Employing Smart, Connected, Predictive Processes That Unite and Empower Your Service Organization
Truly Connected Service, Undeniable ROI
There’s tremendous potential that comes with becoming a connected service organization: more efficient operations and lower costs, more robust service offerings that lead to more revenue, and better service delivery that results in happier and more loyal customers. Most service leaders will agree that becoming a connected service organization can be truly transformative.
To date, the conversation around connected service has largely been about Internet-enabled machines and the Internet of Things (IoT), but realizing the benefits of a connected service organization entails much more than that.
True connected service also requires connecting your customers, processes and resources—from parts to people. Everything is connected: we call this “service in sync.”
The need to adopt this broader vision of connected service is becoming increasingly important as changes in technology, customer needs and the global economy are forcing companies to be more nimble and adaptable to an uncertain future. The trends driving the need for connected service include:
- Customers want to be informed and have control over their service requests from any device and any channel. According to Salesforce’s State of the Connected Customer Report, 40% of customers won’t do business with a company if they can’t use their preferred channels.
- Service organizations often use multiple technologies for various parts of the customer experience and service lifecycle. According to Mulesoft, the average enterprise uses different 900 software applications and only two of them are integrated.
- Since the onset of COVID-19, more business is being done remotely, requiring a new level of digital connection. McKinsey estimates that three to four times as many people could be working from home after the pandemic.
Achieving service-in-sync requires not only an investment in the right technology, but also an organizational change aimed at unifying processes, people, customers and technology. In this eBook, we will share how to forge ahead on your own journey to becoming a true connected service organization.
Three Pillars of Service in Sync
You may have heard companies describe themselves as “customer-centric” before. That’s an important part of service maturity, but companies must also become resource centric, and asset-centric to become a service leader in their industry. Customer, resource and asset centricity are all individual goals for companies to achieve, but are most powerful when they are connected and working together. Customer centricity can’t be fully achieved, for example, if field technicians are not equipped with the right knowledge and parts (resource centricity). Service in sync means mastering all three by unifying your people, processes and technology on behalf of your customers.
According to Salesforce, 69% of consumers expect a connected customer experience. Customers demand the ability to stay connected to your service organization and their service requests on their terms. That means offering multiple communication channels and proactive status updates before, during and after a service event.
Customer Centricity in Action
- Offer an omnichannel customer experience— including phone, email, text, online chat, and social media —that all connects to a central platform for a 360 degree view of the customer.
- Customers have on-demand real-time access to case status and the ability to manage cases proactively.
- Invoices and contracts are easily accessible whenever clients need to access them.
- Customers can easily view asset status and trends to maximize uptime.
Your people, your parts and your fleets all operate on the same real-time data. Your organization can adapt to changes in schedules, customer needs, parts availability, or external forces like weather, bad traffic or other challenges.
Resource Centricity in Action
- Technician schedules are automated and optimized based on factors like proximity, skills, or trunk stock.
- Knowledge base information is automatically sent to service reps and technicians when required (i.e. technician lacks experience with a specific product model).
- Automated parts ordering and shipments are executed based on new case and work order details or customer requests.
- Real-time notifications are sent to customers that technicians are on their way.
The products you service are IoT enabled, so they communicate their status and service issues automatically alerting you as soon as something goes wrong—and ideally before. Solutions like Bolt Data Connect are designed from the ground up to address the needs of connected field service organizations. These solutions enable companies to proactively service their customers and sell more robust service contracts.
Asset Centricity in Action
- Preventive maintenance is triggered once certain assets indicate a change in status. If a wind turbine indicates a certain vibration level, the manufacturer knows it’s time for preventive maintenance.
- Automated service workflows are initiated based on the type of communication from assets. That same wind turbine alert automatically triggers the right tech to be dispatched, to a specific location, based on a customer-specific SLA and confirmation that the parts needed are available in the technician’s truck.
How Service Organizations Connect Customers, Resources and Assets
Buying the right technology to address the service lifecycle is certainly an essential step toward connected service maturity, but it’s just the beginning of achieving service in sync. Salesforce, ServiceMax and Spoke AIOT are powerful, proven service platforms and products, but the companies that succeed with these tools integrate them with their processes and other cloud platforms, like ERP.
Cloud service technology can also be connected to other departmental systems like sales and marketing automation software, finance systems and HR suites to automatically trigger other workflows that further streamline the customer and employee experience, like invoicing or personalized email marketing.
The following is an example of a complex service event that demonstrates the power of service in sync, involving a third-party service provider in the medical device industry:
A GoodMed MRI machine at Happy Valley Hospital (HVH) is connected to the web and communicates an alert through Spoke AIOT that one of its high definition displays is malfunctioning. The hospital’s service manager also texts GoodMed to alert them of the issue and takes a picture of the QR code on the display, uniquely identifying the asset. (Asset and customer centricity)
The SLA on the GoodMed service contract specifies that a technician will be on-site within 24 hours to fix the problem within 48 hours, since this is a high volume machine for HVH. (Resource centricity)
Due to the common nature of this MRI machine error, Salesforce and ServiceMax Asset 360 are configured to check parts inventory in the ERP system for the right display screen and then request it be shipped overnight to the hospital’s service and maintenance office. A third-party technician is assigned the work order for the following day and notified where the part will be delivered. (Resource centricity)
Salesforce also analyzes the skill set of this technician and can see that he is not familiar with this specific model of MRI machine, so attached to his work order are the relevant pages from the service manual with instructions on how to replace the display. (Resource centricity)
The technician arrives the following day, installs the new display and updates the work order as completed on his mobile device. The MRI machine communicates through Spoke IoT that there are no current issues, indicating to the GoodMed team that the problem was successfully fixed. (Asset centricity)
Because the technician determines that the display broke due to a coffee spill (customer fault), the third party technician discussed the situation with the hospital, who agreed that the incident was billable and had that hospital representative sign the work order on the technician’s mobile device confirming the conversation. GoodMed’s invoicing system automatically bills the customer and sends a work order summary via email via Salesforce. (Customer centricity)
The HVH service manager emails the GoodMed service manager about upgrading to a service contract that covers all service events. A GoodMed service rep creates an upsell opportunity in Salesforce that is routed to the right service rep for follow up. (Customer centricity)
In this example of service in sync, connected automation drives much of the traditionally manual process. Various systems communicate and share real-time data, creating an efficient and reliable service relationship between the client and customer while reducing the costs for the service organization by eliminating additional truck rolls, manual data entry errors and communication lags between departments.
The promise of connected service is real: increased revenue, lower costs, operational efficiency and happier customers. But having the right perspective on connected service is essential for companies to realize a true service transformation. It’s not just about connecting machines—it’s about becoming a customer-centric, resource-centric and asset-centric service organization at the same time.
Buying the right technology is the first step. But companies also need to unify and integrate their processes into the technology in order to achieve service in sync. Bolt Data has been helping service organizations maximize the ROI of their technology purchases for nearly a decade by helping our clients develop and realize their vision for service, rationalize their business processes, building them into the right technology platforms, and intelligently integrating systems so they are all operating on one set of data, ensuring total alignment.
How can you take the first steps toward creating a service organization in sync? Get in touch with Bolt Data and we’ll set you on the right path.