Bila took control of its field service reporting at customer locations

With a team of 75 service engineers, who service robot and industrial installations for Bila’s customers throughout Denmark, real-time data and precise registration of time and material consumption is needed.

But the North Jutland automation specialist wanted a digital solution to provide rapid, real-time data from service engineers’ reports about their work. Until recently, service engineers registered their working time and materials on work sheets and gave them to a coordinator, who keyed them manually into the ERP system. A few service engineers entered their information themselves.

“It was an old-fashioned and unsustainable solution,” says Morten Sejersbøl, Project Manager at Bila. “The entries were not checked and there was a big risk of errors. The solution was also old-fashioned and not very user-friendly.”

“We needed to have better control of the time we spent at customer locations and generally improve our internal logistics and customer service,” adds Jens Erik Majgaard, CEO.

Standard solution with tailored adjustments

This is why Bila was looking for a system for time and material registration.  The automation company chose REEFTmobile for two reasons, says Jens Erik Majgaard:
1. The system can fulfil the fundamental need for time and material registration.
2. Although REEFTmobile is a standard solution intended for purpose-focused service companies like Bila, with all the advantages that implies, the system matches the special way in which Bila run their projects.

The service engineers will be more autonomous and a lot of time will be saved

Bila’s service engineers save time when they can register both time and materials while they are still at customer locations. They do not forget essential details and, most importantly, they get it done! Even if they are in a production hall without Internet access at all, REEFTmobile also works offline.

Service engineers have REEFTmobile with them as an app on their mobile phones or tablets. From the app, they have access to all the information they need to carry out their tasks and they register and report directly into the ERP system using the App´s very user-friendly graphic interface.

Now, all hours and tasks will be registered

“Saving time by removing the many duplicate registrations is important,” says Morten Sejersbøl, “but the biggest economic benefit to Bila lies in the fact that the service engineers register their time, materials and details of their tasks immediately.”

This was not always the case previously, and a lot of information and registrations regarding time and material consumption was lost. Now, the service engineers have an order number with them on their mobile phones, or they can quickly create a new task themselves.

The basis for invoicing is correct and ready much faster

If there is an extra task, the service engineer can send the task to a colleague who can carry it out without involving the office. “We no longer risk that the tasks fall between the cracks, but have them planned right away. It is also clear that the service engineers take more ownership of their tasks,” says Morten Sejersbøl, and continues:

“Previously, we combined the registration of hours spent and material consumption registrations, and invoiced customers once a week. With REEFTmobile, service engineers cannot start the day’s tasks before they have approved the hours for the previous day. This makes our basis for invoicing ready faster.”

Better customer service and fewer errors

REEFTmobile combines all the documentation and information about the specific task and the customer in one place; for example, pictures of the finished task or any errors and shortcomings. The invoice itself becomes more precise and detailed when the service engineer describes the task on the spot and attaches different types of documentation.

Both internal and external comments are available together with descriptions of the task and any problems. With access to the documentation and history, the next service engineer is ready to meet the customer and provide better service.

Our service engineers are especially pleased with this function, says Morten Sejersbøl: “They now have access to some information that they previously did not have; for example, they can write internal comments to each other directly in the system.”

And not only that. In all of the places in the system where certain fields are to be filled in, REEFTmobile can convert speech to text. For this reason, service engineers can be relieved from writing their notes and can record the information verbally instead. It is a function that Bila expects the service engineers will find extremely useful, and which will make it easier to report while in the field.

Flexible cooperation with room for new ideas

REEFT tailored the integration to Bila’s ERP system, an old NAV 5.0. REEFTmobile was developed for recent ERP systems, so everything had to be adjusted and made suitable for the older solution.

“Tom Clausen from REEFT did an unbelievably good job,” says Morten Sejersbøl. “He is very solution-oriented and flexible, and he has accomplished everything we asked him too. Also when we – late in the process – wanted to add new functionality to our solution. We wanted our registration of hours to be automatically converted to different types of overtime. Therefore, we had an addition made to the system so that service engineers only have to decide whether to register hours or mileage – REEFTmobile handles the rest.”