Ficep implements cloud-based mobile resource management system22 January 2020

Structural steel and plate fabrication equipment supplier Ficep has deployed mobile technology as part of a real-time management system that is said to have transformed customer service.

Supplied by Leeds-based BigChange, the cloud-based mobile resource management system sees field services engineers at Ficep equipped with tablets that synchronise in real time with central systems as part of a completely paperless system.

“Our steel fabricating machinery plays a key part in preparing steel for construction and keeping the equipment in optimum working condition with minimal downtime is crucial,” says Richard Clark, UK service manager at Ficep UK. “We have been improving our engineering support services to support an increasing number of installations and the introduction of BigChange has completely transformed our customer service.”

Previously Ficep engineers filled out paper services sheets and other forms by hand, which were then sent to the office for processing and actioning, such as the ordering of parts, the production of quotes and issuing of invoices.

Now, BigChange gives Ficep customer service teams and management up to the minute visibility of every service job. Ficep’s engineers receive jobs on their tablets, which provide navigation to site and allow access to all documentation, with workflows ensuring proper procedures are followed and information reported from site. The devices are also used to take photographs which are, together with time and GPS location, matched to service sheets for the job.

“It used to take two or three weeks to get a quote out to a customer; now we achieve that within 24 hours. It’s the same for invoices and with electronic sign offs from customers onsite; we can invoice almost immediately.As a result, there has been a much better and quicker conversion rate of quote to order and queries on invoices have virtually disappeared,” adds Clark.

“The tablets have really revolutionised the way we work, giving engineers instant access to the information they need. We now have service sheets customised for each machine that identifies the correct parts and even gives the engineer a complete history of previous service work and parts used. It really helps them do a good job every time and helps ensure machine downtime is minimised.”

As well as the benefits to the field engineering services, Ficep has also reported time savings back at the office.

Adam Offord

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