Managing Uncertainty – The Key To High First Time Fix Rates
To maintain high first time fix rates it’s essential to understand and manage uncertainty. It’s hard to predict exactly what will fail, and when, across a large property portfolio. And although improved data analysis tools are getting us closer to predictive diagnostics and proactive maintenance, we’re not quite there yet.
Osborne consistently exceeds first time fix rates of 85% across property services partnerships with multiple local authorities. A large factor in this performance is predicting what is likely to happen and being prepared.
Responsive repairs can affect just about any aspect of a home’s structure, fittings or services and happen at any time. Being prepared for any eventuality spans several aspects of property services delivery.
The process starts during contract mobilisation. We interrogate historical repair data to look for patterns and identify the most common failures and repairs. We also analyse what we know about stock condition and scheduled maintenance that has been performed to see if the trends are likely to continue or whether underlying issues have been resolved.
Once we have a clearer picture of the most common repairs we ensure that our vehicles are stocked appropriately and that the supply chain is geared up to maintain stock levels through our hubs.
Training and development plans prioritise high-frequency repairs so that we have a large pool of appropriately and multi-skilled operatives.
Training of contact centre staff is equally important. They play a vital role in accurate reporting and initial diagnosis – so that jobs are allocated to people with the right skills and that operatives know exactly what’s needed before they reach the person’s home.
The process is underpinned by digital technologies that improve communication and collect data to help evolve a more proactive service. Our contact centre teams use Microsoft Dynamics 365 (MD365) to diagnose each repair and make appointments.
SMS texts are used to confirm appointments and appointment reminders. Operatives also contact residents 45 minutes before appointments to check they are home. This helps eliminate another major area of uncertainty – will anybody be in to provide access?
The repair team sends work orders to operatives’ smartphones and monitors progress in real-time through our appointment system. Supervisors carry out ‘pre’, ‘in progress’ and ‘post’ inspections to ensure that we maintain performance levels and resident satisfaction.
Osborne maintains high first time fix rates because our service delivery is geared around achieving that goal. We set out to identify all of the factors that could prevent a first time fix and then systematically implement measures to minimise the chances of those eventualities occurring.
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