Salesforce Field Service Lightning (FSL) comes packed with functionality to help you elevate the customer experience. If you’re not familiar with FSL, this Salesforce offering is an extension of Service Cloud and provides advanced features for effectively managing field service processes.
As with any technology, simply having the right features is not enough — you also need to know how to use them properly to maximize the benefits. This blog post will explore exactly what that entails, including the team members you need for a successful FSL launch, the top three components and supporting features of FSL around which to build your FSL program, and how to put all of that together to improve the service experience for your customers.
Assembling the Team: 4 Key Roles to Make Your FSL Program Successful
To start, you need to ensure you have the right team members in place to implement and run your field service operations. Organizations with the most successful FSL programs typically include users across the following four categories:
- Administrators: First, you need users who can set up the FSL application to meet your organization’s key business requirements and perform day-to-day administrative tasks, such as onboarding new users and adding new inventory records. These administrators should also be the first line of support for users who experience any issues with FSL, including the mobile app.
- Agents (Service Reps): Next, you need a set of agents who can interact with customers via the phone, email or other channels to receive incoming field service requests and create work orders. Many organizations already have a support group that handles these types of tasks, so it’s simply a matter of orienting these agents within FSL.
- Dispatchers: You will also need dispatch users who can schedule service appointments. Fortunately, many FSL features can streamline this role from what it has traditionally looked like. For example, the FSL dispatcher console allows users to easily view all appointments in a Gantt chart or in map mode and offers advanced scheduling capabilities.
- Field Service Technicians: Finally, you need technicians who can visit customers on site to perform field service work. These users will rely on the FSL mobile application to review and record relevant customer and job information and to get notified when dispatchers schedule new appointments or make any modifications.
Importantly, these roles are just a starting point. It’s easy to envision these types of roles using FSL for traditional service work, such as cable installation or construction projects; however, any company with a mobile workforce can introduce a variety of team members to FSL. For instance, firms that employ traveling nurses, social workers and insurance adjusters can all benefit from the type of advanced field service operations that FSL makes possible. As a result, the roles described here are general guidelines that should serve as a starting point for assembling your team.
Building Your Program: What You Need to Know About the Top Components and Features of FSL
After assembling your team, the next step to building a successful program involves evaluating the elements of FSL that will deliver the most value for your business and determining exactly how you will use them.
The FSL application has three main components that all teams should consider:
- Core Field Service: This component provides access to key modules, such as service resources, skills, inventory tracking, van stock, work orders and service appointments. These objects form the foundation of FSL and allow you to capture relevant information about field service requests and what resources you need (including people) to properly complete them.
- Managed Package (Advanced Scheduling): Salesforce acquired ClickSoftware in 2019 to amplify the features of FSL. This functionality is now available as a managed package and provides additional capabilities, such as advanced appointment scheduling and optimization. Admins can use these capabilities to set up different scheduling policies, while dispatchers can use them to more effectively schedule appointments (either manually or automatically) based on technician availability and additional parameters, such as skills and location. You can also turn on geocoding to track the location of field reps and equipment such as work vans.
- FSL Mobile App: This component allows you to share information in real-time with technicians while they are on the road or visiting customers. Salesforce has a dedicated mobile application with FSL features that allows technicians to view work orders and service appointments, verify customer information and use Chatter to communicate with other team members. The mobile app is enabled with push notifications so that technicians do not miss time-sensitive information and it has an offline mode in case technicians experience spotty cellular connectivity.
Beyond these main components, FSL offers many supporting features to bring everything together. Some of the most commonly used modules within the FSL application include:
- Operating Hours: Windows of time in which your company completes field service requests.
- Work Types: Templates that help you create standardized field service requests.
- Work Orders: Requests to complete field service work. These typically contain customer information and the scope of needed work.
- Service Appointments: Scheduled appointments to complete field service work, which can last one or more days.
- Service Resources / Crews: Individuals or teams of crew members who are able to complete field service work, including contractors that you may employ.
- Service Territories: Geographical or functional areas where you offer field service work.
- Skills: Abilities possessed by service technicians to complete certain field service work.
- Time Sheets: Tracks the time it takes for service technicians to complete field service work.
- Product Items: Inventory or services required for field service work.
All of these elements work together to ensure your employees are prepared, informed and able to put their best foot forward when interacting with your customers. As a result, while it might sound like a lot of moving parts go into each FSL program, what your customers experience is a cohesive set of interactions with your team members, including those who perform onsite work.
Bringing it All Together: Enhancing the Customer Experience with FSL
Since FSL integrates with the rest of the Salesforce platform, the team members that work within this program will likely collaborate with other teams in your organization, such as Sales and Support. This collaboration improves key customer-facing processes by allowing cross-functional teams to easily share information that will benefit the entire company.
As a result, your customers will experience the following benefits:
- Exceptional Customer Service: When your teams share data across one integrated platform, everyone has the same global 360-degree view of the customer, which means they can answer customer questions more completely and efficiently, without having to dig for relevant information. It also ensures that your field reps have an accurate picture of the services required by a customer and the appropriate resources to fulfill a request from the moment they arrive on site.
- Better Time-To-Resolution: Arming your team members with this wealth of customer information also helps them more efficiently and effectively address customer issues. Delivering a resolution correctly the first time around — not to mention making sure that all happens in a timely fashion — will help increase customer satisfaction.
Of course enhancing the customer experience in this way will also deliver enormous benefits for your business, most notably improved customer satisfaction and loyalty. That’s because the more value your customers receive from your services, the more likely they are to purchase from you again. This satisfaction can also lead to “second-order revenue,” which occurs when customers provide positive referrals that bring in new business.
Getting Started with FSL in Your Organization
When set up properly, FSL is an extremely powerful tool that can empower users across multiple teams to deliver an outstanding customer experience from start to finish — all while providing high levels of visibility and reporting to help your team regularly enhance business performance.
Ready to learn more about implementing FSL and the benefits of a best practice program? Reach out to AllCloud to get started today.
Co-written by John McGrath