Three Surprising Ways Usage Based Maintenance Can Improve Your Field Service Operations

In my previous blog, I provided an overview of preventive maintenance, described how it saves you money, and provided some information on how usage based maintenance (UBM) is superior to time based maintenance on a large scale. In this blog, I will describe how UBM maintenance enhances your field service operations.

Just as a refresher, there are two common types of Preventive Maintenance, including time based maintenance (change your oil after three months) and usage based (change your oil after 5000 miles). For organizations like heavy equipment dealers or oil and gas companies, one of the reasons usage based maintenance is advantageous in comparison to time based maintenance is that it avoids over-maintenance of assets that are lightly used and accelerates maintenance on assets that are used more intensely.

Here are additional benefits of usage based maintenance that you may have not considered:

Maintain and Grow Business:

Preventive maintenance helps you keep equipment available and running at its best. UBM decreases the likelihood of equipment failure (keeping your assets generating revenue) while ensuring the equipment is not over maintained (needlessly taking money out of your pocket).

For your personal car, it is recommended to change your oil after so many miles or after so much time, whichever comes first. But when we’re talking fleets of heavy equipment, some used daily and others used monthly, you need to be more strategic with how you maintain these assets.

Having your equipment down when it shouldn’t can even cost you deals. Hitachi once worked with a manufacturer and services provider for pipeline maintenance equipment; they sought out our field service management solution after they lost a $1 million deal because a critical piece of equipment was offline and down for corrective maintenance. As the result of not having their asset when they need it, they lost revenue from that net-new service work.

Build Better Relationships with Clients

According to Aberdeen Group’s research article “Move Beyond Just Scheduling to Drive Field Service Excellence,” 78% of manufacturing organizations listed “increase customer satisfaction” as was one of their top four desired outcomes.  By conducting usage based preventive maintenance rather than reactive maintenance, your organization is better positioned to make a positive impression on clients by showing up on time with the right field assets in good working order to get the job done.

Even in the best of circumstances—no client is thrilled when your field technician is servicing a piece of equipment that has broken down. This occurrence has thrown a monkey wrench into the productivity of their organization, sometimes on a very large scale. On the other hand, when you send out a scheduled technician to service machinery before it breaks down, it provides a better environment for the field technician to make a positive and lasting impression of your organization on the client.

In fact, under these positive circumstances, a scheduled maintenance call can even provide an opportunity for the field technician to gain additional business for your organization. In the aforementioned Aberdeen Group article it notes, “More than half of the Best-in-Class (57%) and 56% of manufacturing organizations have begun to incent technicians for identification of cross-sell and up-sell opportunities as they interact with customers.” By doing preventive maintenance, you’re not only creating the right environment for your organization to make a good impression on a client, you’re also creating a better atmosphere for your field technicians to sell products and services.

Keep Yourself Covered

For many heavy equipment dealers or oil and gas companies, there are certain legal requirements that state how equipment must be kept up to standard. When we talk to our field service clients, many have decided to get our Field Service Automation solution to not only avoid safety incidents due to improperly maintained equipment, but also because our UBM capabilities provide documented proof that the equipment has been maintained to manufacturer-specified standards (which is often a requirement). Without properly maintaining equipment, companies are leaving themselves open to costly health and safety issues, regulatory violations or potential lawsuits.

Whether your organization rents out equipment or services its own equipment, a safety incident that can be tracked back to your poorly maintained equipment is not good for business. Even if things don’t go as far as legal action, it doesn’t sit well for your reputation if you’re always having to conduct reactive maintenance.


So here you have it, three reasons usage based maintenance is a great option for organizations that maintain equipment on a large scale. Hopefully these reasons will help you in your future decision making process for maintaining your equipment.