Ensure you are buying a complete system
If the software comes from one supplier, the mobile devices from another and the data from another, cracks can appear into which all suppliers will scurry, blaming one another for faults.
Select a provider who supplies and takes responsibility for the operation of every part of the system. You need to spend your time focussing on your business, not working out if it’s the tablet supplier, the software supplier or this hosting supplier who is fobbing you off this time!
Don’t make large upfront payments:
Field Service Software has so much potential; it’s easy to get caught up in the process of buying a promise. Go for the minimum you need to get your business running on a system, at that point you are past the promises and onto checking out the actual reality of the system.
It’s reasonable to pay a small amount for data import, training and anything business specific you may need to get started but beware of suppliers with large upfront costs.
Don’t purchase software licences, purchase as a service
What’s to keep a supplier interested if you pay upfront? It’s better to drip feed them that money. Purchasing software as a service by a monthly subscription means your supplier has to earn your business each and every month.
Purchasing as a service also means you aren’t stuck with the software you bought until you cough up for an upgrade; you’ve always got access to the latest version and the latest functionality.
Also purchase the hardware as a service
Buying the tablets or smartphones for your mobile workers up-front could be an unwelcome hit to your bottom line. The potential news from your software provider that the latest version isn’t compatible with that hardware would be even more unwelcome.
Taking the hardware on a monthly subscription as part of a total solution means that if hardware requirements change, your supplier changes your hardware at no additional cost to you. Also, if there are faults or breakages a good supplier will swap a device out next day, free of charge.
Keep your options open
If minimum terms are imposed when you purchase as a service, your supplier is guaranteed your money for that term whether they perform or not. Walking away is a last resort but if you can walk away at any point, it really focusses your suppliers mind!
If you’re looking for a Field Service Automation provider who’s business model has been designed from the ground up to keep you in control, give Field Force a call on 01929 557 987