Field Service Trends that Will Shape This Decade

Yogesh By Yogesh
Field Service Industry Trends

What will the future of field service look like by 2030?

For many, 2030 is a distant future, but for those who are responsible for shaping the direction of the company, it is not the time far away. And for that, they generally take critical decisions now to transform the organization and prepare for future transformation in field service management.

By 2030, field service will be shaped by significant advancements and transformations in the form of various service management trends that will arise out of technological disruption in response to rising customer demands.

Organizations need to make strategic decisions now and prepare for the evolving future of field service. This preparation involves a shift from merely reacting to immediate challenges to embracing a long-term vision that aligns with the disruptions in the field service industry. It keeps them aligned with disruption happening in the industry and helps figure out the white spaces where nothing much is happening at the moment.

On the contrary, as pointed out by the Silicon Valley tech entrepreneur, Kim Polese, “The short-term thinking disease is everywhere you look.” It traps the leadership executives in determining tactical responses for the current challenges instead of taking action for the future of field service management. The difference in approach could be seen as:

Tactical responses

Futurist responses

Defining priorities and allocating resources

Pursue research for new investments

Personnel changes—hiring, layoffs, quits, promotions, acquisitions, and organizational changes.

Workforce development for future needs

Makeshift technology changes that may impact ROI and business’ key KPIs in present

Technology selection and adoption based on how technology will be used a couple of years down the line and not the current trends

In order to make the shift, you must engage yourself in developing a “clear vision for industry’s evolution”, according to this HBR article. In that process, if we take a look at the current “sustainable innovations” in the field service industry trends, it gives us a preview of how the industry is expected to evolve. Here is an infographic of current field service management trends that will shape this decade and trigger impactful evolutions in the next one.

infographics of Field Service Industry Trends

So, what might the future of service management look like? Well, let’s dissect each of these top field service trends to see how they are setting in and the responses of the service leaders. By examining these technology trends in FS management closely, you can better understand their impact and how they shape the field service industry.

Predictive Maintenance

One of the critical areas of focus is predictive maintenance, a key component of the AI-powered transformation in field service that is transforming into predictive field service management.

Harnessing artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning to predict equipment failures, it reduces downtime and brings massive turnaround to operational efficiency, as it minimizes disruptions and improves the productivity of resources, including field service. It thus plays a vital role in enhancing customer satisfaction.

As per Precedence Market Research, the global predictive maintenance market size is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 29.86% during the period 2022-2030, from USD 8.31 billion in 2022 to USD 67.21 billion by 2030. The increasing pressure on companies in MRO sectors to reduce the downtime and the cost of field service operations are the major factors that are driving this growth.

In this YouTube session by Google Work Space, Prashant Dinghra, Machine Learning Lead, Advanced Solutions Lab, Google Cloud, explains how you can create a hypothesis and build data models around it to develop predictive maintenance capabilities, mainly to:

  • Predict if equipment will fail in the next ‘N’ period
  • Predict if equipment will fail in the next ‘N1’, ‘N2’…period
  • Predict if the equipment will fail in the next ‘N’ period due to the fault in the part ‘X’
  • Predict the time to failure or remaining life of the equipment
  • Find anomalies

In the same video, Manju Devdas, founder, and CEO of Pluto7, also explains how predictive maintenance “makes your operations and monitoring team more productive” and saves money by reducing unforeseen downtime.

Digital Twin

Another transformative trend is the adoption of digital twins, which is a conflation of AI, ML, and IoT technologies to collect, process, and then drill down data to get actionable insight. It is basically creating a digital clone of the systems, products, and processes to analyze the implications of any action on them in the real-world environment.

The global Digital Twin market is expected to grow at a CAGR of more than 24.7% during the forecast period 2021 to 2026, as reported by IndustryARC. Interestingly, 42% of market growth is expected to take place in North America, especially in the automobile and aerospace industries. And most of the maintenance management programs and even asset management software have started incorporating asset performance with Twin models.

While it has a number of applications in product design and development and business optimization, maintenance operations is leading the segment by 24%, closely followed by performance monitoring.

AR and VR for Remote Assistance

The use of AR and VR for remote assistance is also on the rise, transforming the way field service teams operate. It is one of the key field service automation trends. As per Gartner, by 2025, nearly 50 percent of all deployments in service management will make use of Augmented Reality (AR)s tools.

In the service industry, AR and VR technologies are used to create a simulated environment derived from real-world scenarios. It enables service technicians to visualize and identify the problem beforehand so that they could go prepared at the client’s location with tools and essential spare parts, while also allowing them to connect with certified experts from remote locations to seek guidance and support.

By enabling technicians to visualize issues and solutions before they even arrive on-site, these technologies reduce travel time and costs, and improve first-time fix rates. Moreover, AR and VR enhance the training of field service personnel, allowing for a more knowledgeable and efficient workforce. AR and VR are thus turning out to be one of the important field service management market trends.

One of the biggest developments in remote assistance is Microsoft’s Hololens. According to Alex Kipman, the person in charge of the HoloLens project, Hololens is for the “people that have been, in a sense, neglected or haven’t had access to technology [in their hands-on jobs] because PCs, tablets, phones don’t really lend themselves to those experiences.” It will improve collaboration across locations and facilitate access and exchange of data to resolve the issues quickly and accurately.

Dynamic Scheduling and Dispatch

Scheduling and dispatch processes act as the connective tissue between technicians and the back-office staff. Any error or mismanagement at this point is quickly reflected as the loss of productivity and poor first-time fix rate.

In an article published by McKinsey on How Disruptive Technologies are Opening up Innovative Opportunities in Services, it is stated that “By using data and telematics to track technicians schedules in real time, companies can add 20 to 30 percent to the working day.”

Similarly, Deloitte stated that companies are “Reducing costs by optimizing dispatch processes through employing information such as skills, proximity, priority, account allocations for scheduling and dispatch.”

Dynamic scheduling and dispatch powered by cloud-based field service management solutions are critical in optimizing the coordination between technicians and back-office support. Using real-time data and telematics, technicians can track and manage the schedules and locations of field personnel, and bring improvements in operational efficiency.

Route Optimization

For years, the field service industry has grappled with the challenge of optimizing routes, as there are costs associated with routes in several ways. The primary cost factor is the time and resources required to travel between customer locations. There are costs linked to fuel, vehicle maintenance, and employee wages for travel time. Additionally, there are indirect costs such as administrative time spent on scheduling and dispatching, as well as the opportunity cost of having technicians spend time traveling instead of performing billable work.

Optimizing routes has thus gained attention of field service professionals, which has led to the rise of sophisticated route optimization software and application of route analytics, emerging as one of the important field service software trends.

As per Global News Wire, the global route optimization software market, estimated at USD 5.8 billion in 2022, is projected to reach USD 21.7 billion, growing at an astonishing CAGR of 17.9% over 2022-2030.

The growth rate signals how businesses are using geographic information systems (GIS) technology to optimize routes and save time and fuel costs.

Route optimization software solutions enable the users to select fuel-efficient routes, track drive time and prevent unplanned stops within the service delivery network. Usually, such solutions consist of a powerful route optimization engine that tests multiple scenarios to check the time and cost factors to make the best route recommendations.

Customer Self-service Portals

If we are to take Global New Wire’s findings, then the global customer self-service solutions market is expected to grow from its USD 12.9 billion size in 2022 to USD 34.35 billion in 2027.

The rise of customer self-service portals reflects the growing trend of empowering customers. As these service portals become more sophisticated, they help build stronger customer relationships and community engagement around a brand’s offerings.

The rising use of self-service portals and apps is due to their ability to provide customers with information and tools that enable them to schedule technician appointments in their own time, locate technicians, and provide feedback on the job done by them. There are two incredible benefits of deploying self-service portals:

  • It provides more control to the customers in deciding on when and how they want to be served.
  • It could help you build a community around your product/service to effectively engage your customers with more resourceful content and other activities.

Well, the self-service economy might grow much faster than you expect, considering that “70% of customers expect a company’s website to have a self-service portal,” according to Steven Van Belleghem, Global keynote speaker. A similar study conducted by DimensionData reported that “73% of customers prefer to use a company’s website, instead of using social media, SMS and live chat for support.”


Workforce as a Service is another trend reshaping the field service landscape. As one of the field service strategy service trends, the model supports the gig economy by enabling field service organizations to hire freelance technicians and contractors on-demand, which provides flexibility and scalability. Access to role-based information through cloud-based platforms ensures that these freelancers can effectively and efficiently complete their tasks.

McKinsey reported that there are approximately “68 million freelancers in the US.” Most of the gig workers are supporting B2C models, working for companies such as Uber, Lyft, TaskRabbit, Instacart, Airbnb and Shyp. As technology is innovating the field service management processes, the industry too is expected to see a rise in freelance technicians and contractors, which will lead to a significant field service business transformation.

In an article by IBM, titled “How the gig economy will transform service management,” the company highlighted the significance of “field service predictions” in revolutionizing the way companies handle their workforce and predict outages. According to the article, implementing “systems to track work orders and records for all field infrastructure” enables companies to make more accurate predictions about potential outages and effectively deploy their workforce.

These platforms allow the service businesses to provide role-based permissions for anytime, anywhere accessibility of information to their freelance technicians. So, while the technicians could access information to complete service/repair tasks, companies have more control over who and how much information a freelance technician must see.

Technician Enablement Tools

To clearly understand technical enablement tools, you need to see the whole field service management process from the technicians’ perspective. A human and not a resource and that requires an acceptance that they are prone to fatigue, frustrations, and mistakes. The next step post-acceptance is facilitating them with tools that share their burden and support them during tough times.

These are the tools that are paving the way for field service modernization and bring significant improvements in customer service. For instance, diagnostic tools could provide them with information such as service manuals, service history, suggestions for diagnosis and repair, and the relevant service manual to solve the issue accurately. As stated by Deloitte in the article, Smart Field Service “Creating the right experiences for your field technicians is essential in delivering delightful customer experiences.”

Yogesh Choudhary, CEO at FieldCircle, elaborates on this as, “The people critical to your business success are out in the field and their empowerment can not only provide immense business and customer insights but can simply be transformative for your service business.”

Performance Management Tools

The head of a field service company would always want its field service team to deliver the best performance and knows that a typical FSM process requires a performance evaluation of people, processes, and assets. The process of performance monitoring has undergone a significant change, especially with the rise of performance management applications.

Most organizations use KPIs or metrics to evaluate performance. Some of the most-used field service KPIs, according to the Field Service News report, include customer satisfaction, service revenue, mean time to repair, SLA compliance, field technician utilization rate, and service part revenue.

As the companies would move their processes online, it would increase the adoption of performance management tools to set, define, monitor, and measure KPIs, be it of assets or field teams or so on.

Valued at USD 19.32 billion, the global asset performance management market is expected to grow at a CAGR of 12.0% from 2023 to 2030. On the same line, the global field service management market forecast says its size is expected to grow from USD 3.173 billion in 2021 to USD 6.17 billion by 2028, at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 11.7% during the forecast period.

Knowledge Management

Finally, the focus on knowledge management is intensifying as companies seek to capture and retain critical expertise, particularly in the face of an aging workforce and high turnover rates. Effective knowledge management systems preserve the valuable information and make it accessible, thus enhancing service quality and technician performance.

The efforts to prevent the loss of knowledge with an aging workforce, high employee turnover, and operational complexity would increase in the industry. With a large retiring but insufficient incoming workforce, the talent crisis looms large in front of businesses. However, knowledge management will turn out to be a boon and push away this fear.

It might be one of the reasons for enhanced steps to improve the knowledge management framework. Another critical reason for increased knowledge management efforts in the industry is improved first-time fix rate. By making critical information such as service manuals associated with work orders accessible for technicians in the field, companies have a better opportunity to ensure quick and accurate resolution of the problem.

An Afterthought

The field services trends clearly reflect that the future of field service management is characterized by a blend of technological innovation and strategic foresight. Businesses that proactively adopt these field service trends will be well-positioned to meet evolving needs and thrive in the competitive field service sector.

What seems “nice to have” may become a “must-have” in the blink of an eye considering the rapid changes in technology and the acceptance of technology solutions among consumers. And these disruptions often lead to businesses leaving because they fail to adapt and adopt.

Now is the time to start thinking about what may happen 4 or 6 or 10 years down the line in your industry and plan – to be ahead in the race, serve your customers better and build a business that is a disruptor. We have answered, ‘What are the top field service management trends?’ And by adopting these trends, businesses can remain competitive and effectively navigate the ever-changing landscape of service management.

So, it’s crucial to stay proactive and keep tabs on future trends impacting field service businesses. The best way to embrace these trends is to adopt a field service management software that combines these capabilities and serves all your needs.

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