In today’s rapidly evolving business landscape, customers have increasingly high expectations of service quality and demand better experiences and services. Your customers are taking cues from their lives outside of work—think Amazon, Apple, and other organizations that have their services dialed in—and they’re adjusting their service expectations accordingly while at work. The need to shift to accommodate these new demands is especially relevant for industrial equipment (IE) organizations, which must deliver more value to keep their customers.
According to a recent survey on the current state of aftermarket service, 85% of service and supply chain leaders across Europe and the United States who responded agree that meeting aftermarket service customer expectations is often or always challenging. Customer service is evolving, and service organizations must recognize that traditional business models are no longer as effective. To stay competitive, service leaders have to create a customer-centric experience that puts the customer at the center of the service being delivered, increases efficiency and delivers faster, more transparent results.
The self-service evolution
Self-service stands out as we start identifying trends that will be prevalent in a post-pandemic world. As a result of social distancing, more people became interested in troubleshooting and gaining firsthand access to the technical knowledge that could help with faster resolution.
With self-service tools such as virtual assistants (VAs), customers can chat with their questions and receive faster insights and answers, reducing wait times for customer service calls and improving resolution time and the overall customer experience. With these options available, customers can answer their own questions and receive immediate support when and where they need it.
Moreover, when these processes are connected and the self-service system is truly integrated into the larger service lifecycle, it enhances every aspect of the service organization. The customer data and insights gained help service leaders create better customer journeys and enable these organizations to provide more value to their customers in every interaction.
Streamlining processes to improve visibility and optimize internal resources
An added challenge for IE organizations is the increasing complexity of product ordering and delivery. The inventory management process has become more convoluted with multiple brands and vendors providing different necessary parts.
However, with a connected, digitized ecosystem that offers more transparency into this process, all stakeholders can easily track and manage orders, reducing the need for direct customer service interaction, saving time and freeing up internal resources.
A connected, digitized ecosystem also supports the self-service capabilities that have become so important for IE organizations. Customer issues are more effectively prioritized, frequently asked questions are swiftly answered and employee skills can be put to use where they can bring the most value to the organization. By streamlining operations and maximizing efficiency, self-service reduces costs while improving customer satisfaction with faster resolution times.
Responding to intensifying cost pressures
As cost pressures continue to intensify, IE organizations must digitize their operations to become more efficient. Self-service and VAs respond to this challenge by freeing up internal resources to increase operational efficiency, streamlining customer support to save time and increase customer satisfaction and maximizing operational efficiency. A digitized backbone to service helps OEMs elevate their parts pricing strategy for competitive advantage and greater profitability, which affects inventory planning, ordering and delivery.
Ultimately, a connected service ecosystem is the key to success in this new landscape. With a truly integrated and streamlined system in place, OEMs and distributors can optimize their service offerings and meet their customers’ evolving needs. When service organizations invest in improving their digital service capabilities, they see significant improvements in customer satisfaction levels, lower customer churn and increased brand loyalty, decreasing costs to serve by as much as 50%.
A connected ecosystem for planning, pricing, and service
IE organizations must reorient their business models around the customer to remain competitive in today’s economic landscape and meet ever-evolving customer expectations. With a comprehensive view of customer needs and preferences, service organizations can deliver products, equipment and services that exceed expectations. Self-service tools are key components, and a connected, integrated ecosystem is essential.
The Syncron Connected Service Experience (CSX) Cloud platform is a streamlined solution that enables manufacturers to provide exceptional aftermarket service experiences that improve the customer journey and boost profitability. It delivers integrated and connected solutions for planning, pricing and service, resulting in streamlined processes, greater visibility and strong customer loyalty through enhanced experiences.
With Syncron, IE organizations can improve transparency at all touchpoints of the service experience, reduce churn, deliver faster, more efficient results and exceed customer expectations. Learn more about our service lifecycle management solutions.