How to Build a Best-in-Class Service Strategy

It’s no surprise that a happy customer is a loyal customer – and the kind of service they receive is crucial to their happiness.

A recent Aberdeen report State of Service Management Forecast for 2012 found that organizations with a customer satisfaction and retention level of over 90 percent outperformed others in terms of service margins (32 percent vs. 27 percent) and service revenue growth (7.4 percent vs. 4.1 percent) over 12 months.

This tells us that a satisfied customer is one who continues to purchase more products and services, providing a steady revenue stream. It’s not rocket science.

But service is about more than a cheerful smile. Organizations today are faced with myriad issues that need to be addressed before they can offer a best-in-class “service strategy”.

Challenges include:

  • Increasing visibility into service performance across all levels of the organization,
  • Improving the integration between service functions such as field service, customer support and parts management
  • Integrating technology and automation platforms to ensure a unified, accurate and complete view of the customer throughout the entire service lifecycle

Evidence shows that organizations scoring highest on the customer satisfaction scale also tend to stress the integration of technology and automation platforms as part of their service strategy.

Capturing data and using analytics throughout the entire service lifecycle ensures a unified, accurate and complete view of the customer and their product. Using historical data and analyzing information helps an organization understand a customer’s service event.

By applying and sharing knowledge across the organization and within service departments the right information can be gathered, proper diagnose of a problem made, and the service technician can perform like an expert. In turn, this improves first-time fix rates—meaning your customer is happy and your service technician is free to move onto other service calls.

More and more manufacturers are realizing the value of a great service strategy and are increasingly focused on helping their customers achieve higher value throughout the total lifecycle of their products.

The downstream benefits speak for themselves – loyal customers who share their experiences with peers help to bring in new business, contribute a healthy revenue stream from their continued purchases, and provide an organization with up-sell opportunity. And those simple factors all tie back to profitability.

Does your company currently use technology to capture and analyze historical product data as part of your service strategy? What if anything, have your learned from it?

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