10 Steps for a Successful Field Service Software Implementation

Ensure a successful Field Service software implementation by following these ten steps.

Table of Content

    For many field service companies, the value of modern software tools is obvious. But sometimes, it is less obvious how they can effectively deploy new software without shutting down their entire operation for days on end.

    By design, software like Dynamics 365 for Field Service touches all business operations. It facilitates everything from quoting, scheduling, dispatching, inventory management, communication, and billing. So how can any field service business handle disruptions to all those affected teams at once?

    With just a bit of planning, successful field service software implementations are easier than you think, especially when you have the help of an experienced service provider. This article outlines a straightforward ten-step process any field service business can follow to deploy new software successfully.

    1. Build Your Team

    Successful software deployments are a team effort. You need a project champion in your organization willing to take the lead and see your field service software implementation through to the end. That might be your business owner or an executive, but it could also be a manager or supervisor within your operations teams.

    Field Service Role Based GuideField Service Role Based Guide

    That individual needs to bring a team together. Remember, field service software touches all business units within your organization. If a team is affected by new software use, they should have a say in the deployment process.

    Operational Maturity Assessment

    Schedule a free, two-hour, Field Service Operational Maturity Assessment and see how you stack up against your peers across 5 domains and 37 competencies. We’ll help you identify the value of moving to the next level.

    2. Understand Your Specific Needs

    The biggest mistake most field service companies make is diving into a software deployment too fast. Only some people in your team might be on the same page about your business needs. For example, there might be a disconnect between the strategic view of executives and what operational staff are seeing on the ground.

    So, are you looking to optimize labor utilization? Make inventory management more efficient? Onboard new customers faster? All of the above? Before anything else, your team needs to get on the same page about what is best for the business. In other words, you must all pull in the same direction on this project.

    3. Identify a Reliable Technology Partner

    Major software deployments are time-consuming. While some stakeholders may be able to assist directly with the software deployment, most field service companies don’t have the extra resources available to do it in-house, even if they do have the expertise.

    Look for a technology partner your company can work with. You need to find a partner with the technical and project management resources to deploy on a schedule that works for your business. Field service software, like Dynamics 365, functions as an ongoing service. It’s “living” software. So, the relationship is really that of business partners, not customer and vendor. You’re looking for a partner agency you can work with reliably long-term.

    4. Field Service Software Allows You to Set Clear Goals and Objectives

    Most of your background planning is set now. You’ve assembled your team and partners. You know what problems you’re trying to solve. The last step before getting down to brass tacks is setting clear goals or objectives for your software deployment.

    What will a successful project look like for your business? All technicians using the system two weeks after rollout? All of your billing handled through the new Dynamics 365 Field Service and Business Central modules within four weeks? Or are you looking for total adoption of the full solution suite? Use the needs your stakeholders and team members identified earlier to inform what “success” looks like here.

    5. Establish Your KPIs

    A deployment may pass the eye test and appear successful, but you really need to measure performance to know whether something is a quantifiable success. And if you want measurable results, you must establish key performance indicators (KPIs) upfront.

    5 Signs That your Field Service Company is Ready for a Modernized Field Service Management Solution

    6. Create a Detailed Deployment Plan

    Now it is time to work with your partner and create a clear, detailed deployment plan. Include specific steps, timelines, and resources involved. Every team involved needs to see when and where to take action, and when other actions will impact their capabilities.

    You also need to plan for potential problems. Create a rollback plan in parallel with deployment. If there are setbacks, business changes, or other events that disrupt your deployment, it should be clear to everyone how to roll back to the last viable configuration that doesn’t disrupt your business.

    7. Conduct a Phased Rollout

    Sometimes business forces you to accelerate timelines, but you don’t want to rush your deployment when possible. Instead, roll out in phases, so you have time to pause and evaluate how each meaningful change affects operations. Begin with a pilot group, if possible, and expand from there.

    8. Ensure Constant Communication with Your Field Service Software

    While you and your technology partner carry out the deployment plan, ensure you keep all stakeholders up to date on progress. Consider posting daily or weekly digests summarizing progress. In addition, reach out to individual stakeholders about particularly notable events that will impact their business unit.

    The Right Microsoft Partner Can Drive Business SuccessThe Right Microsoft Partner Can Drive Business Success

    9. Conduct Training and Establish Support Processes

    Before each business unit is ready to go live with Dynamics 365, make sure you conduct thorough training, so they know how to use the new applications. Your investment in new field service software will be wasted if you don’t teach your workers how to leverage it to its greatest potential.

    Also, make sure you have reliable support processes in place. Work with your technology partner to establish policies and processes that work how your employees need to work. For example, what support will technicians need in the field if they encounter a problem with mobile software? How about sales reps on the road with prospective clients?

    10. Monitor KPIs and Review Outcomes

    As your deployment progresses, keep an eye on those KPIs you established at the outset. Then, review each phase as it completes and see how you’re stacking up against your projections. If something looks off, regular check-ins with the deployment team and stakeholders can help identify any problems or roadblocks early on, allowing you to address them quickly and minimize any negative impact on the project timeline. Field service organizations are dynamic, and the software implementation plan should reflect that.

    Velosio Can Help You Have a Successful Dynamics 365 Implementation

    Field service software, like Dynamics 365 from Velosio, can help you optimize your field service operations. But you need to ensure it is rolled out effectively. If you want to implement new field service software, contact Velosio about Dynamics 365 for Field Service today.

    Experience a Day in the Life of a Field Service TechnicianExperience a Day in the Life of a Field Service Technician