Interviewing Tips for Field Service
This is Part II of a series on “Tips for Techs” covering various interviewing tips to either enter the field service profession or seek a better role as an experienced FSE or Technician
- Remember, field service technicians and engineers do far more than just technical tasks like install, calibrate and repair.
- They are also:
- the company brand ambassador when face to face with the customer
- lead generator for products and services or maybe even the direct salesperson for service agreements, promotions
- problem solver for the customer
- self-starting and independent worker who is responsible for achieving productivity goals
- technology user of service management systems, mobile devices, and many other important company systems and applications to make their company enterprise function correctly
- well-trained in safety, use of specialized equipment and protector of company assets
- careful and thorough inventory manager for their assign spare parts stock
- team player who is resourceful, helpful and communicative with their team and supervisor
Part II of this series is to cover the Technical qualifications aspect of interviewing for a field service role
With the overview in mind, let’s shift to now focus on tips to talk about your technical qualifications. The interview will most likely start with a review of your technical education and experiences. There are many critical factors for your technical qualifications to do the field service job, many of which require expertise in specific technical disciplines such as electronics, PLC programing, specific trade experience, etc.
First, keep in mind your interest for the correct fit for you and the company.
- Do you like inside or outside work?
- Do you like to work on larger machinery or more comfortable with precision instruments, software and applications? Same with the tools and equipment you will use.
- Do you want to wear a uniform, drive a branded service truck or do you prefer personal clothing and a company car type role?Some of this may arise in selecting you for an interview based on your current role, and past experiences, but it’s good to establish the basis for your preferences on the technical nature of this open position.
Now, let’s shift to being best prepared for the specific questions and topics you can bring up to differentiate you from other candidates. These points below are the critical technical approaches to field service beside your essential troubleshooting and proficiency. These elements are critical to function effectively in the field and differentiate your customer service and productivity from others.
- Explain how you mastered the products or tasks you were assigned. It’s one thing to complete a formal training course, it’s another level to recognize all the potential tasks that a field technician must accomplish on their assigned product lines. Here is another aspect, field service includes not just current production units you may have been trained on, but numerous older units and models that are part of the same product line that you still need to service. And some roles require you to work on other brands with no formal training. Be prepared to detail how you have technical qualifications related to the following technical tasks you may be assigned for a product:
- Operator training
- Networking your product with another system
- Software applications run on your equipment
- Preventative Maintenance
- Diagnosis and troubleshooting
- Major assembly replacements
- Overhauls, refurbishments
- Upgrades and retrofits
- How do you prepare for a field service call? Tell how you may look up the service history or inquire with another tech. Find out if this is a repeat service call to gauge the customer attitude and level of frustration. Tell how you ensure you have the proper documentation, tools and equipment before departing for the site. Check your spare parts inventory for what you might need. Again, all relative to the service request type listed above.
- Tell how you expect to be the expert in the room while on-site for that product or if still in training, have your resources connected with you while on-site.
- Tell how you represent the company brand and that you take pride in being worth what the service agreement or hourly rate the customer is paying for your expertise.
In the next blog, we will be about Customer Relations, another key aspect of field service.