How to Transform Warranty Management

Ask yourself, and your team, the right questions

Keeping an eye on that digital future can be especially daunting when you’re dealing with legacy warranty management systems.

In many cases, existing systems may have been purpose-built to manage warranties over a decade or two ago. If you’re fortunate, there may still be someone within the organization who was part of the team who built it—they pull the right levers and turn the necessary dials to keep it running. In other cases, the stakeholders who rely on that legacy system have discovered the workarounds to do their jobs, but it’s far from optimal. Claims fall through the cracks, quality and turnaround time plummet, and your warranty manager spends weekends swivel-chairing between software systems to merge the sales and claims data for a report they need.

Like your hot water heater at home, it’s tempting to try to extend its life for as long as possible. But that’s a risky proposition: When the inevitable happens and things go wrong, they will go very wrong and ultimately be much more costly. The same is true of your legacy warranty management system.

The top five questions to ask about your legacy warranty system

If you’re in charge of warranty, building a business case for a new warranty management system starts with asking the right questions and presenting answers to key stakeholders. These include:

  1. What needs to improve? Identify the functional and financial differences between your current state and modernization. This should include how the organization benefits internally, how the product improves, and how customer satisfaction may increase.
  2. What will you save? Obviously, there will be an upfront cost around modernization. Focus on how quickly you’ll reach the breakeven point and start saving over a realistic timeframe.
  3. What needs to change? Upgrading your warranty management system must work with the organization’s overall transformation goals. Identify what must change now vs. nice-to-have improvements.
  4. Who needs to be involved? Build a list of stakeholders, from IT colleagues who will need to maintain a new system and the warranty manager to organizational leadership, to leaders of key functional areas that integrate with warranty management, as well as suppliers, distributors, and dealers.
  5. What does success look like? In addition to what you’ll save, how else will the new warranty management system benefit the organization? Coming up with these key performance indicators will take some digging and collaboration with the stakeholders you identify.

Better warranty management isn’t just about claims and cost

Modernizing your warranty management experience will douse many of the internal fires that result from a legacy system. But beyond that, it acts as the cornerstone that helps drive higher margin revenues from loyal customers who get a better warranty experience. Customer-centric manufacturers are embracing this digital future for that reason, and you are uniquely positioned to champion and drive the transformation.

Ultimately, customers suffer and the manufacturer’s focus on customer service is derailed before it has a chance to gain traction. Have you heard this before, “But we don’t have the resources to modernize warranty management now?”

Your role in becoming the hero of the story is building a business case for an end-to-end warranty lifecycle management system.

From your perspective, the writing is on the wall: Your team spends too much time and resources trying to make an end-of-life system work. Moving to a SaaS-based model with a partner who can assume the burden of hosting, maintenance, and backups will save time and money.

To get help building a business case for updating your warranty system, contact us.