Mobile Security

Today’s advanced enterprises make extensive use of mobile devices in order for team members to exchange information, collaborate, and carry out business whenever and wherever they need to. BlackBerries, iPhones, Google Phones, and other smartphones as well as PocketPCs and PDAs are now allowed wireless remote access to the enterprise network.

As a result, they introduce additional vulnerabilities into the system.

  • Bluetooth exploits and unencrypted passwords can allow malicious individuals to gain access to private information.
  • Various wireless technologies that have substantially simplified the task of transferring data have provided openings for malicious code. In addition, the diversity of these wireless technologies combined with the constrained environments of these devices have made it difficult to come up with an all-in-one solution.
  • All PocketPCs, PDAs and smartphones can be synchronised with PCs and laptops, giving malware an entry point into computers and networks. Memory cards are guilty of this too.
  • VoIP, which are usually unencrypted, allow other people to perform unauthorised capture and recording of private conversations.

Mobile security is still an emerging discipline. Because of this, many organisations that allow members’ mobile phone access into the network don’t actually have a specific security policy for such devices.

That’s why we’re here to help. We’ll conduct a thorough evaluation of your security policies and systems in relation to mobile devices and seal gaps we spot along the way. If you don’t have the needed policies or if what you have needs an overhaul, we’ll set everything up (including the needed applications and infrastructure) for you.

Once we’ve got everything in place, you won’t have to worry about the vulnerabilities mentioned earlier. In addition to that, your organisation will already be capable of preventing the following:

  • Access to company information when the phone ends up in the hands of anyone other than the authorised user.
  • Being billed for phone usage due to virus activity
  • Unauthorised phone activity monitoring through spyware
  • Other disruptions caused by mobile-based malware

Other defences we’re capable of putting up include:

Check our similar posts

Implementing Large-Scale Complex Business Change

Sometimes, driving your people to work harder is not enough for your organisation to withstand the pressures laying siege to it. With uncertain economic conditions, unpredictable fresh competition, and looming threats from the environment or even pandemic-grade diseases, empowering your people to not only ‘think’ but also to ‘step’ out of the box is currently the name of the game.

However, such initiatives typically require sweeping changes throughout your entire organisation … and to think even the slightest change is often met with hard resistance.

Whether you’re about to undergo an M&A, relocate due to a major catastrophe, scale down to a skeletal workforce, or implement a brand-new company-wide strategy, our systematic approach to large-scale complex business change can help you make the transition as seamless as possible.

We understand the importance of the human aspect in change management. That is why we’ll focus on making your people appreciate the benefits of having to learn new skills, perform new tasks, employ modern technologies, and go through new processes in order to tone down the resistance level.

Our entire process spans from top to bottom, wherein we’ll start with your sponsors, down to your managers, and then to other stakeholders in making them appreciative of the needed changes and in order to achieve alignment with your organisation’s goals. Our top to bottom approach is also aimed at casting a positive “shadow of the leader” on people down the line, enabling them with an optimistic view despite the gruelling tasks before them.

We invite you to have a look at the steps we take in implementing large-scale complex business change to win over a strong and lasting commitment to it.

Evaluating the Required Change

Large-scale complex business change initiatives can be implemented expeditiously and economically if you’ve clearly defined the scope of the change as well as the forces that shape your organisation. You’ll want to know which areas yield easily and which are hard to change to determine where and how you’re going to focus more of your efforts on.

To arrive at a sound and systematic plan, we first gather as much information as needed and analyse them. We determine whether your departments have the required capabilities and how we can arrive at a clear organisational alignment. That way, we don’t waste time, effort and resources when the moment comes to carry out the plan.

These are some of the diagnostic procedures we perform in evaluating the required change.

  • Change complexity analysis. We’ll assess the contribution of people and task factors to the overall complexity of the change project. This will help us determine how to approach the problem efficiently.
  • Causal analysis. By establishing cause and effect relationships, we can identify root or circular causes. This will allow us to pinpoint problem areas and prevent a repetition of past mistakes.
  • Structural analysis. Any company is propped up by a number of structures: organisational, process, motivational, social, and physical, among others. Understanding the structures that drive, motivate, hamper, connect, and influence your people’s behaviours can provide insights as to how or where structural change can best be executed.
  • Context analysis. We’ll look into market forces as well as political, economic, social, technological, legal, and environmental factors enveloping your business. We’ll also analyse your driving objectives, organisational alignment, and organizational capabilities. By analysing the internal and external environment in which your business currently operates, we can formulate a customised strategic and effective plan of action.

Managing Stakeholders

Change initiatives won’t prosper without total commitment from all stakeholders. Stakeholders refer to people in your organisation who either have interests in the change project or can be affected by it.

We deal with your stakeholders starting from the top because if we can’t gain full commitment from those already in the best position to spur the diverse entities in your company into active cooperation, striving to secure commitment from other areas will be futile.

That is, if you don’t have the full support of your key and principal sponsors, i.e. the people who have the biggest say and have greatest control over resources in your organisation, you can’t hope to sustain the change endeavour, let alone provide the much needed spark to get it started.

Here’s how we carry out our stakeholder management actions.

  • Conduct research to identify all stakeholders: the sponsors, your internal and external partners, the main targets of the change, and all interested parties. That way you can “switch on” implementors of each change action in the proper sequence.
  • Not everyone will offer resistance to your change endeavours. We’ll help you identify those stakeholders and sponsors who are willing to offer support, evaluate the level of support they are willing to give, harness all available supports and utilise them extensively to benefit the change.
  • Gain a deeper understanding as to why certain stakeholders are willing to lend support. In doing so, we can implement the right strategies that will encourage them to continue supporting you.
  • Assemble a leadership team that will champion your change initiatives. We’ll facilitate effective collaboration among its team members, transforming them into a cohesive force designed to carry out plans and motivate everyone else down the line.
  • Upon realisation of the change project, we’ll see to it that all stakeholders get a taste of the carrot at the end of the stick. This will encourage them to continue active cooperation in future change initiatives.

Planning for the Change

Anyone who has experienced having their car stuck in the mud knows that stepping on the accelerator will only get the vehicle trapped even deeper. Without the aid of a towing truck, getting the car out will require careful planning since different combinations of pulling, pushing, lifting, rocking to-and-fro, and stepping on the accelerator may be needed.

Of course, some combinations are just better than others. The same principle holds when effecting change.

Our approach to change management typically varies depending upon the information we obtain from the different analyses performed earlier. For instance, since not all organisations are suitable for a collaborative approach, we will employ either collaborative, consultative, directive, or coercive change management strategies wherever applicable.

A well-planned change will result in a smoother, less costly, and less disruptive transition. Here’s how we’ll help you plan your change initiatives.

  • When put in a predicament similar to the car-in-the-mud, the basic strategy entails identifying the current resisting forces and predicting what other resisting forces may be encountered along the way. After researching and pointing out your organisation’s resistance forces, we’ll lay out the most appropriate facilitation, education, and negotiation techniques.
  • To bring down wastage to the lowest possible levels, we’ll engineer a change delivery plan that involves the most cost-effective sequence of driver, process, technology, organisational, and people alignment.
  • To win and maintain a high level of trust, confidence and commitment from all sponsors and stakeholders, we’ll present a clear road map of the change process as well as landmarks that will prove how far we will have gone. These landmarks will then be brought to each sponsor’s and stakeholder’s attention each time they are arrived at in order to build up assurance and continued commitment.
  • We’ll design measurement tools and schedule reporting deadlines so that you’ll know what to look forward to and when to expect them.

Managing the Change

Your company will hold a better chance of maintaining a sizeable lead over the rest of the pack if you constantly establish a rally point and instil in your stakeholders the drive to rally to that point from the get-go. To make this happen, your company must undertake the unfreezing, transition, and refreezing phases of change skilfully in order to bring all stakeholders into the right mindset.

Our specialists’ systematic and efficient methods for each of these phases are designed to simplify the management of each phase as well as provide a seamless shift from one phase to the next. This is what we’ll do:

  • Set up a change project management office to ensure that everything associated with the change initiative is given the needed attention and resources even while all the other usual processes in your organisation run concurrently.
  • To unfreeze your people and get them started on the road of change, we’ll employ unfreezing techniques wherever they are most appropriate. We’ll resort to different kinds of methods ranging from presenting persuasive evidence justifying the need for change to showing a motivational vision for inspiring your people to embark on the change process.
  • Since it is during the transition phase when your people can find themselves groping in the dark, we’ll offer executive coaches for your senior managers; facilitators to provide guidance during team meetings and other change activities; coaches to educate and inspire them to meet the change with the right attitude; trainers to teach new systems, procedures, and technologies; as well as employ a variety of other techniques in order to make the transition phase as seamless as possible.
  • Although your people should always be ready to undertake the next major change after a previous one, there should be points in between where they can taste the spirit of success, establish a temporary base to rejuvenate, and immediately gain a deeper understanding of the nearby terrain so as to envision the next rally point. We’ll see to it that this vital phase of change is carried out completely.
7 Challenges Facing Mobile Field Service ? And Overcoming them with FSM Solutions

Managing a mobile workforce comes with its set of challenges. There are multiple coordination levels, administrative hurdles when distributing tasks amongst your employees, the need to meet your customers? expectations, whilst still operating profitably. Your goal is to rake in more revenue, while striking a balance between the number of employees and the quality of the service being rendered. Under utilisation of the company resources may be misinterpreted to mean that you need more employees- which will affect your bottom line. Repeat visits with older jobs affect the response time for new client appointments. Clients get frustrated when their needs are not met on time. Remember that, for your client, their priority is getting their issue sorted- be it that pipe leak, electrical fault, damaged gas valve, or window installation completed on time. Administrative challenges on your end will simply come off as excuses, costing your brand dearly. The different fields share similar challenges- from utility firms, pest control, installation and repair services such as with plumbers and electricians, those running residential and commercial window cleaning companies, to property managers in charge of different buildings. Here are some of the obstacles faced:

1. Coordinating your team

Running things from the office can get hectic when your technicians are out on ground, and clients are at different locations. From appointments being delayed because the workers met traffic on their way, those calling in sick and requiring you to find replacements on short notice, clients who cancel appointments without notice- they all present a logistical nightmare. There is also the need to have a skill-based task distribution in place. Here, the focus is on getting the right technician for the job, not someone who has simply “dealt with it before as they helped their colleagues on a similar job“. With your firm having different personnel, you want to ensure that you spend the most appropriate technician to your client. This also aids the employees themselves, by increasing their morale as they will be dealing with tasks that they are particularly adept at, score you a high first-time fix rate, and avoid having to do follow up visits to resolve issues that were not properly addressed the first time round. 

Capterra undertook a field service software survey, which showed that 82% of organisations adopting FSM solutions saw an increased rate of first-time fixes, and a 90% rise in actual conversations from quotes.

Capterra

How field service job management software impacts businesses. Source: Capterra

 Follow-ups tend to cost extra with the additional dispatch, and take away your fiend agents from the work that had been scheduled to be handled. Resolving these logistical issues with traditional approaches can be problematic, especially with all the paperwork involved. In fact, let’s delve into that.

2. Mounds of paperwork

Having loads of data streaming in from your field workforce can put one on edge. Organising the documents, creating the spreadsheets and typing away at calculators, sorting the files in cabinets and the stress that comes when a single file appears lost in the heaps of sheets – it creates a bottleneck for your operations.  Manually handling the data at the central office also compromises on the accuracy of the process due to human error, from syntax issues when transferring information, incorrect inputs, to duplicate errors- which is expected to occur with increased frequency due to the tiring nature of the process. Actually, 46% of the respondents surveyed by the Service Council said that paperwork and admin work was the worst part of their day.

The field worker is also affected by the paperwork. From having to come to the office each morning to collect the documents needed for the day, walking with the bulky files from one site to another, perusing through lots of sheets whenever they want mire information about a particular customer or the job description- and the frustration that comes when some documents have been forgotten back at the office- it hampers productivity. Running out of copies of paper will also be unavoidable when your staff are away from the office- and more time will be spent coming back to restock. There are also additional issues like the forms getting soiled or torn, and even the wind blowing them away as your technicians are out in the field.  Dealing with the contracts, collecting signatures for each job that is handled, jotting down notes concerning the particular tasks that they are taking care of- it increases the workload. In fact, this often results in errors in data entry, and jobs being poorly documented.

Fortunately, this doesn’t have to be the case for your firm. Technological advancements have seen solutions being developed to minimise the paperwork involved. These mobile service management software allow the field worker to access all the details of the job via handy apps on their smartphones and tablets- as is the case with FieldElite. Instead of walking around with the documents and files, the information is stored via cloud, and is accessible in real-time. The job documentation- from photos, notes to the customer?s e-signature are all collected through the app, and the information is securely stored and immediately available to the personnel back at the head office. 

Service analytics- where you get to observe product demand, performance of your workforce and analyse your customer base growth through the dashboard reporting modules that come with the FMS software is a key tool for decision makers of the company. You get to optimise your performance without having to resort to adding more work hours, or pushing your employees into overtime. Field service analytics has been shown to increase profitability for leading companies by 18%, going by the ?Get Smart: Business Intelligence and Analytics for Service Organizations? study done by Aberdeen Group.

3. Scheduling conflicts

First, there are multiple jobs that need to be attended to- and disappointing your clients will lead to backlash. Secondly, you have a large team of workers- and you want to optimise on their productivity at an individual level. From an administrative perspective, you are also required to provide proper work structures that incorporate your employees? safety during the jobs being handled- and not to run them like mules, overworking them in a bid to hit your targets. Thirdly, the workers have different individual hours of operations- or they work in shifts. Running all this from a central point, allocating the jobs as needed and managing the different schedules, can be a tall order without the right field service scheduling software.

When your customers book an appointment, they expect that your company will deliver on its mandate, providing the services that they are paying you for as required. On the other hand, as the company, you are relying on your employees to meet those expectations. This means that you should have structures in place to ensure that your field workers stick to their assigned schedules. For this you will need to know their location in real-time, track their performance, and check on their adherence to the set schedules. Working with field service job management software allows you to handle the logistics of every task from one dashboard. By tracking your technicians while they are out in the field, you will be able to allocate orders faster, monitor the incoming customer requests, and manage the task distribution more efficiently. When you have an FSM that allows your workers to coordinate with the head office via mobile app, there will be an increased rate of job completion, and a reduction in overtime. Both your clients and employees get to be happy at the end of the day.

4. Lonely workers

Working in the office has its perks. You are surrounded by your colleagues, and can easily get the attention of anyone in management if needed. However, while out in the field, the workers can feel disconnected from the company structure, left to their devices while still bearing the responsibility of presenting the company in positive light- as they also double up as your brand ambassadors. The loneliness can get to them, with a report by the Service Council showing that isolation was the worst part of the work day for 21% of technicians. The chat feature that comes with the mobile service management software apps is one of the reasons behind their popularity, keeping the employees connected to the rest of the manager at the central office, and even other field employees- which makes them feel as part of one large family.

Safety is also a concern, especially for cases where your field staff will be working in hazardous situations – like conducting repairs on top of radio towers, dealing with gas equipment in concealed spaces. The central office needs to remain in constant communication with the workers, and have the appropriate structures in place to handle emergencies. You don’t want to lose employees because they don’t feel that their safety is a priority to you. A skilled technician is an asset that should be protected- and certainly you wouldn’t want to incur extra funds to hire and train personnel- which will end up being an additional strain to your budget over time. Field service job management software with features that allow your employees to check-in remotely via app will be handy in notifying the head office of their arrival at the job site, and in case of any incident, the field manager can quickly see the employees? last location, and dispatch help to them. 

5. Difficulty in assessing performance metrics

When you have a situation where timesheets are only handed in after the workday- and in some cases at the end of the week, it becomes difficult to assess the level of productivity of your field workers. Are you getting value for your money with the wages that are being paid out? Are there lots of lost work hours due to logistical hitches- or cases where the field worker delay the tasks, or take out sections of their day to attend to matters of personal interest- and still bill you for it? All this translates to poor customer service, with issues ranging from cancelled and rescheduled appointments, unmet targets, disagreements based on the scope of work being handled, to client dissatisfaction for not having their issues addressed in a timely manner- which becomes a hit on your brand.

FSM comes in to enable the field service manager to always be in the loop during the entire process- knowing exactly how long the workers are spending on each particular task, the jobs that are pending, cancelled or rescheduled, in order to constantly review and optimise the planning of the firm?s activities. With software like FieldElite, you even get a birds-eye view, as the work areas are mapped out, that way you will be in a position to direct your field workers on aspects like the best routes to take to avoid traffic gridlocks.

6. The break factor

How do you plan for breaks? Jobs are different, and there will be unexpected issues cropping up regularly. However, the field worker is still entitled to breaks during the working day- such as the all-important lunchtime. The problem arises when there is unextended time on some job sites, and cases of unscheduled breaks being taken. These have a ripple effect, as they will cause delays on other projects that are on queue, and you can also expect customer complaints to be coming in hot and hard. From a management point of view, you want to have the ability to respond to the issues as they arise, and reassign the jobs accordingly. Mobile service management software gives you this power.

7. Customer relationship management

Customers want to be part of the process, staying in the loop with the service appointments that have been scheduled- and understandably so. From the booking process, to following up on the progress of the job- it all factors in. In case there are issues that crop up- like service vehicles being delayed, situations where extra parts need to be ordered, or the session cancelled and scheduled on a different day- being fully transparent with your customers will be a great boost to your brand. Gaining new clients and retaining the current ones requires the firm to maintain a quality customer service.

Negative feedback because of your customers? feeling neglected will be a setback for your business. Integrating the customer relationship management into the field service will go a long way in enhancing their experience. Here, software solutions like FieldElite have also got you covered with a customer self-serve portal, accessible online through their browsers. This has the welcome benefit of reducing the number of calls as they conduct follow-ups, since they will be in a position to track the project right from the comfort of their homes and office desks, thus increasing customer satisfaction.

What Energy Management Software did for CDC

Chrome Deposit Corporation ? that’s CDC for short ? reconditions giant rollers used to finish steel and aluminium sheets in Portage, Indiana by applying grinding, texturing and plating methods. While management was initially surprised when the University of Delaware singled their plant out for energy assessment, this took them on a journey to bring energy consumption down despite being in an expansion phase.

Metal finishing and refinishing is an energy-intensive business where machines mainly do the work while workforces as small as 50 individuals tend them. Environmental impacts also need countering within a challenging environment of burgeoning natural gas and electricity prices.

The Consultant’s Recommendations

The University of Delaware was fortunate that Chrome Deposit Corporation had consistently measured its energy consumption since inception in 1986. This enabled it to pinpoint six strategies as having potential for technological and process improvements.

  • Insulate condensate tanks and pipes
  • Analyse flue gas air-fuel ratios
  • Lower compressed air pressures
  • Install stack dampers on boilers
  • Replace belts with pulleys and cogs
  • Fit covers on plant exhaust fans

CDC implemented only four of the six recommendations. This was because the boiler manufacturer did not recommend stack dampers, and the company was unable to afford certain process automation and controls.

Natural Gas Savings

The project team began by analysing stack gases from boilers used to heat chrome tanks and evaporate wastewater. They found the boilers were burning rich and that several joints in gas lines were leaking. Correcting these issues achieved an instant gas saving of 12% despite increased production.

Reduced Water Consumption

The team established that city water was used to cool the rectifiers. It reduced this by an astonishing 85% by implementing a closed-loop system and adding two chillers. This also helped the water company spend less on chemicals, and energy to drive pumps, purifiers and fans.

Summary of Benefits

Electricity consumption reduced by 18% in real terms, and natural gas by 35%. When these two savings are merged they represent an overall 25% energy saving. These benefits were implemented across the company?s six other plants, resulting in benefits CDC management never dreamed of when the University of Delaware approached them.

ecoVaro offers a similar data analytics service that is available online worldwide. We have helped other companies slash their energy bills with similarly exciting results. We?ll be delighted to share ideas that only data analytics can reveal.

Contact Us

  • (+353)(0)1-443-3807 – IRL
  • (+44)(0)20-7193-9751 – UK

Ready to work with Denizon?