In this new series of excerpts from a recent white paper published by Esri UK, now available at Field Service News, we discuss how to digitally transform field operations using the power of location.
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HARNESSING THE POWER OF LOCATION
Location is at the heart of field activities. It sounds like an obvious statement, but field management often either completely overlooks location or marginally takes advantage of it.
Field managers and workers are likely to make decisions faster and deliver better customer service if they can access location intelligence in the field. This e-book explains how geographic information system (GIS) technology and a suite of field mobility apps work together to improve performance in the field. Five case studies show how organisations incorporated apps into workflows and describe the returns they gained.
Organisations use GIS to capture, manage, analyse, and display all forms of geographically referenced information and use focused field apps to improve field operations. Its ability to transform data into useful information has proved to be highly valuable to field operations managers in four operational areas: coordination, navigation, data collection, and monitoring.
FIELD OPERATIONAL AREAS
Coordination for exceptional customer care
Daily operations need to quickly adjust to changing conditions including last-minute requests and unexpected resource unavailability and delays. A geographic perspective allows you to easily see the location of the worker nearest the call and quickly assign that worker to respond. This level of flexibility results in exceptional customer service and compliance with service-level agreements.
Workforce for ArcGIS helps you quickly put resources where they are most needed.
Navigation for timely service
GIS does much more than map point A to point B. For instance, users can add other layers of information, such as private road networks and asset locations, to street maps. GIS apps combine this data and calculate optimised routes that fieldworkers see on their mobile devices, even when disconnected. GIS recalculates delivery windows in real time based on traffic conditions, so drivers can give an estimated time of arrival (ETA), which keeps customers happy. GIS is the route optimisation tool of choice for organisations whose reputation and success are defined by on-time delivery.
Navigator for ArcGIS, StreetMap Premium for ArcGIS, and ArcGIS Network Analyst support routing with high-quality street data and give you tools for complex problem solving.
Data collection for accurate information
Built-in GIS capabilities in mobile apps ensure that location information is included in the data. This capability extends to other business data submitted via inspections, incident reports,
or any type of form entered into your system of record. Understanding the location where field activities happen is critical for historical analysis, QA/QC, regulatory compliance, and coordination with other users.
Focused apps allow crews to capture, update, and analye data accurately. Fieldworkers use these apps to create surveys, capture the answers, and analyse the results. Mobile apps provide fieldworkers with their organisation’s maps, allowing them to locate assets and mark up the map with additional details. Drones offer an inexpensive way to capture field imagery, and by using a desktop app, drone-captured imagery can be easily turned into professional quality imagery products that you can use for mapping and analysis. Data generated by these apps can all be synced at the office and shared within the organisation and the public.
Collector for ArcGIS, Explorer for ArcGIS, Survey123 for ArcGIS, and Drone2Map for ArcGIS boost data accuracy and optimise geospatial analysis.
Monitoring for fast analysis and response
It is difficult to manage what you cannot see. GIS provides dashboards that enable real-time monitoring of events and key performance indicators (KPIs) so that you can make decisions at a glance. GIS-based dashboards show information as maps, charts, gauges, and other understandable visualisations. Combined with real-time GIS analysis, GIS dashboards help organisations focus on specific information by revealing exceptions, trends, and patterns that are relevant for decision-making.
GIS also supports tracking of field personnel. Managers and supervisors are able to view where workers are and where they have been through a mobile app that captures their location tracks. This helps them identify workers’ last known locations, confirm the territory covered, and more effectively balance the allocation of workers to needs.
Operations Dashboard for ArcGIS helps users visualise and monitor data that is relevant to them. Tracker for ArcGIS enables monitoring of personnel to better manage what happens in the field activities.
Look out for the next feature in this series coming next week where we discuss how location intellingence can help organisations in improve efficiency and refine their field operations.
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Further Reading:Read more about Digital Transformation @ www.fieldservicenews.com/digital-transformation
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