Dynamics 365

What is Microsoft’s Connected Field Service?

18th Nov 2023 | 4 min read

What is Microsoft’s Connected Field Service?

In today’s world, businesses need to balance rising customer expectations and decreasing profit margins. To be able to retain a competitive edge, you need to be able to offer excellent experiences for your customers while operating cost-efficiently.

For businesses offering on-site service to their customers, this means delivering a quick, satisfactory resolution while utilising minimal resource and effectively managing stock.

Connected Field Service makes it easier to manage your workload while visiting customers. We explore what it is in more detail.

What is Connected Field Service?

Connected Field Service is a system that integrates Internet of Things (IoT) data with Microsoft Dynamics 365 Field Service. The IoT is a network of internet connected devices which can send data back to a central platform where it is processed.

The Connected Field Service system proactively monitors equipment using sensors, and then creates cases and work orders when components are outside of acceptable thresholds. For example, if a server gets too hot or a vending machine’s cash drawer is full.

Microsoft has its own platform for the IoT, known as Azure IoT. It provides an overview of the readings from the sensors in IoT devices, like this:

Using this data, you can then set up rules to control when alerts are issued. In this example they’re set for when a temperature reading is too high:

These alerts can be simple emails, or they can automatically create cases and work orders in Microsoft Dynamics 365 to despatch an engineer to rectify the problem. Additionally, rules can be configured so that the equipment can try to fix itself. For example, restarting if it has crashed or speeding up a fan if it’s too hot.

What happens when a device has issues?

Once an alert has been received in Microsoft Dynamics 365, you can then choose what to do with it. A case can be created so that an engineer can investigate the issue, or a work order created so that a remote engineer can be despatched to identify the issue.

Based on the type of device and issue, Microsoft Dynamics 365 for Field Service can look at your engineers and pick an engineer with the right skill set and availability to fix the issue.
They can then be scheduled in to complete the work using the schedule board:

Engineers can use their mobile app to receive the job information and post back updates about the work they’ve done to fix the issue:

Using Microsoft Remote Assist, a remote engineer can use HoloLens technology to be assisted by another engineer in a different location, augmenting their view over the top of what they can see in front of them. This means an even faster resolution, even if not everyone can be in the same place.

What are the benefits of Connected Field Service?

There are many benefits to Connected Field Service:

  • Allocate resource better. With Connected Field Service, you can allocate engineers with the correct skill set to your customer locations. Plus, with remote assistance, you’ll be able to use your engineers time more effectively.
  • Reduce downtime. By getting real-time alerts when systems aren’t working correctly, your engineers can deliver a faster fix. It means customers face less downtime and will be more satisfied.
  • Lower maintenance costs. By dispatching the right engineers at the right time, you’ll secure a first-time fix. This means less time is wasted, increasing your cost-effectiveness.
  • Increase visibility. Connected Field Service gives you better sight of your customer’s system data, allowing you to better track performance. It speeds up maintenance and resolution.
  • More upselling opportunities. By understanding your customers’ systems better, you can better identify up and cross-selling opportunities that offer them maximum value.

Find out more about Connected Field Service

Bringing together the Azure IoT and Microsoft Dynamics 365 Field Service allows you to proactively monitor equipment in any location. You’ll empower field engineers to identify and fix issues proactively, minimising the amount of resource you require and improving your customers’ satisfaction levels.

To find out more and see Connected Field Service in action, please contact us and one of our Microsoft Dynamics 365 Consultants will be pleased to arrange a demo.

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