How to manage outsourced services
When you make money out of distributed assets (like printers and copy machines, vending & coffee machines, laboratory equipment, etc.) and have a maintenance or replenishment as an essential part of the process, then outsourcing of field services might be a tricky job.
The process of maintenance and replenishment is always in real-time with a need for intensive field service management and in some cases with a stringent service level agreements. Due to a high cost of owning the team for this purposes, more and more business owners are considering the possibility of outsourcing services of maintenance and replenishment.
In this case, the two main areas of interest can be identified that need more attention and have to be appropriately managed: the user satisfaction and the service delivery management.
If the business is oriented towards serving the humans, then being responsive to requests and keeping the user informed about the progress is of vital importance. Reports that summarize the user satisfaction and organize the data by a service type, territory or service provider are most important. Early information about the problems may save you from losing some contract and indicate the lousy performance.
The service delivery profoundly affects the profitability of the operations. The business owner has to have a bright and timeless information about what is happening in the field and being able to measure the performance comparing to the goals. Features like GPS tracking, automated work order dispatching, real-time analytics and push notifications are the must in this case.
To conclude, the software that has to support the outsourcing of service management at least has to help these two main areas to minimize the risk and to provide the business owner with early indicators of poor service quality or underperformance of contracted service providers.