MILPITAS, CA – A new survey commissioned by Trimble Field Service Management found that the majority of respondents cited customer satisfaction is their number one priority (76%). Nearly all of the survey respondents felt that field service workers were the “face” of the company (96%). On the top concerns rankings, fuel prices ranked first (61% of respondents cited this as their top concern), with the uncertain economic climate taking second place (55%), and competitor activity coming in third (42%). One key finding in the survey was that customer service was more important than cost-cutting, with 42% of respondents citing that as a goal.

Trimble commissioned Proteus Research to conduct the survey, which collected responses via telephone in May and June 2012 from 100 senior managers or directors who work in the area of field service. To qualify to have their responses included in the data in the report, respondents needed to operate fleets of more than 150 vehicles consisting of vans or light-duty trucks.

The survey also found that field service managers are taking driver safety more seriously, with 90% of respondents saying field service worker health and safety is a higher priority than it was five years ago. More than 90% of respondents said their company checks drivers’ licenses and more than 80% regulate workers’ shift lengths. A number of respondents noted their companies are using telematics to identify and improve poor driving behaviors (66%). In addition, the majority of respondents (96%) stated the believe stickers in vehicles that encourage good driving behavior do make workers more aware of their driving habits.

Sustainability was another driving factor for respondents, with 78% stating that sustainability plays a “strong or crucial” role in company business plans.

Beyond those areas, respondents indicated their organizations have been improving field service worker technology, with 72% having upgraded in the last year, and 43% planning to upgrade sometime in the future.

The report, which cited data from the Aberdeen Group (separate from Proteus Research, which conducted the survey), noted that investing in fleet management and field service management technologies can produce dividends, such as a reduction in fuel consumption (22%), improved fleet utilization (32%), a reduction in daily mileage (31%), and reduced operating costs (21%), among other improvements.

For a copy of the report, you can visit Trimble's site here.