Today’s customers not only acquire products or services, they acquire experiences. Brand experiences are based on this second phase of the relationship with the supplier after the sale has been made, and this is where a good Field Service Management system may be the key. But, what technologies will have a positive effect on how an after-sales service is perceived?
Precisely the after-sale service, which includes the provision of spare parts as well as preventive maintenance or the resolution of incidents, is the true source of income for many businesses. It is what improves margins or promotes loyal relationships with customers; which is the goal at the start of every commercial action.
For some time now, a number of technologies have arisen that will have an impact on the way we interact with our current and future customers regarding the provision of our FSM services (Field Service Management). These include the Internet of Things (IoT), wearable devices, autonomous vehicles, 3D printing, and drones. Let’s have a quick look at them all…
THE FIVE TECHNOLOGIES THAT WILL INFLUENCE THE AFTER SALES EXPERIENCE
- Internet of Things. At the recent IoT Congress in Barcelona, in which we participated with our Field Service Management solution, Task4Work, we were able to witness many of the innovations that are being implemented in many types of businesses. The interactivity that may exist between the machines that need servicing and their manufacturers or maintenance supervisors make it possible to diagnose, identify, and even predict failures. This makes it possible to alert a customer and to automatically require the presence of a repair service with the exact parts needed to do the job. A world of truly exciting applications that will significantly reduce the downtime of any machine.
- Wearable Devices. Augmented reality will facilitate access to documents and diagrams, making it possible to overlay information visually while working. You won’t have to stop to look something up in a manual. It will be a stunning source of information during the training phase and when working at a customer’s facilities. In addition, devices designed for verbal communications will make it possible to consult experts on the fly. All of this will make even less expert employees more effective and productive.
- Driverless Vehicles. According to a report by Juniper Research (in English), by 2025 there will be a total of 20 million fully autonomous vehicles in the world, representing 1% of the total. Precisely this autonomous driving will allow field technicians to take greater advantage of their travel time, becoming truly multi-tasking staff. They will be able to contact their next customer on their list, be better prepared before their next visit (which allow them to make their time with the customer more profitable), their vehicle could go to the nearest warehouse to pick up a necessary spare part, etc.
- 3D printing will generate spare parts on the fly or design prototypes at much greater speed. The progress that has been achieved with this technology now makes it possible to create items from metallic materials, and their practical use is just around the corner. Consider for a moment the savings, not only in fixed inventory assets, such as spare parts in stock but also in logistics costs that could be avoided when repair work may depend on the availability of a particular spare part. In the end, there is a very significant impact on the customer experience by improving service quality levels.
- Drones. We are already accustomed to seeing them as toys for our children, as simple items of entertainment that fly or carry increasingly precise cameras. Consider for a moment their use to avoid travelling to review distant facilities, in areas that involve a certain level of danger, or to transport parts from the warehouse to where they are needed.
Our Task4Work solution, specifically created to enhance the productivity of mobile workforces, is the ideal system to allow all these innovations to be implemented in organisations to reduce operating costs. If you are interested, please contact us without obligation.