Field service businesses can look to balance customer service with operational efficiency and cost though setting and measuring Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s). However, this is not as simple as it sounds, considering:
75% of field service organizations do not effectively measure their KPIs and 27% of those do not use KPIs at all.
The problem many businesses face is that, with so many possible KPIs to choose from, it can be daunting knowing which KPI’s they should be measuring in order to identify where improvements in the business are needed.
Trimble recently ran a benchmarking survey with field service managers on the topic of KPIs. We asked a range of questions from what field service organizations perceive to be the top most important KPIs to how they use KPIs to inform business decision making, that’s if they use KPIs at all. Without this insight, how can you make decisions which enhance business productivity, cost efficiency and create loyal customers? Essentially, you can’t manage what you don’t measure.
The Survey Results: How Do You Compare?
In previous surveys, First-Time Fix Rates was the top most important KPI. However, in our recent survey Customer Satisfaction takes the number one spot. This is not surprising considering that field service management is becoming increasingly competitive and driving the competitive edge are satisfied customers. In fact, First-Time Fix Rates narrowly misses out on the Top 3 altogether. Customer Satisfaction, Technician Productivity (number of completed jobs) and Technician Utilization were voted the most important KPIs for field service organization to measure.
What do you do with your field service KPI’s?
While measuring KPIs is important, it is what you do with the data that matters. Effectively leveraging data to gain useful insights from the field will significantly improve business decision making. However, of those who use field service data, only 12% were confident in how effective they were at using KPIs within their organization. This is not surprising considering many organizations struggle with how to get started with reporting. Indeed, 27% said that they had never reported KPIs at all.
Amongst the 12% of organizations who use KPIs, strategic planning, operational decision support and trend analysis were the top uses and was of most interest to General Managers, Operational Managers and Field Service Managers. Trend analysis and strategic planning form part of long term business decision making to help achieve broader goals and objectives. KPIs when used for operational decision support provide insight into the day-to-day operations which allow for field service managers to make effective and efficient on-the-spot decisions.
Setting up an effective KPI program
A mistake many organizations make when setting up a KPI program is to try and measure too many things, which can make capturing the data expensive and time consuming and make it difficult to create action plans that drive improvement.
A successful KPI program will ensure that metrics are relevant, accessible and actionable. This will ensure that your business is able to concentrate on the activities that are going to have the highest impact.
- Do your KPIs align to business objectives?
- What improvements do you want to make?
- What are the most important KPIs to measure to drive forward improvement?
- Who is most interested in your KPIs?
- Is the data readily available and understandable?
- Do the KPIs pinpoint exactly what change will lead to the outcome you’re trying to create?
Essentially, you cannot improve on what is not already being measured. Identifying KPIs, measuring them and setting goals for improving them will reap rewards for any service operation.
To find out how to successfully set up and run a KPI program and for the Trimble’s full survey results, download the Field Service Metrics Quick Guide.