Two colleagues review their IT coordination duties.

Mar 30, 2023 12:00:00 PM | FieldFlex Going Direct-to-Tech: A Guide to IT Coordination

While going direct-to-tech can bring plenty of benefits, it comes with its own set of IT coordination challenges.

Businesses are currently tightening their belts and looking for ways to cut costs. From talks of an impending global recession to shrinking budgets and mass layoffs becoming the norm, the market is causing many organizations to downsize or pull the plug on otherwise successful IT projects.

For example, companies are transitioning away from third-party providers in favor of hiring their own technicians directly or leveraging a contingent labor platform like Field Nation or WorkMarket. While going direct-to-tech can bring plenty of benefits, it also comes with its own set of IT coordination challenges. 

4 Benefits of Engaging Field Service Techs Directly

Hiring techs directly can present multiple challenges , including sourcing, vetting, and hiring technicians; managing the service outcome without third-party support; and coordinating complex IT deployments. So, is going direct-to-tech worth it? Here are four benefits of engaging techs directly.

#1 Going Direct-to-Tech Can Increase Margins 

When clients work with large IT Service Providers it is important to understand the process by which they engage third-party providers to deliver the solution. The more third-party providers there are in the delivery of the service means there are additional costs you must bear. This  results in a phenomenon known as margin stacking.

Margin stacking occurs when multiple companies are involved in delivering a service or product, each adding its margin to the final cost. In the case of IT field services, an IT Service Provider may subcontract work to a regional third-party provider, who then subcontracts to a local company.

Each subcontractor will take their slice of the pie, adding their own margin to the final cost. As a result, many companies have to give up quality to align pricing to expectations.

Going direct-to-tech can increase margins since it cuts out the middleman. Instead of working through an IT Service Provider or a third-party provider who may subcontract the work, you can reduce the number of players involved and hire technicians directly. While managing the techs yourselves requires more IT coordination, the margin improvement can be substantial–upwards of 25% or more.

#2 You Get to Own the Final Outcome

When you hire a third-party provider for field services support, you rely on that provider to take responsibility for the outcome of that service.

However, when you go directly to the technician, you get to own the outcome. This allows you to recruit, vet, deploy, and manage the field technicians that are best suited to deliver your solution. The benefit is you are able to potentially grow your margin beyond your historically outcome-based service delivery model. The downside is you are now responsible for coordinating every aspect of the engagement. 

This means you need coordination resources to handle not only the recruiting and vetting of technicians, but tracking every aspect of your deployment. Depending on the complexity, delivery timelines, and SLAs of your deployment project, you may require numerous resources to fully manage the technicians and the events from start to finish. 

Without the support of a third-party provider, many companies struggle to juggle all of these tasks. If they cannot manage the outcome effectively, it can lead to delays, additional costs, and dissatisfied customers.

As an organization, you must consider whether you have the resources and expertise to handle IT coordination from start to finish or would be better off working with a third-party provider who can provide the much-needed support and expertise.

#3 You Make Complex Engagements Look Easy to Your Customer  

While hiring technicians directly can cut down on your costs, it takes a lot of time and effort to coordinate them. IT deployments can be highly complex, often involving many discrete steps  and technical aspects. When it comes to managing these deployments, companies need to have someone by their side who can manage the process from start to finish.

Sourcing, vetting, and assigning qualified technicians to the proper job site takes careful IT coordination. Without the right technicians, the deployment is unlikely to run smoothly, potentially resulting in delays and additional costs. Companies must have a system for referring, resolving, and escalating any issues that arise during the deployment.

In addition to sourcing and assigning technicians, companies also need to ensure that their field service technicians are properly prepared before they arrive on-site. Besides providing them with all the information they need to complete the job, you must ensure they have the necessary equipment and tools.

Managing IT deployments also requires purchasing and scheduling any equipment needed during the project. For example, something as simple as coordinating with vendors to prepare a crane lift to fit and place digital menu boards can become a complicated effort. Without the right equipment, the deployment is unlikely to be successful, leading to additional costs and delays. 

#4 Utilize Cost-Effective Third-Party IT Coordination To Deliver Superior Quality  

Project coordinators manage individual technicians and keep IT projects running on schedule and within budget. They are essential players on any service delivery team. 

Many companies, however, do not have a coordinator on staff when they decide to manage their technicians directly. Yet, they fear using third-party IT coordination will result in the dreaded margin stacking we mentioned previously. But that is not the case. 

Hiring a third-party project coordinator does not necessarily mean margin stacking or lengthy recruitment processes. Instead, a service offering like FieldFlexSM from Kinettix is perfectly positioned to help your company achieve scale on demand using your pre-existing tools and processes. 

FieldFlexSM: On-Demand IT Coordination

Managing field service technicians directly comes with a host of challenges. You need to source, vet, assign qualified technicians, and manage outcomes — all while coordinating complex IT deployments. Fortunately, companies looking to scale on demand can turn to Kinettix's FieldFlex program for support.

With FieldFlex, you leverage Kinettix's highly-trained project coordinators to quickly and easily scale your team as needed. Whether you need additional resources for a large deployment or support for a smaller project, FieldFlex provides the necessary resources and IT coordination expertise to streamline your IT deployment from start to finish.

Contact Kinettix today to learn how our extensive global network and FieldFlex services can add IT coordination resources to meet your business and project demands.

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Lisa Cook

Written By: Lisa Cook

With more than 30 years in the technology field, Lisa has deep experience overseeing the design, analysis, implementation, deployment and support of varying sizes and complexities of technology initiatives across a broad range of industries. Her experience has allowed her to provide all aspects of technology deployment support to national and global clients such as Walgreens, Ulta Beauty, Office Max, Walmart, Blockbuster, American Eagle, Chrysler, Simon Property Group, and CBL & Associates. As the founder of OPL Technologies, Lisa is an integral part of the Kinettix Team due to her expertise in designing and managing complex multi-site technology deployments. She is the author of the recently released book “Designing Retail Success: A Blueprint for Designing Retail Technology Deployments.”