When businesses are looking to improve their customer service offering, it is advisable to not limit the initial audit to the call centre or sales team processes. Whilst these areas are at the core of traditional customer contact strategies, by widening the customer service strategy throughout the supply chain, this delivers a coherent and comprehensive approach.
How reverse logistics can help field service and distribution businesses
By borrowing customer facing best practice from food service and retailers, such as “just-in-time” delivery and provision of short or quick time slots; businesses can not only offer a better customer experience but they can improve processes such as returns management in a more profitable way and can start to enhance up-sell through these premium services.
Efficient returns management relies on a reverse supply chain that can handle the fast movement of goods back to the point of production but also the provision of replacement product back to the client (either end user or retailer) in line with customer timelines. This is often discussed in the context of the “last mile” logistics challenge. Returns management is a key driver for customer choice, and expectations are growing.
Technology can help field service and delivery operators
Speed, efficiency and placing your customer at the heart of your operations are key. Business applications can help to support these objectives.
By empowering your field service and delivery agents with the use of back office applications that seamlessly integrate and synch with your warehouse, sales and finance functions; they can easily find, reserve and dispatch replacement products on demand; understand customer history prior to on-site and communicate with colleagues (and send PoD and repairs images to support) in real time.
Increasingly applications such as Dynamics CRM 2016 are becoming part of a maintenance or delivery team’s mobile use since the integration of Field One functionality, speeding up customer interactions and improving transparency. This “right person, right time and right price” functionality is also split out into the Microsoft Dynamics 365 Field Service app.
To find out more about improving your customer experience holistically to include the “last mile” ; download the whitepaper and speak to Prodware about our work with field service maintenance and distribution organisations.