Digitalisation of the after-sales service - Part 3: How?

The digitalisation of after-sales services is a necessity and a source of opportunity: if the past years have been those of...

Mohamed BEN AYED
March 8, 2022

The digitalisation of after-sales service is a necessity and a source of opportunity: if the past years were those of e-commerce/e-retail, the coming years will be those of e-Service!

Certainly, there are still some difficulties in making this transformation, this digital switchover, but it is possible. If we pay attention to detail, e-Service is no longer a matter of the future, if not the present.

Doing a good inventory of the SAV premises

First things first, do you have a service tool?

❌ NO

If this is not the case, you need to put one in place and why not a digital after-sales service from the start. This way, your customers are taken on board in an online after-sales experience as soon as they buy.

✅ YES

If you have an after-sales tool in your shops for the classic management of your after-sales service, you have two options:

  1. Digitalisation as part of a project to transform and modernise your after-sales service: you replace the old one with a digital after-sales service
  2. You keep your tool and you double it with a "digital layer" that interfaces with the historical tool.

For the second case, an in-depth analysis is necessary to evaluate the technical and functional capacities of your tool and your information system.

Warning ⚠️⚠️!

An essential prerequisite is that the after-sales service business be mastered internally or by your service provider. Indeed, there is no point in putting the cart before the horse: to implement a project to digitise the after-sales service, the change agent must master the business issues. And when we say mastery, we mean mastery because this field is an exception and is rich in processes. In other words, the slightest business constraint can affect everything you have recommended at the technical level.

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Tips and tools for relevant digitalisation

1. What can you digitise?

The short answer is ALL. In other words, all the paths without exception can be handled via the customer area of your site, and/or outside the customer area. Some actions are particularly prone to digitalization:

  • Coverage under warranty or out of warranty (with online payment)
  • Repair at home with appointment and/or in the workshop with shipment of the product
  • Offer complementary services that generate autonomy for the customer with self-repair, self-diagnosis, and even the ordering of spare parts depending on the product and the breakdown
  • Real-time monitoring of various indicators and status

2. How to proceed?

Back to square one

If you have an after-sales service tool, you cannot afford not to analyse it in depth, and in particular: the capacity to interface with external systems, the readability and structuring of data, the suitability of back office processes with a possible customer process (simpler and more intuitive), and the possibility of synchronising your tool with a new digital layer.

Choosing your digitisation model

The analysis of the existing tool, or the purpose of an after-sales service tool if you do not have one, should enable you to decide: are you going to extend the current tool? A global one-shot transformation? A progressive transformation? Or a choice of a 100% online after-sales service tool?

Preparing for the transition

Will it be managed internally or will it require the support of a publisher in the field? What resources do you have available? What is the timeframe for this transition? What integration into your overall policy? And what business expert resources do you have?

At this stage, it is still imperative to take into account the complexity of the after-sales field, which explains the small number of specialised players.

Define your digital needs

What services do you want to offer your customers? What acquisition strategy via a quality after-sales service?

Between strategic questions and functional analysis, it is a question of designing the contours of your digital tool by answering the questions above.

Editor's note - This definition can also be the first stone of change ;)

____

Digitalising your after-sales service tool to make it more efficient and attractive is not impossible, but it requires analysis and foresight so as not to miss the entry into this new era of e-Service!

If this transformation is successful you will be able to :

  • Significantly minimise after-sales processing in shops and call centres
  • Reposition your advisors on value-added tasks
  • Accelerate ownership and promote your brand

In other words, you will optimise the costs associated with after-sales service and it will generate positive spin-offs.

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