly communicate high-impact priorities. That way, they can focus on tasks that keep their customers happy and their workforce focused. 

    To help, we’re sharing five interactive and actionable field service reports below. We’re also showing you exactly how to turn those reports into your secret weapon for improving efficiency. 

    Here’s what we’ll cover: 

    1. Customer Risk Score 
    2. Common Failures
    3. Workforce Analysis
    4. Industry Benchmarks Report
    5. Bonus! Automated Executive Summary Emails

    Read on to level up.

    Customer Risk Score Report

    Why it’s actionable 

    The best time to stop customer escalations? Before they begin. 

    A Customer Risk Score report captures activities and costs that may lead to unhappy customers. When used strategically, it can help you prevent escalations, improve contract margins, and create visibility and transparency into uptime and overall performance. 

    Customer Risk Score reporting combines First Time Fix rates, cost per success, mean time to resolution, mean time between events, and the number of assets in the field to immediately highlight problem areas.

    How to use the Customer Risk Score report

    We recommend reviewing customer risk score reporting once per week to stay on top of potential escalations and take action to get customers back on track. Over time, you’ll be able to create a systematic approach to selecting the customers you check in on each week. 

    We also recommend scheduling a weekly meeting with service teams to review the report, schedule calls with customers that are at risk of escalations, and document all feedback.

    Share this report with…

    Members of your customer success, sales, and field ops teams so they can take necessary actions quickly. We recommend sharing it with your leadership and finance teams as well to understand potential impacts on your contract renewal pipeline.

     

    Common Failures Report

    Why it’s actionable 

    A common failures report shows you the most frequent customer issues that arise, sorted by product type. It also highlights which service technicians, teams, and regions are driving the highest costs when these failures need to be repaired.

    This report lets service leaders apply Pareto principles to focus on the top issues impacting uptime so they can hone in on ways to reduce cost variability in solving them. This report will almost always identify your most impactful training opportunities. 

    How to use the Common Failures report

    Improve margins, customer retention, total cost of ownership, and reduce warranty costs by taking an intentional approach to this report.

    We recommend reviewing the top failures, then sorting them by teams and individuals. From here, you can identify the scope of the issue, create a training plan, and present it alongside the report to drive buy-in across your team and with management. 

    Share it with…

    Regional field service managers and customer success teams to understand likely causes for issues in the field. Quality assurance and R&D should also see this report to understand where they may need to prioritize product improvements.

     

    Workforce Analysis Reports

    Why it’s actionable 

    This is your go-to report to understand exactly how well your team is performing in the field. It details major KPI indicators by technician and displays variability for each. 

    Use it to sort individual technicians and teams by their KPIs, including workforce performance index, first-time fix, cost per success, mean time to resolution, and mean time between events. Then, view training needs, which can be sorted by the greatest opportunity to improve. 

    How to use the Workforce Analysis report

    Based on specific KPI observations from this report, sort your technicians and teams by each KPI to identify weak areas and prioritize the most impactful training opportunities.

    These reports surface trainable instances like parts shotgunning, customer escalations or losses that are directly tied to tech performance, margin erosion at the tech level, and brand tarnish. 

    Share it with…

    Team leaders and regional managers so they can identify the technicians that need the most support.

     

    Benchmarks Report

    Why it’s actionable 

    If you want to understand how you’re performing in the market, this is the report you need. Industry benchmarks help you understand what “best-in-class” looks like so you can set goals with your team and put effort into the areas that are most important to helping you improve.

    Using this data, you can set goals at the organizational and team levels that are specific, measurable, and attainable. 

    How to use the Benchmarks Report

    Use this report to identify your company’s “North Star Metrics” — ones that will lead to breakthrough performance. Then, put training plans into place at the KPI level to avoid complacency and work towards continued improvements, quarter after quarter and year after year. 

    Share it with… 

    Leadership to show high-level performance, managers to help them understand their teams’ position in the market, and customers to show your company’s stand-out service performance. Click here to download the 2022 Field Service Benchmarks Report.

     

    Executive Summary

    Why it’s actionable 

    An Executive Summary is delivered directly to your inbox each week and helps create a habit of regularly reviewing performance data. It surfaces top priorities and provides you with clear opportunities by potential impact so you can avoid emotion-driven decision-making. 

    How to use the Executive Summary 

    Use it to encourage action and accountability. Managers and directors should use their personalized recommendations to set priorities for the coming week. They can review opportunities that present the greatest improvements to efficiency and cost.

    As improvements are made, this report serves as proof that countermeasures were effective. If improvements are not made, the report will stay the same. 

    Share it with… 

    Directors and managers to help them drive organizational alignment so everyone is moving in the same direction. 

     

    The Next Step

    The right reports can take you from “too much data” to “just the right insights.” By making strategic use of the reports above, you’ll be well on your way to driving meaningful improvements — no data science or IT expertise required. 

    Service Intelligence Platforms like Aquant’s make it easy for service leaders and their teams to know which actions to take next. Sign up for a demo of our Service Intelligence Platform today to start turning your data into answers.