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When service techs misplace a part or tool in the field or show up onsite without the parts they need, the return trips, the unbilled parts and the replacement costs become a costly burden.

To address the frustrations associated with lost tools and provide a way for users to customize the experience they have with their tools, many service organizations are turning to smart inventory management solutions organized through mobile apps.

For service organizations, connecting parts, tools and inventory has the potential to increase revenue by reducing truck rolls, keeping tools performing at top levels and eliminating inefficient paper methods of tracking inventory.

Benefits of Connected Inventory Management

Service organizations are complex operations. They manage an abundance of parts and inventory, often dispersed across multiple warehouses. Service software with mobile makes that process simpler by keeping track of what’s in stock, who has what parts and what to order.

Mobile inventory management tools allow contractors to track and customize the parts they use every day to better address their specific needs on the jobsite, which makes them much more efficient.

Examples of Smart Inventory Management

  • Construction. Construction companies will find inventory management features beneficial for tracking inventory and assets. For example, connecting parts with the rest of the service management process allow construction companies to keep all of their important information in one place rather than juggling excel spreadsheets or pen and paper to manage inventory. Users can keep detailed records of all inventory to easily build a budget and manage annual spend of equipment. Organizations can share information between the field and back office by tracking locations and owners to each inventory item.
  • Heavy equipment. Professionals handling heavy equipment need power and speed, but often that excessive power can make it hard to control effectively; this can lead to breaking off screws, damage to materials and other frustrating rework. Connected equipment makes it easier for users of heavy equipment to monitor settings and control the powerful tools they use every day.
  • Electrical contractors. Electrical contractors can use reporting features to upload data and history to create custom reports that track the success and timing of electrical terminations. Using this information to guide installations and service work, electrical contractors can optimize their parts usage to become more efficient.

The Future of IoT

The Internet of Things (IoT) will only grow in terms of functionality and popularity among construction and equipment businesses. According to a recent Accenture guide, “Driving Unconventional Growth through the Industrial Internet of Things,” here are some of the trends contractors will see in the coming years:

  • initiate tasks and communicate with other equipment;
  • tailor user interfaces, recommendations and movements to meet customer preferences;
  • strengthen features—and thus the benefits they provide customers—through software improvements;
  • learn how to lower operating costs;
  • optimize yield and productivity;
  • prevent accidents and failures during operation; and
  • take action in uncertain or adverse conditions.
Contractors are seeing the beginning of a fully connected jobsite thanks to the evolution of the IoT and advancing solutions like smart inventory management. And it looks like it’s not slowing down any time soon.

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