The Most Important KPIs for Field Service Management
If you’re a leader in the field service industry, it’s essential to track and measure key performance indicators (KPIs).
KPIs are metrics that allow a business to track its performance and assess progress toward key objectives. Field service KPIs are performance indicators specifically tailored to the daily workflow and challenges of field service operations.
Without KPIs, it’s nearly impossible to know how your organization is performing and what you need to do differently to meet your goals. By identifying and tracking the right ones, however, you can stay ahead of the competition and steer your organization toward unparalleled growth.
The most important metrics are not universal for the company. In fact, they vary significantly based on the unique responsibilities of each role: field technicians, dispatchers, and leaders have different day-to-day goals and expectations, and their KPIs should reflect that.
KPIs for Dispatchers and Schedulers
Time to schedule
The longer it takes for dispatchers and staff schedulers to assign jobs to field workers, the fewer jobs that can be booked throughout the day. Delayed scheduling, lower productivity, and decreased utilization often go hand-in-hand. Monitoring this metric with an eye on scheduling appointments faster leads to more consistent revenue and higher workforce utilization.
Time to first contact
Prospective customers don’t want to wait to hear from a company that piqued their interest. If they do, they may turn to competitors who reach out to them sooner. Use this data to ensure you’re reaching out to customers as soon as possible when they indicate interest, which increases the likelihood of a sale and improves the customer experience from the very start.
If your time to first contact is high, consider potential internal improvements: maybe customers need self-service scheduling options, or you can integrate scheduling software with sales or CRM platforms to decrease the steps required to reach the prospect, schedule a service call, and close the deal.
The amount of time it takes workers to get to a job site is another metric to consider for dispatchers and schedulers. If travel time for field workers is high or trending up, it could indicate technicians are being sent to jobs that are too far away from each other, there are too few technicians with a certain skill, or too many last-minute jobs are being added to the schedule.
Armed with this data, you can investigate potential solutions: provide field workers with the best route in a mobile app, train more workers to provide a certain service to cut down on specialized workers’ travel, or find a better way to address rush jobs.
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Ratio of Schedulers to Field Workers
In order to understand the workload of your staff schedulers, you’ll need to measure how many schedulers it takes to successfully allocate all deskless workers. This KPI helps you plan for current and future staffing needs, like the number of schedulers you need to add for every X number of new deskless workers, or how historical retention and attrition rates should factor in.
This KPI is particularly crucial for maintenance planning, which requires dedicated scheduling time. A high ratio indicates more deskless workers per scheduler, and a low ratio means fewer deskless workers per scheduler. While the ideal ratio may vary from company-to-company, the overall assumption remains the same: the higher the ratio, the more difficult it becomes to accurately plan and forecast. The lower the ratio, the less productive your schedulers are. Your business will need to decide on a target and make necessary adjustments (like assigning more work to underutilized schedulers or, on the other hand, hiring more) to remain as close to that standard as possible.
KPIs for Field Service Managers
This KPI measures how much time is spent completing tasks that fall under a field worker’s actual job description vs. time spent on administrative tasks, internal meetings, or other non-revenue-driving activities. This reveals how productive your field workers are on a daily basis and allows you to make necessary tweaks to increase efficiency.
To increase utilization, look for ways to replace manual or time-consuming internal processes. For example, instead of having technicians take notes on paper or in a simple notes app, which take time to transcribe to the right place later on, explore ways to collect information from the field in secure apps that automatically sync with customer profiles and team schedules.
The quicker deskless workers respond to service calls, the more work they’ll be able to complete and more satisfied customers will be. Measuring the average time it takes to respond to the call initially, and ultimately to resolve the call, helps to identify any potential holdups in the process. Studying outliers in response time—certain calls that took an extremely long time to reach or resolve—can uncover jobs where the existing process failed or areas where field workers need further coaching.
Be sure to consider response time in the context of related KPIs like travel time and utilization: a consistently poor response time could indicate issues with scheduling or travel requirements, and a consistently better-than-average response time could mean the worker is underutilized.
This KPI measures the ability to schedule and complete work for customers on time. Schedule adherence is typically measured by setting a tolerance against a scheduled start time—i.e. a 30-minute window, 15 minutes on either side of the stated start time—and measuring how many minutes after that tolerance period the field worker arrives for the job.
High schedule adherence means field workers are consistently reaching customers at the time customers expect them, while low adherence indicates that workers are not meeting customers’ expectations. Tracking this KPI helps better satisfy customers by setting more accurate, data-driven arrival times, and sticking to those arrival times when they’re set.
Variance from standard
Each job has an estimated duration, so measuring the variance from this standard duration provides important insight into operational issues. When variance is high, field service leaders can investigate whether the job duration estimate needs to be adjusted upward or if field workers need better information, training, or equipment to complete the job in the expected time.
This KPI tracks how often a job needs to be revisited because the repair or installation did not work. This is a red flag that either the job was not done properly the first time around or the requirements for the job were inaccurate, leading to errors in the scope or execution of the work.
Rework percentage is a critical KPI for field service leaders, as the jobs that require rework are particularly frustrating for clients and have the potential to result in lost future business.
KPIs for Deskless Workers
Satisfied customers often turn into loyal customers. By tracking customer satisfaction through brief customer surveys or other methods, you can evaluate how effective and positive day-to-day customer interactions are.
Higher customer satisfaction means higher retention rates, more referrals, and greater profits. If customer satisfaction is low, consider this trend in the context of other KPIs like response time and repeat visits—the customer’s unhappiness could be rooted in having to wait too long or arrange multiple jobs for the same problem.
Jobs completed in a day/week/month
Number of work orders completed in a given time frame is a simple yet fundamental KPI. This indicates the number of successful jobs completed, and plays a huge role in organizational metrics like utilization and time to schedule.
If field workers are completing fewer jobs on average over time, it could be a sign that some jobs are taking longer than they used to or there are productivity issues to address.
This metric tracks how many jobs had to be paused and finished later because the field worker couldn’t get access to the job site or didn’t have the right equipment to complete the job.
Too many repeat visits means the workers in the field likely aren’t getting the right information upfront to successfully complete the job, or perhaps there needs to be more proactive communication with the customer to make sure the area/equipment is accessible.
How Technology Can Make Tracking Field Service KPIs Easier
Fortunately, the right technology can make it easier for your field service organization to track KPIs. You can count on a great field service management solution to:
- Connect disparate data: With technology, you can determine whether there’s a relationship between various metrics. For example, you may find a correlation between high travel time and low utilization that can be addressed with operational fixes.
- Analyze, monitor, and understand data: It can be tough to make sense out of all the data you collect. Technology can collect, collate, and communicate these data in a way you can understand and use to form a strategy.
- Utilize actionable reporting: Data reporting is meaningless unless it’s actionable. With the right tool, you can generate reports that tell you how you’re performing now, how these trends have changed over time, and where you can take meaningful action to reverse poor trends.
- Garner deep insights for informed decision making: Business decisions that affect a large mobile workforce—and many customers—should come from accurate, data-driven insights. Field service management tools enable your organization to make confident, strategic decisions that boost your bottom line.
Field Service Management Software
While measuring KPIs is important in the world of field service management, it’s certainly easier said than done. If you’re still using manual tools or disparate systems, tracking and managing the necessary data can feel like an uphill battle.
Skedulo offers an intelligent field service management solution that enables you to track KPIs, identify inefficiencies, and streamline field service operations. With tools to analyze productivity, optimize travel routes, and better equip field workers, you can take the right steps to improve field service delivery.