Having conducted exclusive research into the use of Cloud based Field Service Management Systems in 2015, Field Service News and ClickSoftware have once again teamed up and returned to the topic one year on to see just how their predictions based on last year's findings have borne out.
In part one of this series we looked at exactly what those predictions last year were as well as some of the headline findings of this year's research. Now in part two we will look to see what trends have emerged year on year plus Marina Stedman, Global Field Marketing Director, ClickSoftware offers her expert view as to what these trends mean for field service organisations...
The headline finding of this year’s research is that we have indeed seen a continued shift towards more companies using the Cloud for their FSM systems. When comparing data from 2014, 2015 and 2016, we have also seen increasing year on year growth.
Indeed, the number of companies now using Cloud based FSM systems is well over a third, with 36% of our respondents stating that they are now Cloud users. This is a year on year increase of 8% in terms of companies using the Cloud for FSM systems.
Not only does this show a continuing move to the Cloud, but it is also a relatively significant increase in the year-on-year growth we saw in the previous year’s research.
In fact, the increase in companies moving to the Cloud within the last twelve months is almost three times more than it was in the previous year (9% vs. 3%).
The increase in companies moving to the Cloud within the last twelve months is almost three times more than it was in the previous year (9% vs. 3%).
Of those companies now using Cloud based FSM solutions a third (33%) have been doing so for less than six months.This is a slight uplift compared to similar responses in 2015, which in turn were higher than the results of 2014.
Indeed, across the three years that we have conducted research into this topic we have seen an increase of 10% amongst those companies that had recently (within the last 6 months) made a move to the Cloud at the time of the relevant research project.
This would again support our previous hypothesis that the somewhat relatively slower move to Cloud computing as a platform for FSM solutions (when compared to other business operations tools such as CRM) is largely tied to companies’ timetables for moving away from their existing, legacy systems.
It is clear that the trend towards Cloud adoption is accelerating and on the main when companies do upgrade their FSM systems, they are more likely to opt for the Cloud as the platform for their new system.
Also, when we consider that companies have traditionally regarded the shelf life of FSM software to be somewhere between three and seven years (with some companies even ‘sweating’ their software solutions well beyond the ten year mark) the implementation of new FSM systems takes time.
However, it is clear that the trend towards Cloud adoption is accelerating and on the main when companies do upgrade their FSM systems, they are more likely to opt for the Cloud as the platform for their new system.
Expert View: Marina Stedman, Global Field Marketing Director, ClickSoftware
As we said in last year’s report, the cloud is not a new concept, in fact it’s nearly twenty years since Salesforce, a company that has only ever offered cloud-based solutions, was established.
While the field service industry has taken some time to catch up, “move to the cloud or remain on-premise” is a key topic in the field service industry today.
While field service staff have typically been managed and dispatched to customers in a fairly traditional and hierarchical manner, that’s a difficult model to maintain nowadays as demanding consumers, used to instant “uberized” service and status updates expect everything to be delivered faster, more flexibly and more responsively.
The power of cloud computing and the ubiquity of mobile devices means companies can now redesign their entire FSM process to the benefit of both the engineer and the customer, giving everyone instant information about their jobs, projects and appointments whenever, however and wherever they want it.
When considering perceptions of the Cloud, over half (56%) now see Cloud as the future of enterprise computing, an increase of 7% in just 12 months.
When considering perceptions of the Cloud, over half (56%) now see Cloud as the future of enterprise computing, an increase of 7% in just 12 months. Organisations of all sizes see the benefit. 58% of organisations with large field teams (more than 300 field service engineers) said that Cloud is the “future of enterprise computing”, (a change of 9% from 49% in 2014/15) and 57% with smaller field teams (less than 50 engineers) agreed, compared to 40% in the previous survey.
Working with customers all over the world, ClickSoftware has found the Cloud to be a great leveller, enabling every organisation, no matter what size, location or business model to rapidly adopt and improve upon the same applications and processes that drive enhanced customer service for everyone.