As a market leader in the industry, Altitude Infra manages everything from deployments and operations, to marketing for our fiber optic network clients.
We help public stakeholders develop digitization strategies and we specialize in Public Initiative Networks (PINs), helping organizations meet the challenges of implementing high-speed coverage in low-density areas.
I was a technician before becoming a team leader, and I’m still active in the field. Since I’ve been there through the transition from our old system – and still use it for back-office team management – I have a 360° perspective on Praxedo’s field service management software and happy to share its benefits.
BEFORE: A BUREAUCRATIC, INFLEXIBLE PROCESS
Before switching, our field technicians entered work orders into a shared Excel document, which was updated throughout the day as new requests came in. It was a time-consuming, overly bureaucratic process to say the least. Work order reports were sent directly in an email, with photos attached when necessary.
Back then, our team included 4 technicians across 2 departments. Now, 22 technicians serve our territory, with a total of 50 technicians across France. The old system was manageable when our team was smaller, but we realized as we grew that it wasn’t sustainable.
AFTER: HUGE TIME SAVINGS AT EVERY LEVEL
The shift to digital has made our lives much easier and saved us a lot of time in the field. In fact, we’ve gained an extra day (8 hours per week), per technician thanks to a significant increase in productivity. That time would previously have been spent on administrative tasks like sending and replying to emails, entering work orders into our database, and completing work order reports.
Double data-entry was also a big problem, which was frustrating. From an administrative perspective, Praxedo has saved us considerable time.
Our old system was costing technicians time on the road. Between calls, technicians had to take out their computers, find the next address, and map their route – or even keep a physical binder with a printed list which was highly inefficient.
Route planning wasn’t a significant issue for us – as masters of their territory, our technicians organized their own routes. However, Praxedo’s solution is more practical – work order requests come in directly via the app, and technicians create their own itineraries.
We switched to Praxedo in 2018, so we’ve been using the solution for a few years now. The transition was smooth since the tool is so intuitive. Our reports were simple at first, but they’ve become more robust over time.
Quick uptake of the mobile app
Our technicians embraced Praxedo’s mobile app extremely quickly – it only took two weeks.
New technicians do receive training; however the app is pretty simple to use. There are fields to fill out and boxes to check and the interfaces are familiar – nothing is scary. And if anyone has the slightest issue, the other technicians are there to help.
When we began using the Praxedo solution, it was for work order reports. Our main goal was to save time in the field. Our supervisor at the time had heard of Praxedo and wanted to use it.
We continued using our old system for work order planning and internal time sheets. Gradually, we began using Praxedo more and more to help us manage requests and for service time justification. This progressive implementation made the overall switch a lot easier.
Significant time savings in the field
Without a doubt, we save a lot of time completing work order reports using Praxedo versus having to write out detailed emails. For example, in the report, we can click on the location of an outage, a dropdown list pops up, and all we have to do is select the equipment used. We still have to provide some essential information, but the majority is pre-defined.
We carry out a lot of highly technical service calls, and we’ve been able to include these configurable forms in Praxedo. Being able to complete reports immediately on-site, after each job is complete is a monumental time-saver.
Work order management and job history
With Praxedo, we don’t have to update our logbook regularly – work orders are imported into the mapping tool for easy tracking.
Another advantage is that Praxedo allows for greater interoperability between our technicians and teams. When there’s a problem with a service request, we can simply trace the work order history in the database, even when another team has carried out the work previously. That has been immensely valuable.
Gains in technician productivity
We’ve also noticed a significant gain in productivity, since the app allows us to track our technicians’ performance.
To sum things up, Praxedo absolutely met our primary goal, which was to save time on the field. But we’ve realized that the benefits go much farther than that… what is mentioned above are for the most part, the benefits to our technicians, but we have so many other resources doing different tasks!