Chapter 6

General Perception of Maturity of Customer-Centric Driven Technologies Amongst Field Service Companies

In the previous section of this report, we have seen widespread adoption of technologies and tools used by field service companies to drive customer satisfaction levels.

However, what is the industry sentiment with regards to the maturity of technology being used? In the next section of questions within the study, we focused on understanding how our respondents perceived the maturity of their technology adoption within their organisation and how they saw their industry verticals.

In this section of the study, the first question we asked was if our respondents would say their organisation is technologically advanced compared to others within their industry.

The majority of companies (52%) saw themselves as being on par with most competitors. However, a third (33%) of companies felt they were ahead of their competition in this regard. In comparison, just over a tenth (13%) of companies thought they were behind their competition in terms of technology.

We asked our respondents if they felt that their industry was technologically advanced compared to other service-focused industries.

Here, on the industry level, we saw even greater confidence in the maturity of technology, with over half of the respondents (51%) stating that they felt their industry was technologically advanced compared to just under a quarter (24%) of companies saying that they felt their industry was about average in terms of technology adoption. A similar amount (23%) felt that their industry was behind other sectors.

Interestingly, when we look at the core technologies employed for field service management, there appears to be a baseline maturity of technology adoption amongst field service organisations.

Technologies used by more than 50% of field service companies within the study

Indeed, the following technologies were being used by at least half of all field service companies within our study; Mobile applications (65%), Scheduling Systems (64%), Real-time analytics and dashboards (53%), Remote assistance capabilities (51%), Dedicated FSM system (50%).

The study findings appear to corroborate what many in the field service sector have believed for some time - we are now approaching a point of widespread adoption of fundamental technologies. The investment in technology has now moved beyond the first iteration of evolution in our sector and into a new wave of technological advancement.

One way of describing this could be that we have moved through a period of digitalisation whereby we brought automation and connectivity into manual processes to drive efficiencies, into a period of true digital transformation where we are seeing technology change our perception of what is possible.

The adoption of connected assets via the Internet of Things (IoT) is perhaps the most mature aspect of this new wave of innovation and thinking followed by subsequent technologies that open up more possibilities based on, and capable of leveraging, the vast volumes of data that IoT creates. Artificial Intelligence (AI), Robotic Process Automation (RPA), and Augmented Reality (AR) technologies are beginning to gain traction as that shift continues.