FieldOne Sky for Microsoft Dynamics CRM includes a mobile application to allow engineers to view and complete work orders whilst in the field. In my previous posts I have described how to configure FieldOne, create work orders and schedule them. This post will explain how the engineers use the mobile application.
Having loaded the FieldOne Sky Mobile application you’ll be presented with a screen similar to this one. The exact layout will differ slightly between mobiles and tablets plus you may notice some minor differences between Windows, IOS and Android devices. During this post I will be showing the application running from my Surface Tablet but the functionality is pretty much the same on all the devices.
The negative point is that at the time of writing FieldOne Sky has only recently been released as part of CRM 2016 and unfortunately the mobile application seems to be suffering with a number of minor and not so minor bugs. This is a real shame as personally I might be reluctant to complete a live deployment of the mobile application until the majority of the current issues are resolved.
Update: Recent tests on the mobile client have been much more promising. I am sure bugs still exist but the most major issues do seem to have been resolved. I will update below ….
The positive is that I am confident these issues will be resolved soon as updates are already beginning to happen. The ISO application has recently been updated and already seems improved but not yet perfect. I will try to flag any problems I’ve found in the current version and I will update these notes as improvements are released. Despite these early teething problems, I am still positive about FieldOne Sky as the application holds so much promise.
In this post I will attempt to cover the main features that relate to work order schedules, as I suspect these will be the most used options. But as you can see below quite a few other options exist and also (I believe) the application can be customized.
I did speak to Resco Woodford who confirmed the customizations are possible but if you attempt to create any bespoke changes beyond the FieldOne functionality a license for the Resco mobile client would be required. It is worth keeping this in mind if you plan any changes to the software.
The first thing you’ll want to do after loading the application is to go online. Clicking the “network” icon will connect you to CRM, below I have shown the before and after view of the icon. The circle icon will refresh any data which is stored locally on the device. I haven’t established exactly what is held off line but it seems to be that account and contact information are available off line but you will need to connect online to access your schedule and update work orders.
The accounts option will list your accounts and enable you to see keys details, especially useful on a mobile device are the contact details and ability to quick access a map view.
Another useful feature is the ability to create views and search for accounts (and other entities) within the FieldOne Sky mobile application. To do this select the “Advanced Find” menu option in the drop down from the accounts option.
You can then easily use the simple query tool build custom queries on accounts. The functionality might not be as powerful as a “proper” advanced find in the CRM web interface but for a mobile device this feature is easy and quick to use. I did find creating my first query a little clunky but I am confident that with a little practice I could get the hang of it quite nicely.
Work Order Schedules
The work order schedules option will probably be the one you’ll use the most. Use work order schedules option to see the jobs that have been allocated to you and others. Unfortunately, this concept was giving me a problem! Whenever I clicked the agenda option the application crashed. But luckily the day, week and month options all worked.
Update: Agenda now works.
The agenda is a useful way of seeing all of your schedules in an easy to read list format.
Selecting day (for example) shows the schedules for all resources on that day. You then need to enter the name of the resource (or the start of the name) to filter the view. I was surprised at this as I expected to see only “my” schedules by default. But this was a simple issue to get round.
Note: There is still a bug that “my” means schedules you own when ideally it should be work order schedules you are the resource on. But I have documented how to change the resource views to show only your work orders schedules if required.
Having clicked on the entry on the schedule that is required the detail of the work order is shown on the right hand side. (See above) One of the key pieces of information you’ll want to update first is the status on this screen, as here you can show that you’re on route, the job is in progress or it is complete.
You should notice a menu of options on the work schedule, selecting each of these gives access to additional details / functionality related to work orders.
Map is the first option, which as you’d expect will display a map for the location of the job. Notice the map icon next to the save button. This will load the location details into whatever navigation tool you are using.
The next “tab” is “Info”, this gives additional details about the job. Including any special instructions that relate to the job. Notice the “Create follow up” option in the top right hand corner, this can be used to quickly create a follow-up work order whenever required. This might be essential if any aspect of the job can’t be completed and a return visit needs to be planned.
Next to the “Info” tab is “Other”, this again provides additional detail about the job. Importantly here you can see any promise made to the customer on the time the work should be completed.
Next to the “Other” tab is the “incidents” tab. Here you can see the incident(s) associated with this work order and if required you can drill into them to see additional details.
Unfortunately, the next option “Service tasks” just crashed meaning IU could access it. But I have seen it previously work on the IOS version of FieldOne Sky, so I am hopeful a fix will be available soon.
Update: Service tasks now work.
It is now possible to see service tasks and set each one to % complete as required. I personally would like to see an option to simply tick that a task has been done. I suspect this is possible with a fairly simple change! I will investigate this and blog about it soon.
The next two options are products and services. Both of these allow access to any products or services associated with the work order.
And next to those you can find the payments tab. I tried to record that I’d taken a credit card payment in the application and got the error message below.
The payments option seems to have been removed, which as it wasn’t working has to be a good thing. Hopefully something like this will return in later versions of the mobile application.
The note option is a useful feature; not only can you take text based notes but also photographs can be added. A very useful feature if you need to capture before and after pictures of a repair.
Next to notes is activities, this seemed to work well. It provides a quick and handy way to create CRM activities to act as reminders or to record details of conversations with the customer. You can see below that I created a phone call to test this functionality.
The next option “Resources” was again unfortunately failing. But I assume this should have showed me details of all of the resources committed to the job. Including people and equipment.
Then finally we have the signature option will can be used to capture a sign off for the completed work. This is then added to the notes of the work order as a picture.
As I have already described I am a little disappointed that there are a number of bugs connected with using work orders but it is still possible to; view schedules, access work order details, access maps / directions, plan follow-up jobs, record activities against the work order, take notes (including photographs), capture sign off, and update the work order with completion details, Etc. So despite the bugs the main functions are available and we are getting a glimpse of what will hopefully be a reality very soon.
Following this latest release I must say the application is much improved, I feel we are starting to see the real potential of FieldOne Sky. Exciting stuff. Well done Microsoft and FieldOne.
Hopefully you’ll enjoy using the FieldOne Sky mobile application. J