Field service provider numbers to double by 2025, Zebra study predicts
Field service providers in the telecoms and technical industries globally will increase the use of mobile technologies to optimise and transform workflows in the field. This is according to a new study by Zebra Technologies Corporation, a company working “at the edge of the enterprise” with solutions and partners that enable businesses to gain a performance edge.
The number of organisations that will implement predictive solutions as part of their mobile strategies is set to double in five years, according to respondents to Zebra’s three-part Future of Field Operations vision study on the telecommunications, manufacturing, construction, mining, and agriculture industries. just 16% of organisations use predictive solutions to assign the right resource to the right task at the right time with the use of mobile devices, and this will jump to 32% by 2025.
“With increased focus on streamlining workflows and getting tasks done right the first time, service providers in the telecommunications and technical industries are increasingly equipping their front-line workers with mobile technologies such as rugged tablets, mobile printers and handheld mobile computers,” says Alex Cooper, director of government and critical field service strategy, Zebra Technologies. “Faster mobile connectivity, combined with purpose-built rugged devices and advanced applications, will enable enterprises to keep essential services uninterrupted, safe, and efficient.”
In the study, 76% of respondents from service providers say their field operation strategies now focus on mobile devices instead of desktops, especially with 86% agreeing that the availability of faster 4G and 5G networks will drive greater investments in new field operations technologies. The use of mobile devices will quickly boost productivity with 87% in the study indicating that they expect to see positive impact within the next year.
While the study indicates email (62%), real-time database access (60%) and dispatch management (57%) are ranked as three most important applications, about nine in ten service providers plan to expand their use of remote monitoring and reporting as well as advanced analytics and machine learning as part of their mobile strategies over the next five years.
To empower front-line workers at the edge of the business to become more productive, increase their job satisfaction, and ultimately improve customer service, field service providers are increasing their investments in mobile devices. only 28% of companies equip more than half of their field teams with mobile technologies. Respondents project this will grow to 44% by 2025.
Meanwhile, reliability of devices in the field is a high priority as purpose-built rugged mobile smartphones rank as preferred device option for field service providers. By 2025, 93% of companies will use both rugged mobile tablets and rugged smartphones.
- Zebra’s study indicates the use of predictive solutions by telecommunications and technical industries will double from 16% to 32% in 2025.
- The increased availability of faster 4G and 5G mobile networks will drive investments in new field operations technologies, according to 87% of study respondents.
- Approximately nine in ten service providers plan to expand their use of remote monitoring and reporting as well as analytics and machine learning over the next five years.
- Rugged mobile devices will be the most prevalent type of enterprise device for field service providers globally, with 93% adopting rugged tablets and rugged smartphones by 2025.
The survey results are part of a three-part series on the Future of Field Operations released over the first half of 2020. The first part on the energy and utilities sector was released in January, and the upcoming third installment in this series will focus on public safety. More than 1,200 key decision makers from these three industries located across the Americas, Europe and Asia Pacific were surveyed.