Extending ServiceMax Beyond Service: Workflow Automation

In the previous 2 articles, we discussed how tracking and utilizing asset data with ServiceMax can greatly enable both revenue generation and cost controls. Many of those features and functions can be streamlined and automated through our Service Process Manager (SPM) capability. SPM is a configuration solution that requires no coding, allows business administrators to automate service workflows, and enables simplified, standardized data collection across the enterprise.

With SPM, business admins get an easy-to-use set of tools to build, modify, and maintain processes of any complexity—without the need for IT-intensive customizations or coding. Business admins will also find it easy to configure all the steps of any process, automate intricate workflows, and significantly shorten deployment times across the entirety of their Salesforce platform.

The toolset is part of both of ServiceMax product offerings, referred to as Service Process Manager (SPM) in Asset 360 and Service Flow Manager (SFM) in our Core product. Additionally, SPM is not limited to the Asset 360 functions. It can be used across Asset 360, Salesforce Field Service, or any of the associated Salesforce clouds. If Core customers are also Salesforce users, our SFM functionality can be used in any Salesforce process.

In this article, we will look at a few different roles within an organization and how they can leverage this process automation toolset.

Service Leader or Training Staff

One of the most challenging aspects of managing an onsite, off-site, or near-site equipment service and repair operation is onboarding and training new staff. Whether it be pairing new hires with seasoned staff, new hires calling or texting with issues, or staff having to follow behind unskilled staff to correct issues, the time to value of new hire staffing is a critical cost to organizations.

SMP allows service leaders and training staff to set up multiple employee profiles based on competency and level of training and provide a custom work order process for each level. Work order types can be filtered by skill level so that easier or repetitive tasks can be assigned to newer, less experienced workers while more difficult tasks are reserved for higher-skilled staff.

Based on skill level, tasks can be prescribed to be done in order, step by step, with validation that steps 1, 2, and 3 are completed correctly before moving to step 4. Each step can have checklists or job aides attached, leading the unskilled technician through the process. This workflow automation allows new hires to be productive much sooner, and also allows them to work independently and not impact the productivity of the other workers around them. As they get more experience, they progress up through staff profiles, experience fewer restrictions, until they are signed off as fully trained on the jobs/equipment that they support.

Service Leader or Process Improvement Staff

In conjunction with the training aspects of SPM, service leaders or process improvement professionals can leverage the process automation toolset to drive continuous improvement and operational effectiveness. Using asset data and performance metrics, service leaders can seek best practices and process improvements across their organization.

By tracking standard performance metrics like mean time to service/repair/install (MTTS/R/I), first-time fix rate (FTFR), mean time between service calls (MTBS), and overall asset availability rate (AAR), service leaders can learn who is performing the work the best, fastest, with the highest quality and the lowest recall rate.

The processes followed by these people can be documented and incorporated into the guided workflow processes mentioned above so that all new staff members are trained on the best practice.

In addition, for an initial period, the new recommended procedure could be required on all work orders dealing with that process to enforce a standard approach to that process so that everyone understands the new best practice.

Asset Manager or Planner

Asset managers can leverage SPM to automate the moves, additions, changes, or deletions of assets from the asset register. They can create automated workflows for these activities to ensure that all required data is captured, in the correct manner, so that the asset register is correct, in real time. A required process step could be implemented that every asset touched would have to have an asset tag scanned, location confirmed, and an overall asset condition rating assigned. This would greatly assist in asset tracking and verification.

In addition, as service letters, safety letters, change orders, or field modifications are received, they can build a detailed work process, provide an automated SPM script to be followed by the technicians, and use ServiceMax’s “Equipment Service Campaign” to create a work order for any asset that meets the field change order requirements or attributes as defined.

One automated process flow, thousands of assets that require service to comply, and the system will create thousands of trackable work orders, apply that automated process workflow to them, and then track those work orders to measurable work percentage completion until the task is complete.

Salesforce Administrator

It is important to note that the ability to automate processes, through the use of the SPM toolset, is not limited to asset-based activities or those areas where ServiceMax applications are normally used.

Once ServiceMax is purchased, the SPM toolset is available and can be used to automate process flows in any Salesforce process, throughout the Salesforce environment. Sales processes, quoting, case management, invoicing, any process that occurs on the Salesforce platform can be guided by using this toolset.

Stayed tuned for the final part of this series, where we’ll focus on customer experience.

ABOUT Joe Kenny

Joe Kenny is the vice president of global customer transformation & customer success at ServiceMax. His career spans over 30 years of leadership positions in Operations, Sales, Product Development, Product Marketing, and Field Service. Beginning his field service experience with the U.S. Naval Security Group Command (NSGC) as a mainframe computer technician, Joe subsequently lived and worked in Asia, the U.S., and Europe. Joe has focused on customer relationship management, using clearly defined and mutually agreed to measurements of success, and driving to continually exceed customer expectations, allowing for exponential business growth and client retention.