Improving the effectiveness of (field) service maintenance with GenAI

Improving the effectiveness of (field) service maintenance with GenAI

Article Generative AI Data & AI

Organizations relying on (field) service maintenance are facing increasing challenges in ensuring quality of service and workforce continuity. New generations of employees tend to have shorter tenures with employers, while training the workforce in organization-specific maintenance tasks is both time-consuming and costly. This combination of changes makes it hard to secure domain knowledge and to keep service maintenance cost low. HR departments invest considerable time in retaining employees and recruiting new technicians to sustain operations. Naturally, organizations find it crucial to invest time and effort in productivity and efficiency of the workforce.

These challenges lead to the following questions: 

  1. How can work be made more attractive?
  2. How can new hires get onboarded faster?
  3. How can vacancies be filled by people with little or no specific maintenance background?

Becoming more efficient with AI

By enriching the maintenance process with artificial intelligence (AI), organizations can help their workforce become more efficient. New employees will have the institutional knowledge base at their disposal in an accessible manner, helping them become productive more rapidly, while the planning process can be better tailored to individual areas of interest, thereby enhancing employee satisfaction.

One of our last projects illustrates how generative AI tool can be harnessed to improve productivity: We have been working with the maintenance department of a local public transport organization to improve the workflow of their busy mechanics. The job of a mechanic is critical to keeping the fleet operational. Repairs and maintenance must be performed swiftly and adeptly so that services are not interrupted and so that unplanned maintenance is avoided. A major workflow bottleneck we have identified was the time-consuming reporting process: Mechanics must interact with a cumbersome interface to obtain the needed information for each maintenance job and then report on their findings and actions in a clear, succinct, but also informative manner.

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A Speech-to-Text GenAI solution

To save mechanics’ precious time in reporting and to increase the overall quality of maintenance reporting, we have developed a cutting-edge speech-to-text and automated report-making solution. The tool we built for our customer revolutionizes the reporting process by allowing mechanics to simply talk about their work into their phone, using an existing mechanics app, freeing up their time for more essential duties. The free speech is transcribed using a powerful speech to text model (Open AI Whisper). To ensure that the speech-to-text model recognizes technical terms, locations, specific jargon and even slang, an additional agent (Large Language Model guided by a prompt) oversaw repairing the text to increase its accuracy.

A report was then generated based on a template crafted by specialists, which then went through an additional review process to determine whether the initial spoken transcription was missing necessary elements dictated by the template. The mechanic is then asked to fill in the missing details to ensure the report is complete. This solution, while tailored specifically to the maintenance and repair division of public transit authorities, can be easily used in similar transit, logistics and maintenance divisions where reporting is part of the maintenance process.

Take the next step in your GenAI journey

With the current developments in Generative AI, the implementation of solutions of speech-to-text and automated report-making have become a lot easier, and there is significant added value in the results obtained in these applications. This solution allows a wider range of organizations to optimize their operations, and the period of getting an ROI is greatly reduced. Most importantly, these innovations provided an answer to challenges for which solutions were few and far between and difficult to realize.

Beyond public transit authorities, our company is well-positioned to assist clients in transportation, logistics, and maintenance sectors. Whether it is optimizing route planning, enhancing fleet management, or improving maintenance processes, our expertise in data and AI solutions is driving efficiency and innovation across various industries.

Our speech-to-text and automated report-making solution represents a significant step forward in modernizing maintenance reporting in public transit. By leveraging innovative technology, we empower tram mechanics to work smarter, not harder, while simultaneously improving data quality and standardization. As we continue to innovate and expand our solutions, we look forward to helping more clients achieve operational excellence and drive sustainable growth.

Reach out to us today to explore the next steps in your GenAI journey!