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Community Manager
Community Manager

Field Service Trends, Innovations & Research: 2016 Review and Look Forward to 2017

As we wind down from holiday celebrations in the last hours of 2016, it’s helpful to look back at our body of work this year, as well as the accomplishments, goals, challenges, successes and failures. Here at ServiceMax, we are always looking at important data from analysts and field service surveys to plan for what comes next for the industry. What did we find out in 2016? What does 2017 have to offer in the world of field service?


Workforce Changes:

Field service will remain a people business in the new year, even accounting for the impact of the Internet of Things (IoT). Customers will still expect a trained and knowledgable professional to show up at their door when something breaks. For so many of our customers, the field servie technician remains the face of the company for years after the initial sale. However, with retiring talent and the consistent need to update skill sets, it’s becoming a challenge to maintain a strong service team. We now see some organizations turning to freelancers to substitute their full-time workforce.

New Technologies

Regardless of who’s doing the work, the job responsibilities are evolving more and more. Service can now involve leveraging mobile and social platforms, augmented reality devices, and the Internet of Thing. Nearly every service organization is looking at these tools, and thinking about where they might fit into their future. In a webinar with Bryan Coddington, Vice President of Cloud Technology at USDM Life Sciences, he explains how field service systems are evolving, and which emerging technologies are in the future for medical device field service teams.

Internet of Things in 2016:

Even though 2017 is right around the corner, wrapping up 2016 is not just about preparing for the future, but reflecting on the 12-months that have passed.

This year saw how the Internet of Things can be a game changer. If you are promising your clients quality, proactive service, our 2016 blog explores how, IoT provides new tools and helps teams deliver with a combination of automated alerts and ticket creation, real-time data, proximity-based alerts and predictive maintenance.

At the start of 2016,  Aly Pinder, Jr. surveyed over 200 service and manufacturing organizations and found, among other insights, that compared to the industry average, top-performing companies are 50 percent more likely to dispatch service techs based on automated remote data. This Aberdeen Research report shows how the Internet of Things is clearly revolutionizing the world of maintenance service and creating opportunities for the future.

Research on Field Service: Coming Soon!

Research that centers on surveys of service organizations is always valuable to the informed field service technologist and strategist. In April 2016, according to an independent study from Vanson Bourne, commissioned by ServiceMax, almost all (96%) of the IT and field service decision makers surveyed report that their organization could see gains through the adoption of connected devices or sensors.

So while you may be seeing the benefits of IoT, your competitor probably is too. In early 2017, we will introduce a new research report that reflects the most recent data from field service organizations.

  • What is the impact of your field service technology?

  • How does it compare to others?

Keep an eye out here on the ServiceMax Community for the latest research on the impact and KPIs of successful field service organizations.

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