The latest advances in technology will lead to the evolution of the dispatcher’s role, driving service organizations to broaden the scope of what dispatchers do and how they do it. In other words, technology makes dispatchers more effective, enables them to leverage their unique capabilities to solve problems for their customers, and lets service organizations derive more value from their dispatchers’ work.

In the past, the work of a dispatcher consisted of repetitively assigning work to technicians with poor visibility and no context around the end-to-end field service process. The results varied from dispatcher to dispatcher, were difficult to align with the company’s business objectives, and not scalable.

Supported by intelligent tools, the dispatcher of the future offers customers an end-to-end concierge service to ensure the best possible experience. They respond to the initial service request, look at the corresponding asset and service history, and ensure the request gets routed to the remote engineering team so they can attempt to troubleshoot the problem immediately without dispatching a technician. If that is not possible, they make sure everything such as parts, people, tools, resources, and information is in place before dispatching the technician and confirming the appointment with the customer. They drive the whole process and collaborate closely with the customer to understand the urgency of the request, adding the invaluable human touch that allows organizations to deliver high-quality service.

The Role of Dispatchers Today

The role of the dispatcher is vital to delivering a customer experience that sets service organizations apart from the competition. Service organizations not investing in digital transformation and prioritizing customer experience run the risk of falling behind in increasingly commoditized markets. Dispatchers are the ones who respond to service requests and ensure work gets routed to technicians who then execute it. Without dispatchers assigning the right technician to each job, technicians would not get the chance to do their best.

Dispatchers play an important role not only in the scheduling process but in the complete field service delivery chain. They have relationships with all parties in the scheduling process—customers, technicians, and third-party resources—and are key in ensuring that the field service organization stays connected internally. On a tactical level, their work requires immediate collaboration with Finance, CRM, and HR but design, engineering, and quality teams also leverage their field insights to inform strategic product decisions.

The Dispatcher of the Future: Confident – Informed – Focused

The dispatcher of the future orchestrates all internal and external activities of the field service delivery chain, guided by the objective that the customer’s needs are met throughout the full lifecycle of their assets. From the time the customer purchases the asset, to installation, maintenance work, and monitoring, until end of life, which could mean replacing or decommissioning of the asset, the dispatcher of the future is there every step of the way.

To have their dispatchers grow into this new role, service organizations need to make them confident, informed, and focused. Confident dispatchers make the right decisions that are aligned with corporate goals. Informed dispatchers have a complete overview of their work and always know what is going on in their designated territories. Focused dispatchers can quickly zoom in on relevant details.

So, for dispatchers to be productive and at the same time consistently deliver a great experience to all customers, their service organizations need to provide them with tools and technologies—whether for a fully automated, manual, or an approach that is a combination of both, such as our Assisted Scheduling tool. The right technology helps dispatchers make faster and better decisions while letting them add a much-needed human touch for high-value tasks like customer or internal emergencies.

The result is a customer experience that will set service organizations on a significant growth trajectory.

ABOUT Katharina Streater

Avatar photoAs the former senior product marketing manager at ServiceMax, Katharina Streater drove the scheduling, contractor management, and analytics capabilities of the ServiceMax platform. Passionate about technology, Katharina had extensive knowledge in analytics, AI, and held several marketing positions over 14 years at OpenText, a leader in Enterprise Information Management solutions. A native of Germany, she deepened the international character of the ServiceMax product marketing team.

ABOUT Mayhul Jain

Avatar photoMayhul is the director of product management at ServiceMax. Prior to ServiceMax, he had roles in Field Engineering and Field Operations, including managing spare parts planning in the semiconductor equipment and distributed energy spaces.

ABOUT Gabriele Bodda

Gabriele BoddaGabriele Bodda is vice president of product management at ServiceMax, where he leads the team responsible for Work Order Management, Scheduling & Optimization, and Strategic ISV Partnerships. He has over 15 years of experience building and managing enterprise software, previously holding several positions within the cloud division of SAP in Silicon Valley. Native to Italy, Gab has lived in San Francisco, London, and recently moved to Paris. He holds an MSE from the Polytechnic University of Turin and an MBA from UC Berkeley.