What makes perfect service

The desire to provide customers with a positive experience and impressions of interaction with the brand at all stages unites all departments and their employees in the company. They now have in their hands a tool that previously served the tasks of economy. Innovative IT solutions automate and “heal” many processes, but they are not a panacea. If a company does not have a system, Customer Experience or CX strategies based on even the most sophisticated tools will be ineffective.

My name is Maxim, I am a HubEx Analyst Methodologist and CTO of Service Departments with over 10 years of experience. At HubEx, we help companies move from “putting out fires” to systematic work based on analytics and planning, optimizing and automating processes.

An interesting trend

It is observed in the market today, where the financial, real and IT sectors compete with each other for the “love” of the client. At the same time, which is funny, in the sector all these three rivals use the achievements of information technology. The use of technology in the service sector has become the standard. There are several reasons for this. IT systems help to control quality, stay in direct contact with the client, and also reduce the cost of work by 20% on average.

That is why IT developers in the last couple of years have been very cheerfully either creating their own or acquiring existing service enterprises, and then “pumping up” them with their digital gadgets. As a result, IT companies have entered into a full-fledged struggle for the consumer in the service market.

At the same time, companies that have traditionally dominated the market, stimulated by such enthusiasm from the developer, are themselves urgently and unconsciously expanding and developing their IT competencies so that customers already spoiled by technology do not run away. Just look at the competitive dances of Yandex and Sberbank! And then it will be even hotter and more fun, because both medium and small businesses, and even such conservatives as engineering enterprises, have already been carried away into a round dance. Now IT is being implemented so that the company exists in principle, and not just gets some kind of head start.

For consideration before implementing an IT system

There are a few things to consider carefully before automating service desk workflows with IT.

IT systems are not omnipotent, although they are an excellent tool. But they are of no use, there are no plans, goals, and work processes are not built. After all, the systems will be conscientiously managed with initially “curved” inputs.

  • “Without a specific TK, the result will be …”, well, then you know. When the one who integrates the system does not have a list of your requirements, processes and tasks, you end up with an “author’s vision” and is unlikely to be optimal for you. Employees of your company are guaranteed to raise a rebellion against the use of IT systems, because they do not make their lives easier. On the contrary, automation will be perceived as tyranny and a new way of ubiquitous control. So you need to choose an integrator as carefully as you write a technical task for him.

  • You can want change with all your might, but not be ready for it. In order for automation to “sprout”, it must be planted in the soil fertilized by system work with resource planning and a KPI accounting scheme. Service and sales strategies, interactions with customers will not “go bad” in the wrong climate. If it is decided that it is with the service that you attract the consumer, then be kind enough to ensure the quality of what you plan to make money from. Without agreement with the management, and in principle, it is impossible to offer the client a service as a free add-on.

It is quite possible to combine both goals of service – to earn and retain customers. But at the same time, the service must be attractive, and therefore first-class. A customer who is satisfied with the quality of work done the first time, invests in service without any problems. In this case, the price is perceived as fair for the client, and the service as the company’s benefit from the purchased equipment.

Sequence of events

The sequence of building a great service is as follows:

  • System work.

  • General sales and marketing strategy.

  • Implementing IT tools.

Setting up a systematic work in the service sector requires the knowledge, experience, investment and enthusiasm of the company’s management. The latter, as a rule, are totally occupied with current tasks, emergency measures: reports, conflict resolution, customer requests and staff unrest. Where to find time to automate processes or create a system?

It is hardly worth waiting for a hot initiative from employees. Firstly, they are not business owners, therefore they prefer to conscientiously carry out their current tasks according to the usual scheme. Moreover, it is such work that ensures the viability of the company. Implementing automation, developing competitiveness is the responsibility of business owners and management. It happens, of course, that the managers of the service department initiate changes, but this is not a trend.

Following the proposed scheme will ensure the transition to systemic work by only 70%. Otherwise, everything will depend on the professionalism and coherence of the team, their initiatives and knowledge, and the corporate culture as a whole. If you get down to business friendly and with the right management, then you can not only transfer the company to a new track in a matter of months, but also catch up with the market leaders in terms of service. The “newcomers” are able to bypass traditional brands, which even in B2B customers do not give their preferences to, but are increasingly turning to alternative vendors.

How to identify system work

It should be noted that where systematic work is established and processes are transferred to the “figure”, and marketing strategies are implemented quickly. This is the first “call” for the audit of the service company. And the rest of the signs of systemic work are as follows:

The structure of the business is consistent with its tasks.

  • The staff is loaded with work evenly and according to plan, there are no bottlenecks.

  • Each employee has his own functions and area of ​​responsibility.

  • Business processes are built, they have a visual expression and are subject to regular review and improvement.

  • The tasks in the overall strategy are divided into tactical and operational, as a result of which each work unit clearly understands what actions to take, why and how they affect the result.

  • There is a well-established KPI system, where salary and goal go hand in hand. Long-term programs for motivation and professional development have been created and are working.

  • Service investment, NPS, and sales are linked. Budget deviations are no more than 15%.

Customer Experience Strategy

When the company has built work processes and a system, on this basis it is already possible to establish interaction between departments. Consolidation of sales and service is clearly reflected in the efficiency of the business as a whole. But on the condition that these two services operate according to the same CX strategy. In principle, in order to implement competent customer experience management, all departments of the company must work in conjunction.

The point of the CX strategy is that we think ahead and prepare all the necessary resources and technologies for each of the touchpoints. Together with the client, we go from finding a need using advertising, articles, to choosing a specific product or supplier and closing a deal. And at each point we focus on the desire of the person and the proposals of competitors. It is important to make sure that the client from your company always receives at least a little, but more, all the way. For example, a free equipment installation scheme, employee training, maintenance. At the same time, the shareware service is already integrated into the cost of the equipment and so cleverly that it looks profitable against the background of price lists from competitors.

An individual approach to clients has been practiced for a long time, especially in b2b. But now it has received development and a “second wind” thanks to IT systems. The combination of CX strategy and the power of IT makes it possible not to specialize in any particular market segment, but to work with many segments, even if customer requirements are very different. This greatly increases the customer base and sales.

Today, an individual approach to each client is very popular in business, especially in the B2B market. But recently it has received a second wind, thanks to the introduction of IT systems. Their consolidation with the CX strategy allows you to go beyond certain market segments, which significantly increases the number of customers, and hence profits.

Personalized customer service

Alas, there is no universal approach to clients in different market segments. It is necessary to adapt in the course of work and for each. Specialization is important – using different techniques for different clients.

This troublesome issue is easily solved by IT systems, with which it is easier to find an individual approach for each client, taking into account their priorities. Rather than keep dozens of motley terms of contracts in your head or on paper, it is much more convenient to transfer them to the system, which itself will place the necessary accents and set out the regulations for both company personnel and technicians.

For example, FSM systems are capable of implementing countless scenarios. And in combination with BPM, used to connect different departments of the company, you don’t even need to “finish” FSM and involve programmers.

More and more companies are automating processes with the help of IT. When system work is set up and internal processes are aligned, digital tools help to align everything and consolidate it as a standard, leveling the opportunity for staff to be self-willed. Sometimes employees can overdo it and make a mistake, losing a client in the process. The staff focuses on their own KPIs, in their “garden”, without having an overview of the general state of affairs of the company. But only management has the authority to monitor the status and effectiveness of work, control and change processes. At least, this is what happens in companies where there is a system, the right strategy and modern IT tools. And the FSM software is a reference example.

Let’s simulate the situation

Some equipment is defective. The client, by scanning the QR code, sends a message or application in the application or on the website. The system accepts it and automatically finds the nearest suitable specialist according to the following criteria:

  • knowledge about this particular equipment;

  • the availability of the necessary spare parts and tools;

  • location closest to the client;

  • relatively low workload, etc.

There can be a lot of inputs.

When a work order is assigned to a technician, the accounting department automatically receives information for issuing travel allowances, a chatbot, if necessary, books a transfer, and GPS generates a route. Note that there is not a single additional coordination with the management throughout the entire chain, since the processes are approved and planned in advance.

As for the technician, in the system he has access to the history of repair and maintenance of specific equipment. And the client can see the status of the application and know for sure whether a specialist has been appointed, whether he left and at what time he will arrive. The system even issues a checklist, according to which you can prepare before the technician arrives.

In addition, the system monitors SLA compliance and can change the schedule for specialists, reassigning them to higher priority requests. If necessary, “electronic brains” consult with the head of the service. When the application is closed and the work is completed, the system generates an invoice, sends it to the client and requests feedback about the service. In parallel with this, the warehouse receives data on used and required spare parts. And already at the end of the month, the system generates a report on the workload of technicians, service KPI (plan / fact), costs, etc.

As you can see, it is very difficult to compete with a company in which the service works so clearly, thanks to IT solutions and a built-in system.

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