Field service management technology is transforming. Today, field service businesses already rely on advancements such as AI scheduling and integration with the Internet of Things. But what is around the corner maybe even more revolutionary.
Achievements in virtual reality may soon mean that you can guide your customers through simple troubleshooting without dispatching a technician for every small diagnostic and minor fix.
So, if you want to keep up with increasing customer expectations, you must stay up-to-date on the newest technology and learn how to adopt it quickly and efficiently.
Improving Your Technology Adoption Process
When it is time to introduce technology into your business, you do not want to spring it on your team and assume it will work out. Instead, you need to have a plan. So here we look at seven ways to promote technology adoption.
1. Create a Change Management System
Since technology is constantly advancing, businesses need a change management system in place to implement structured change without throwing their processes and procedures into a tailspin. That way, you are not starting from scratch with every slight shift.
When you design your business to accept and accelerate new technology into your workflows, you insulate yourself against shifting industry demands. With a change management system, your team knows exactly what to expect, so it removes a layer of anxiety from the process—making them more receptive to the change.
2. Select User-Friendly Technology
The success of your technology adoption hinges on selecting the right technology. If you make the wrong choice and have to force the change, you will double your struggle from the beginning. So instead, you have to choose user-friendly technology that makes sense for your business.
When you are searching for technology, you want to consider things like:
- What does the onboarding process look like?
- How long does it typically take?
- Is there any support offered during the process?
As you go through the product demonstration, you will want to think about how the different parts of the technology will apply to your team's daily activities and if the changes will improve their working experience.
Ultimately, you want to feel like the technology serves your business, not the other way around.
3. Provide Product Education
Signing on for new technology is exciting. You know it will save your team countless hours, so you want to deploy it immediately.
But first, you need to educate your team. They need a chance to understand how the technology will impact their workflows and how it is an upgrade from the current process.
After all, they were not a part of the demonstrations and buying decisions, so they are still in the dark.
Start by holding an information session where you can introduce the functionality and answer questions. By providing education prior to the change, you limit the number of questions and frustrations you will encounter during training, allowing it to run smoothly.
4. Establish Progressive Training
Once it is time to roll out your field service management technology, you need to provide continuing training until everyone feels comfortable.
In some instances, it might make sense to adopt processes one step at a time. For example, you can allow field service technicians to get familiar with adding notes, photos, and videos directly to job records from their mobile before introducing more advanced workflows, such as contract and invoice management.
By providing step-by-step training, you ensure that your team understands the full functionality of the technology without overwhelming or confusing them, making it easier to get on board.
5. Set Up Feedback Loops
As you make the change, it is essential that you have feedback loops. You want to make sure that your team has an opportunity to ask questions and make suggestions along the way.
Sometimes, there is an easy fix to a common concern, but you cannot implement it if it is never brought to your attention.
The easier it is for your field service technicians and other teams to get their questions answered, the more feedback you will receive. So, whether you establish a dedicated communication channel or recurring weekly meetings to gather and respond to feedback, you want to encourage your team to share their thoughts, questions, and concerns openly and honestly.
6. Utilize Support
Once you are using your technology in the field outside of the training environment, the last thing your technicians want is to be left waiting for help. After all, they cannot stall job progress when it takes days for a support ticket to be answered.
That is why the technology you choose must offer ongoing, accessible, fast, and accurate support.
Ideally, you want to choose a platform that offers around-the-clock support from trusted professionals. Or, at minimum, the support availability must match your hours of operation, which for some field services often includes evenings and weekends.
7. Craft a Culture of Adoption
Sometimes, you will find pushback during new technology adoption, even with the most refined change management practices, education, and training. It is normal for people to be hesitant to change. However, customer expectations are only going to progress, so changes are inevitable.
Businesses must do their best to create a company culture of change. To motivate your team to get on board, you reward your early adopters and incentivize them to share tips with others. The more you can reinforce the benefits of upgrading your procedures, the better.
Then, as you hire, focus on finding and training talent that demonstrates they are receptive to change from the beginning.
Remember, businesses with an established change management process can deploy new technology more quickly—meaning they are equipped to keep up with shifting customer expectations at scale.
This post was inspired by Zuper FM’s Here’s What You Need to Know About the Field Service Management Industry with David Nour and Michael Israel. Listen here now.