In most companies, the service organization is an island, a self-contained operation distinct from the sales organization. The sales function is usually proactive - with a strategy to build and maintain customer relationships and with the benefits of a CRM to fine-tune its messaging. The service function, on the other hand, is reactive, responding to customer calls, handling repairs or taking care of other issues. It is purely a support function.
However, this siloed sales and service approach is costing companies more than just efficiency. Studies have shown that better, more holistically aligned service, costs less, is more efficient and cements the relationship businesses have with their customers. More importantly, when service is segregated from sales and marketing, it is unable to contribute to revenue. So, with a siloed service organization, companies are missing a good opportunity to add to their top line.
The solution to this problem lies in Enterprise Service Transformation - a holistic approach that integrates service into the total enterprise continuum. By integrating service within the business functions and SAP CRM, companies have the opportunity to provide best-in-class service while giving personnel the tools they need to expand the company's marketing initiatives. If you think about it, the person who just fixed your air conditioner on a hot day has the best opportunity to sell you something else – be that a service contract or an add-on product.
By taking advantage of the consumerization of technology – and the resulting mobile applications that can push customer intelligence and tools historically saved for marketing or sales to the client-facing service personnel - companies can improve service and customer loyalty. For example, field service personnel can receive notices to tell the appropriate customers about relevant offers while on their service calls and can sign them up from their mobile device. This approach eliminates multiple steps and engages the service team to solidify the company's relationship with the customer.
Or, if a particular device gets multiple service calls that end up being the result of customers not properly using the device, training could solve the problem. The company could create product training ? a boot camp designed for customers and marketed through the service personnel. When the service person is on site, he or she can tell the customer about the boot camp, use the mobile device to communicate the different times and dates for the event, and sign the customer up on the spot.
Read more about how technology can be used to integrate sales and service, in our article, Enterprise Service Transformation: The Holistic Approach that Increases Efficiency, Revenue and Customer Loyalty.
Have you any instances in your organization, where the use of technology enabled the service function to contribute to enterprise revenues?