When modern cloud computing hit the market in 2006, it changed how we handled information, especially in the field service management sector. With the introduction of the internet and micro-technologies like smartphones and tablets, we suddenly had a way to connect from anywhere in the world. It also meant we had a way to connect people with information, with data, and with everything they’d need to organize it from anywhere with an internet connection
Cloud-based technology has advanced a lot in the 15 years since. Many of its founding principles have been refined. But how can this help with field service management today? Let’s take a look at 5 key benefits of cloud-based form platforms in particular.
1. Modular access
The term “modular” is mostly associated with ICT systems. Simply put, a modular system is one with multiple access points connected to the main data source. When talking about cloud-based forms, the data source would be the servers where this information is stored.
In a linear system, there would only be one access point, which is how things used to work. From filing cabinets to a PC’s hard drive, linear storage systems have only been able to work so long as people could be near the access point (e.g. the office).
A cloud-based, modular system makes any device connected to the system an access point, from a work laptop to a personal device. This gives everyone an incredible amount of flexibility, while also keeping a clear data trail of who access which information, and when.
The more forms your management system has to deal with, the more information it has to store. Similarly, the more complex your forms and data entries, the more you have to invest in good data organization – at least with traditional methods.
With cloud-based management systems, everything is kept on digital platforms. Many of those platforms – like ours – are designed to organize this data in a way that works for you. Digital platforms are much easier to scale up (you only need to buy more storage space on your cloud server)..
3. No local equipment needed
Of course, investing in cloud-based management means you don’t have to invest in servers you would keep in the office. This has multiple benefits. Cloud storage, on average, works out much cheaper than buying physical servers, because you’re only paying for the storage space you want. This saves you money on running costs, regular maintenance, and insurance.
Local servers (i.e. ones you keep in the office) are also vulnerable to the same environmental risks as other local electronics. Some of the most common risks include:
- Power outage
- Electrical damage
Local servers can also be noisy and often require in-house technicians and regular maintenance. Cloud-based platforms remove all these risk factors.
How helpful would it be if your business could receive instant notification alerts if changes were made to an important document? What if you wanted to know exactly when a certain file was uploaded or wanted to schedule an update for a time when you wouldn’t be online?
Automation is one of the most powerful tools a field service management system can offer. With it, you can cut down on administrative tasks and management by delegating tasks to the platform itself.
5. Simplified workflows
The goal of cloud-based technology is to simplify workflows and remove the complications behind data management. With FSM Lite, for example, you can easily create forms through a user-friendly drag-and-drop form builder. This tool can help you create digital forms that are tailored to your data collection needs – all without having to learn code or outsource coders.
Cloud-based technology has come a long way in the 15 years – and it’s evolved with the data management environment. Get ahead of the curve by working with a partner who understands your data collection needs and can provide a platform to meet them. Try FSM Lite today!