4 Key Takeaways from Our Building a World-Class Service Organization Webinar

What drives a world-class service organization?

Service has evolved so much in the past few years, and we are seeing organizations of all sizes rapidly adapting to take advantage of the new opportunities — as well as overcome the new challenges.

During our recent Building a World-Class Service Organization webinar, I had the privilege of sitting down with Julia Jeschke, Director of Global Solutions Strategy for Dynamics Field Service at Microsoft. My goal was to pick her brain a bit and glean some expert insights on what’s happening in the world of service today.  

We had a great conversation and I’m excited to share the key takeaways — from what world-class service really means (and what we’re seeing across the industry) to how important trends are impacting critical service areas and prompting increased time and resource investment. Read on to learn more.

#1: Remote service has evolved from “nice to have” to “must-have”

Whether we like it or not, the pandemic has changed the way service organizations do business, and what their customers want from a service perspective.

According to TSIA, 78 percent of field service organizations ceased deploying technicians to customer sites during the height of the pandemic. This was probably a reaction to consumers not wanting a field technician physically in their homes unless absolutely necessary.

From managing service out in the field, to engaging with customers, to adapting to new safety protocols and regulations, organizations are being compelled to make remote (or contactless) service a key strategic initiative. Ensuring service companies are leveraging the cloud and connected systems, and have the right technology and virtual tools in place to minimize technician time on site without negatively impacting service delivery rates are big considerations today.

#2: Employee satisfaction is becoming as important as customer satisfaction for service businesses

The Great Resignation — or Great Reshuffle — is another result of the pandemic that’s affecting the industry. In November, a record 4.5 million American workers quit their jobs. Lots of people quitting equates to a reduced talent pool, stronger worker bargaining power, and more competition for skilled workers.

As employees re-assess and re-evaluate what they do for a living, it is forcing service companies to place more emphasis on employee satisfaction — just like they do with customer satisfaction. Why? Because a great employee experience usually leads to a great customer experience.

Automating the workplace and enabling workers with the right resources, training, collaboration, and intelligent technology and tools are becoming the ultimate differentiator when it comes to helping mature service organizations fight employee burnout while driving better customer outcomes.

#3: Organizations need to consider how best to support and empower contracted service providers

With a reduced talent pool creating staffing challenges for all industries, world-class service companies are having to either augment their FTE models or extend their capabilities and reach by leveraging contracted service providers and workers.

47 percent of field service companies are still having trouble getting enough quality technicians and drivers to meet business goals. And by 2025, 50 percent of field technicians and service workers are expected to resort to freelancing.

Getting contracted companies and outsourced workers up and running quickly is critical. They need to have the same access to information and tools as internal employees to be aligned with your overall service experience and create seamless engagements. After all, their success is your success.

Centralized systems, automated processes, and self-service portals simplify and speed onboarding, data accessibility, and collaboration. Improved vendor experiences mean they are more informed, empowered, and responsive. Customers get better service and the company is able to scale faster.  

#4: Data is at the heart of all innovation — and key to evolving the business

Like in many other industries, data is a hot topic for service operations. It’s truly the center of innovation. Data, and the ability to perform intelligent analysis, provide the visibility and insights service organizations need to personalize customer interactions, meet and exceed operational KPIs, and improve business value.

Adding AI, IoT, machine learning, and advanced analytics allows companies to completely evolve the way they do business. They can move from being strictly reactive to being predictive and preventative, which increases customer satisfaction and reduces the total cost of service operations.

By 2025, as many as 95 percent of customer interactions will be through channels supported by AI.

In today’s competitive market, doing business this way is game-changing, adding the high-performance and outcome-based service organizations need to differentiate themselves from the rest of the pack, gain and retain customers, and increase revenue streams.

Ready to begin your transformation?

To hear the complete conversation I had with Julia, and learn even more great insights about building a world-class service organization, view the webinar here.

Whether you are already on the path to service modernization or are just starting your journey, there are many things to consider along the way. Working with a knowledgeable partner from the beginning, who has the industry, processes, and technology expertise, is critical to successfully meeting your service goals.

At Hitachi Solutions, helping our customers reimagine the way they do service is one of the core focus areas of our business. And, as service continues to evolve in exciting new directions, we are proud and ready, to help our customers every step of the way.

If you have questions about anything we discussed in the webinar or would like to chat about your service initiatives, please reach out today.