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Field Service Lightning Implementation For Optimized Customer Service

August 14, 2023 eye-glyph 78

Table of Contents

    If you are still using traditional systems to manage your field service agents, you are missing out on a smarter and better way to do it. Salesforce Field Service Lightning is the solution you need.

    Whether you provide installation, repair, or maintenance services for water purifiers, solar panels, cars, TVs, ACs, or any other appliances, you know that your customers expect high-quality service from you. And you require a strong field service management system that can assist you in providing that.

    The need for a robust field service management system that streamlines and stabilizes the management of customers and field agents is unavoidable.

    To cater to this crucial need, Salesforce brought Field Service Lightning into the picture. And how this tool simplifies everything from receiving a request of service the post-service support.

    Want to know more? Read this blog and find out how Salesforce Field Service Lightning can make your life easier.

    An Overview of Salesforce Field Service Lightning

    Imagine having a unified platform for controlling and managing all your field operations, simultaneously keeping all the involved parties in the loop.

    What is Salesforce Field Service Lightning

    This is what Salesforce Field Service Lightning is.

    Field Service Lightning (FSL) is a Salesforce product that enables companies to manage their field service operations efficiently.

    As a cloud platform, FSL offers a comprehensive solution for all the activities involved in field service management, like scheduling, dispatching, tracking, and reporting. It also provides field technicians mobile access to product data, service request details, and customer information.

    You can integrate FSL with other Salesforce products like Salesforce Service Cloud, Sales Cloud, and IoT Cloud to deliver consistent customer services across all devices and channels.

    Why Field Service Lightning?

    While running your operations that include rigorous field service management brings out several challenges and an upfront need for a platform that not only eliminates those challenges but provides you with a permanent solution.

    Here is the list of some challenges that Field Service Lightning:

    • Tasks like installations and repairs were managed manually via spreadsheets and phone calls, putting a question mark on efficiency and hindering the scope of scalability.
    • Real-time tracking of field technicians has been such a task, and with limited visibility and control over productivity and activities, it’s more complicated.
    • Fragmented data across various systems leads to significant efficiency loss, especially for service managers overseeing work orders, inventory management, technician schedules, and escalations.
    • Disorganized data and reliance on tedious paperwork hinder the ability to gain actionable insights from field service operations.
    • Completing documents and forms by technicians after each field visit to generate service reports is prone to errors and often lacks essential information.

    Now check how Salesforce Field Service Lightning solves all these setbacks:

    Salesforce Field Service Lightning Features

    Field Service Lightning provides a range of features and functionalities designed to enhance service delivery and improve customer satisfaction:

    field service lightning features

    1. Work Order Management

    Field Service Lightning allows organizations to create and manage work orders efficiently. It enables the scheduling, tracking, and assignment of work orders to field technicians. Work order details, including customer information, service requirements, and location, can be easily accessed and updated.

    2. Resource Scheduling

    With Field Service Lightning, businesses can optimize the allocation of field technicians based on their availability, skills, and proximity to service locations. The intelligent scheduling system takes into account various factors like technician skills, location, workload, and SLAs (Service Level Agreements) to ensure efficient resource allocation.

    3. Mobile Access and Offline Functionality

    With Field Service Lightning, businesses can optimize the allocation of field technicians based on availability, skills, and proximity to service locations. The intelligent scheduling system considers technician skills, location, workload, and SLAs (Service Level Agreements) to ensure efficient resource allocation.

    4. Knowledge Base and Collaboration

    Field Service Lightning includes a knowledge base that provides technicians access to relevant documentation, manuals, and troubleshooting guides. This feature enables technicians to resolve issues more effectively and efficiently. Additionally, it facilitates collaboration and knowledge sharing among the field service team.

    5. Service Contracts and SLA Management

    Field Service Lightning allows businesses to manage service contracts and Service Level Agreements (SLAs) effectively. It enables organizations to define contract terms, entitlements, and service levels, ensuring technicians adhere to the specified response and resolution times. SLA violations can be tracked and escalated for prompt resolution.

    6. Inventory Management

    The solution offers inventory management features, enabling businesses to monitor and control their service parts and stock levels. Technicians can request parts, check availability, and update inventory in real time, ensuring they have the resources to efficiently complete service tasks.

    7. Reporting and Analytics

    Field Service Lightning provides powerful reporting and analytics features that reveal field service performance and operations. Managers can view dashboards and reports to measure key metrics, track technician efficiency, detect issues, and make informed decisions to improve service delivery.

    8. Real-time Updates and Notifications

    FSL enables real-time updates and notifications to keep field technicians and back-office teams informed. This includes automatic notifications of schedule changes, work order updates, and alerts for urgent or high-priority tasks.

    9. Integration with other Salesforce Products

    Field Service Lightning connects with other Salesforce products, such as Sales Cloud and Service Cloud. This connection allows seamless data transfer across different departments, offering a consolidated view of customer information, service history, and sales opportunities.

    Who uses FSL?

    The major users of Field Service Lightning are the companies that offer field services like installation, maintenance, inspection, repair, delivery, etc., for their customers.

    Also, companies with internal field service requirements, such as facilities management, inventory management, IT support, etc., are using FSL.

    Companies of any size and industry can utilize the capabilities of FSL as it allows you to customize and scale the operations and meet different business needs. Some examples of industries that use FSL are manufacturing, utilities, healthcare, telecommunications, home services, and energy.

    salesforce implementation partner

    Stats & Industries Showing the Significance of FSL

    Take a good look at these stats from research conducted in North America:

    • 52% of organizations are still working and assigning field service tasks using manual methods
    • And 48% of organizations have shifted this job to Field Service Management software.
    • Still, 38% of Service Technicians can’t access all the required information.
    • According to the research results, 72% of organizations prioritize improving customer experience by efficiently using field service management software.

    Let’s discuss all the industries using FSL and the reasons why they end up choosing it:

    Healthcare

    How Piedmont Healthcare, Johnson & Johnson, Bayer & Roche, like healthcare service providers, improved inefficient home visits, reduce the unavailability of information, and strengthen communications for all parties involved?

    Through FSL, healthcare companies are able to reach patients who couldn’t get medical facilities with reliable, efficient services. They can now schedule and dispatch medical staff and equipment, track health status, and monitor service history on mobile devices.

    Financial Services

    Are financial companies delivering personalized and professional service to their customers when it comes to helping them with financial decision-making?

    Financial companies benefit from delivering personalized and professional customer service through Financial Advisor. Field Service Lightning (FSL) streamlines in-person conversations, ensuring expert guidance for smart and informed financial decisions.

    Top companies like American Express, Western Union, USAA, and Bank of America utilize FSL’s comprehensive functionalities to arrange face-to-face meetings with qualified experts. This allows smooth access to customer information and product data on the move, improving customer satisfaction and successful conversions.

    Manufacturing and Automobiles

    Do you know Manufacturing and Automotive companies like Tesla, Caterpillar, KONE, Toyota, etc., have streamlined their field service management using FSL?

    Be it customer satisfaction, better connectivity with partners or employees, optimization of service delivery, or enhancement in data quality and accuracy, Field Service Lightning has proven itself as one of the highly considered platforms for managing field jobs. Timely and effective services will make any customer happy.

    What these companies are doing with FSL?: Creating and managing work orders, service appointments, resources, inventory, and optimization requests from a web app, completing service tasks, generating invoices, and collecting feedback from their mobile devices.

    Retail

    How can retail companies like Target, Best Buy, and Home Depot boost customer loyalty and retention with fast and accurate service?

    According to Enlyft, 1,480 companies use Salesforce Field Service Lightning (FSL) to streamline their service operations. FSL helps them schedule and dispatch delivery staff or service technicians to customers’ locations and access customer preferences, product information, and inventory items from their mobile devices.

    FSL enables them to connect customers, devices, agents, dispatchers, and field employees on one platform. This way, they can deliver exceptional on-site service and enhance customer satisfaction.

    Telecommunications

    How can telecommunications companies like Verizon, AT&T, BT (British Telecom), and Vodafone improve their network quality and performance, especially for field services?

    According to Apps Associates, Field Service Lightning (FSL) is a solution that helps optimize field service operations across several industries, including telecommunications. FSL enables them to schedule and dispatch network engineers or technicians to the network sites and access network status, product information, and knowledge articles from their mobile devices.

    FSL also allows them to communicate with dispatchers and update records on the go. This way, they can provide proactive and preventive service for their network infrastructure and equipment, ensuring better network reliability and customer satisfaction.

    Enlyft data shows 1,480 US companies use Salesforce Field Service Lightning. They are 78% of global users, mostly in IT services, with >10K employees and >$1B revenue.

    Now, walk through how to start with Salesforce Field Service Lightning.

    Steps to Implement Salesforce Field Service Lightning

    Steps to activate Field Service in Salesforce

    field service lightning implementation steps

    1. To activate Field Service, follow these steps:
    Go to Setup and type Field Service Settings in the Quick Find box. Then click on Field Service Settings.

    activate Field Service in Salesforce

    Field Service Settings

    2. Install the Field Service Managed Package
    This package gives you access to the dispatcher console, scheduling tools, various custom objects, and Guided Setup.

    Click on this link https://fsl.secure.force.com/install
    Select Install for Admins Only, then click Install.

    Install the Field Service Managed Package

    Now when you go to the app launcher you can see the two apps.

    The Field Service Admin app lets admins customize the managed package, manage scheduling and optimization, and use the dispatcher console.

    With the Field Service app, dispatchers can easily see and manage a flawless service schedule.

    customize the managed package

    The app includes these objects:

    Work Order: This is the primary object in a field service application, which contains all the information related to a service request, including customer details, service location, service type, assigned technician, and other related information.

    Technician: This object represents the field service technician or engineer assigned to perform the service work. It includes the technician’s contact details, availability, and skills.

    Asset: This object represents the equipment or assets that require any kind of repair, maintenance, or service. It includes the asset’s serial number, warranty information, and maintenance history.

    Inventory: This object represents the inventory or spare parts required to complete the service work. It includes information such as the inventory item’s description, quantity, and location.

    Service Agreement: This object represents the contract or service agreement between the customer and the business offering service. It includes the service level agreement (SLA), contract terms, and billing details.

    Schedule: This object represents the schedule for the service work, including the service date and time, the technician assigned, and any other related details.

    These objects work together to help field service organizations manage and execute service requests efficiently and effectively.

    Salesforce Field Service Lightning Implementation: Best Practices

    It is important to do things, but doing them right and fast in fewer attempts is more important. Before you implement Salesforce Field Service Lightning, follow these best practices to make sure your implementation is successful:

    field service lightning implementation - best practices

    Outline your customer’s journey

    Using Salesforce FSL software, create customer journey maps to pinpoint pain points and optimize the field service process. Respect customer time and design a simple, effective model for a superior experience. Employ process flow diagrams to ensure clarity and alignment among all stakeholders. Leverage relevant FSL features based on the customer journey map for an ideal business model.

    Map out the entire journey of a field service agent

    Like the customer journey, the service agent aims to keep the team aligned. A misaligned field service team can ruin a great outcome. Happy employees make happy customers, so you should also satisfy your field service agents. Research shows that companies with happy employees earn 147% more per share than rivals.

    Create a mobile-first strategy

    The future of field service is mobile. Native mobile experiences leverage phone features like cameras and maps, making work as easy as personal life. The Salesforce field service mobile app empowers agents to work on the go and adapt to any situation. They can stay on top of their tasks with alerts, insights, articles, and metrics that matter. They can swiftly diagnose and fix service issues or outages, collaborate with teams, and launch remediation actions from the FSL mobile app.

    Build Key Performance Metrics (KPI)

    Choose KPIs that match your goals and FSL product features that help you achieve them. Use FSL performance analytics to help service providers, such as stakeholders, experts, field agents, owners, and executives, make better and faster decisions. Make sure your key metrics follow the SMART criteria (specific, measurable, acceptable, realistic, and time-based). You get what you measure, so begin with these key metrics at the project start to ensure alignment in the architectural decision.

    And there are more things to consider. An expert who has implemented Salesforce Field Service Lightning for various kinds of businesses can advise you better on the rest of the requirements.

    Benefits of using Field Service Lightning

    Here are some advantages of using Salesforce Field Service Lightning:

    benefits of fsl

    1. Seamless Tracking of Field Service

    FSL enables integrated work orders that cover accounts, assets, cases, contracts, entitlements, and service contracts. This helps create and execute work orders in an organized way for different industries, such as solar panel manufacturers or cable services companies. FSL ensures smooth service operations through seamless tracking of fieldwork.

    2. Preventive Maintenance of Assets

    FSL detects parts of assets that need repair before they break down using the Advanced Assets feature. The asset hierarchy feature helps track customer products and shows products with multiple parts in one view. This preventive maintenance approach improves service speed and quality, satisfying customers.

    3. Hassle-free Scheduling and Dispatch

    FSL’s Lightning Console allows easy booking of service appointments and automatic assignment of mobile resources based on location, time, and skills. In urgent situations like emergencies at solar-powered factories, FSL enables quick problem-solving by dispatching the closest field engineer without delay.

    4. Efficient Mobile Management System

    Salesforce Field Lightning’s Dispatcher Console allows managers to manage mobile operations, handle alerts quickly, easily schedule bulk jobs, and monitor mobile resources in real-time. This efficient mobile management system ensures timely actions and enhances overall field service performance.

    Enough of theory and boasting about how Field Service helps businesses. Time to take things real with some real-time work cases:

    Real-world examples of Field Service Cloud Implementation

    Case 1: Tick-tack-toe between Agents, Customers, and Supplies of Inventory & Good Services

    This example concerns a business that deals in complete glass repair, replacement, and services to the residential, automotive, and commercial markets. They provide services that suit the needs of vehicle owners, homeowners, and business owners, and they deliver them quickly and within the budget.

    They aim to appreciate and understand customers’ needs and make the best efforts to strive for customer loyalty.

    Problems faced:

    • Monitoring the work of their field agents – One of the problems they faced was monitoring their field agents’ work at the customer’s location. They often received complaints from customers for the poor quality of services by the agents.
    • Responding to Service Request – Each time they received a service request, they had to manually find and assign the right agent from their database. It led to a delay in responding to customers’ requests.
    • Unavailability of a System to manage assets – A solution was needed to ensure the agents were equipped with the required supplies and meet customer needs at any time.
    • Assigning the right agent for the job – They struggled to schedule appointments that suited the customer and the service agents. Often, they got repeated booking requests from their customers.

    Solution Offered:

    For challenges like this, Salesforce FSL had just the right solution for them, allowing them to easily manage their asset and agents:

    • Effective workflow management – The work order management implementation helped create work orders for the service agents and track their work in the field. These work orders are further connected with contact, accounts, service contracts, etc.
    • Automatic assignment of field agents – Next, field service lightning’s schedule and dispatch feature in the lightning console eases the instant booking appointment process. This feature automatically assigns the right agent to a service depending on location, time, and skills.
    • Management & tracking of the assets – The inventory management feature of field service lighting was used to identify asset parts that needed repair. This feature helped the client to track customers’ products and design an asset hierarchy to view products with multiple parts on one screen.
    • Improved Agents Appointment Process – The Dispatcher console automatically distributed the service appointments among the service agents, helping with client management and scheduling appointments, tracking and monitoring the service agents in real-time.

    Result: Our efforts have led to

    • 80% Decrease in Service request response time
    • 75% Increase in the efficiency of agents
    • 70% Improvement in Customer satisfaction

    Case 2: Inefficient and Inaccurate Service Operations

    Another case concerns a company known as a leader in enterprise video communication. They offer a platform that is simple and dependable for video and audio conferencing, collaboration, chat, and webinars on different devices and systems.

    Likewise, every other business out there aims to foster seamless teamwork and productivity among different businesses and organizations.

    Challenge faced

    • Scheduling the appointments – Their dispatcher team used google calendar to schedule appointments, but it had poor visibility and authorization issues. It took them hours to schedule one appointment, and they often overbooked or underutilized their resources.
    • No proper system to manage details – They used MS Excel to track installation details, but it lacked a checklist for the installation team. The other teams had difficulty accessing the on-site data.
    • Long time in reporting – They spent 5-6 hours weekly reporting to their management team, wasting time and resources.

    Solution Offered

    To overcome these challenges, we offered them the following solutions, which brought the expected outcomes:

    • Effective management of resource scheduling – The Gantt chart feature of Salesforce field service lightning enabled dispatchers to quickly and accurately assign resources, avoiding double booking. They gained clear visibility into the status of each project and improved appointment booking.
    • Planning of the installation projects – The Milestone PM+ feature of Salesforce helped project managers plan installation projects from start to finish. It helped technicians track appointments, record on-site work, and complete checklists.
    • Better visibility into the data – Completing data on-site generated real-time visibility into projects for dispatchers and real-time reporting for management. Real-time reporting helped them measure and improve their team’s performance.

    Result: Our efforts have led to

    • 60% increase in the accuracy of data
    • 85% time decrease in reporting
    • 80% reduction in scheduling time

    To achieve this kind of result, next, you need to know the types of licenses Salesforce offers for Field Service Lightning.

    fsl development company

    Field Service Lightning Licenses

    Salesforce Field Service Lightning consists of several coordinated components allowing platform users to assign different roles to related people. Each role has different responsibilities and calls for distinct account permissions and settings.

    This is what justifies FSL having different role-based licenses:

    1. Dispatcher: to assign jobs, streamline scheduling and routing of field jobs and manage resources.
    2. Technician: enabling field service agents to update the status of service appointments once completed right from their mobile devices by staying offline.
    3. Contractor: enable scheduling of jobs for external, non-employed users and provide them access to work orders, contracts, accounts, cases, and more.
    4. Contractor Plus: offer additional features to explore more cross-sell and upsell opportunities for non-employees.

    Conclusion

    In conclusion, Field Service Lightning can help you take your service operations to the next level and delight your customers with real-time updates and efficient solutions. It is a one-stop solution that integrates seamlessly with Salesforce and eliminates the need for third-party software.

    Whether you need to manage work orders, scheduling, inventory, communication, or anything related to field service, Field Service Lightning can handle it all.

    To know how Field Service Lightning can transform your customer field services and get unexpected results.

    Take advantage of this chance to enhance your business and customer happiness with Field Service Lightning.

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