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Elevate your field service operations with a technician quality program

April 23, 2024

By Sindy Eichen, Field Service Manager

Finding skilled and reliable technicians is consistently top-of-mind for field service leaders, and I am no exception. Technician quality has always been my “baby.”

I work for a global IT solutions provider that does national project and break/fix work, including physical layer troubleshooting, access point replacements, and basic troubleshooting. 

Back in 2014, I formalized our quality program to enhance our customer’s experience and monitor the performance of on-demand technicians. Starting with a simple tracking system and expanding it into a full-scale program has made us more efficient and significantly enhanced our level of service and client outcomes.

Here’s why it matters, how I did it, and what I’ve learned along the way.

Why start a technician quality program?

When I started as a field service coordinator, we didn’t have a tracking mechanism for our techs. We use multiple on-demand marketplaces. Sometimes, we blocked a technician on one marketplace only to have them turn up on another. It felt like we were trying to manage technicians who weren’t adhering to our quality standards. 

That’s when we decided we needed to make a change. We began with the basics, tracking who was late, who canceled, and who didn’t show up at all. It was our starting point for ensuring we were working with reliable techs.

Building the framework

Our Salesforce system plays a pivotal role in supporting our program. When we schedule a technician, we generate a dispatch ticket in Salesforce. Within that ticket, as we schedule a tech, the system populates their name, ID, and if the platform will allow it, their zip code.

The system tracks their arrival time and compares their arrival against their scheduled time, marking them as late, early, or on time. Technicians are late if they arrive after their scheduled start time by more than 15 minutes, accounting for minor delays. A “very late” status is assigned for arrivals beyond this window but within two hours of the start time.

We’re pretty strict about tracking cancellations in Salesforce too, whether it’s the customer or the tech canceling. If a tech cancels with less than four hours’ notice, we consider it a no-show. 

Our quality program is all about transparency and accountability, which helps us with reporting and linking everything back to specific clients and projects.

Evaluating technician performance

We track positive and negative feedback from a variety of sources, including clients, our dispatch team, our tech support team, and our project managers. We record this feedback to get a high-level overview of the technician’s performance. When techs get positive reviews, we put them into our go-to Talent Pools, and they may get work routed to them first.

Some customers want us to track SLA performance. If a technician is late, we need to specify why they were late. We consistently track metrics like on-time performance, so we can encourage positive behavior.

When technicians don’t meet our standards, we take action by making a note on their dispatch ticket. If necessary, we temporarily suspend them for six weeks. This also resets their status in our Talent Pools, requiring them to improve their performance and work their way back up. Sometimes, a tech has a personality conflict with a specific client, so we remove them from that client’s projects but not from our network. If techs are consistently unreliable, we remove them from our network entirely.

Getting your team aligned

Getting our team on board with this quality program wasn’t a tough sell at all. Everyone understood the value right away, especially those dealing directly with technician scheduling and support. In fact, our team members often proactively flag technicians who perform well and those who don’t, helping our leadership understand where to direct recognition and resources. This collaborative effort keeps everyone aligned and focused on maintaining our high standards for technician performance and reliability.

Finally, I want to recognize all the Field Nation staff, including customer success, who have supported our business through the many years we’ve worked together. With their help, we’ve fine-tuned our quality program with automation and data integrity, ensuring the delivery of the successful outcomes our customers expect.


About the author

Sindy has over 12 years of experience in field services, working her way up from a customer service representative to a field services manager for a leading nationwide managed service provider. She is known for her expertise in driving operational efficiency, particularly through implementing automation and integrations. Her expertise has been vital in guiding successful mergers and acquisitions and organizational adoption of on-demand labor platforms like Field Nation. Prior to working in field services, Sindy honed her customer service skills in the insurance industry.


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