Equipment dealers make more money on service and maintenance on machinery and equipment than on the initial sales. Margins on sales have come under pressure in recent years, while the revenues from service and maintenance contracts are becoming increasingly interesting. Thorough automation of the field service department helps you to increase service revenues.
Customers demand top quality service
In 2019, customers expect the service department is easy to contact, will help immediately and will deliver top quality service. If you don’t, there is always a competitor that can meet the customer’s expectations and is willing to take over the service and maintenance work. Decent field service automation is a must-have to provide top quality service. By automating service contracts, you can schedule every inspection and preventive maintenance job on time and efficiently. With information about the location, skillset and availability of technicians you can assign work orders to the most appropriate resource. And the field service application provides the technician a complete overview of the customer, the object and the job that needs to be done.
The right technician with the right spare parts
When equipment no longer functions (properly), this often costs the customer money. In many cases it means that work can no longer continue, projects are delayed, or extra costs need to be incurred to put other machines to work. That is why it is very important for customers that the service department solves problems quickly and the first time. You need a technician available immediately who has the right skills and the right spare parts. Automation helps you select the most appropriate technician and check whether this technician has all the required spare parts. By collecting data about malfunctions, problems and work orders and analyzing this data, you also get an increasingly better overview of which spare parts and service jobs are required for specific malfunctions and problems.
Provide an excellent service experience
Service technicians can in some way be regarded as account managers. They regularly visit your customers, build relationships with people and are perfectly aware of what is going on at the customer’s organization. That provides opportunities! And with the right field service solution, you can make better use of these opportunities. Enable service technicians to immediately create new work order (quotes), have the customer sign off and e-mail service reports. With a field service application, technicians can also see which other equipment objects need maintenance as well or need to be replaced on short notice. With that information they can approach the customer proactively. This personal and proactive attitude strengthens the relationship with the customer, increases customer satisfaction and increases your chances on new sales deals.
Conclusion: for many dealers, the sale of equipment is more often the foot in the door. Although the sales deal itself does not necessarily bring in a lot of money, this is the starting point of a relationship with the customer that is very profitable in the long term through the revenues from service, parts sales and new equipment sales.
Arend Jan Boersma is Senior Consultant at Dysel and specialized in optimizing and automating (field) service processes.