FSM software helps businesses manage the on-site requests for their products and services.
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FSM software helps businesses manage the on-site requests for their products and services. The software assists users in the following types of field service jobs:
Jump to the following sections for a quick look:
FSM software is a platform that allows field service businesses to obtain, track, monitor, and complete work orders. The software is a mixture of solutions such as the following:
In the process of finding the right software for your business, you should first understand the types of field service solutions in the market. Listed below are the main types of field service software:
Residential field service software: These solutions manage field service jobs on residential properties. Examples include residential pest control, house electrical works, and air-conditioning installation.
Commercial field service software: This software helps field service businesses that cater to commercial properties. Examples include equipment repair and servicing as well as industrial cleaning services.
While these are the major categories of field service software, there can also be an overlap. Some products may cater to both residential and commercial properties.
Key question to ask your vendor before you buy: Does your product support my line of business?
Once you’ve decided the type of field service management software you need, the next step is to select the right deployment model. There are two major options that you can choose:
Cloud-based deployment: Solutions that offer this option are hosted on the vendor's servers and can be accessed from web browsers. The characteristics of a cloud-based solution are listed below:
On-premise deployment: These solutions are better suited for businesses that have the resources and staff to manage their IT infrastructure such as deployment, customization, and data management.
Here are some of the features of on-premise FSM solutions:
Key question to ask your vendor before you buy: What are the additional costs apart from the monthly subscription fee or license costs?
The next step is to understand the field service software features so that you can shortlist products based on your business needs. In this section, we’ve covered the essential features that you should look for when evaluating an FSM solution.
Work order management: Tracks and monitors the progress of all the jobs. Users can track the status of their scheduled, ongoing, and completed jobs in a dashboard view.
Scheduling and dispatching: Collects your phone and online appointments to schedule employee calendars. You can make real-time schedule adjustments to account for emergency jobs and other such situations.
Billing and invoicing: Manages customer balances and send invoices for payments. Some systems also include mobile payments, which eliminate the need for paper invoices.
Client management: Records, tracks, and analyzes customer contacts, job histories, and payment details. Users can also create email campaigns to remind customers about routine maintenance jobs.
Key question to ask your vendor before you buy: Are the features you offer relevant to my field service business?
Note: The applications shown here are examples to show a feature in context and are not intended as endorsements or recommendations.
Small businesses use a variety of business applications such as CRM, accounting, and marketing automation software. For this reason, syncing all the data from these applications is really important. Without seamless integration, users will have to manually transfer data between the applications. This makes the process time-consuming and prone to error.
To get the best out of your FSM solution, ensure that it integrates with the business applications that you currently use. Here are the application integrations you should seek out:
Payment processing: This integration allows field service businesses to accept payments using different methods such as credit cards, debit cards, and online transactions. Some of the popular solutions for integration are Stripe and PayPal.
CRM integration: It integrates contacts from the FSM solution to the CRM system. This allows you to manage your marketing campaigns from the CRM solution.
Key question to ask your vendor before you buy: Which of our existing software can seamlessly integrate with your product?
Now that you’ve understood the common features and integrations, the next step is to evaluate the advanced features. We haven’t labeled these features as “common”, but some of these could be vital to your business.
For instance, if your business operates a call center for customer complaints and inquiries, you should opt for the call center functionality. It will help you manage customer queries directly from the FSM software.
Here are some advanced features you should check out:
Key question to ask your vendor before you buy: What are the industry-specific features in your product that are relevant to my field service business?
Some recent technological developments are disrupting FSM software market. Adopting some of these technologies can give you a competitive edge in the market. This is why you should be aware of the following trends:
Key question to ask your vendor before you buy: Which features in your product are currently using AI and IoT technologies and what are the future prospects?
We have referenced the following documents while creating this guide: