In this week’s guest post Bruno Desmet, Managing Partner at The House Of Sales, is describing how service is evolving from cost center to profit center and how field service technicians can become service ambassadors to generate sales for your company.
Over the past decades a lot of companies evolved from manufacturers to service providers. Services generate higher margins than products and customers prefer to pay for services rather than products.
Customer satisfaction thrives on the following perceived benefits:
- Maximum production uptime
- Increase in productivity
- Cost reductions
- Better control over operational risks
- Ability to offer proven benefits to customers
If you are able to positively impact the above business ambitions thanks to an outstanding service, customers will stay with you. “What about the quality of our products?”, you may wonder. Product quality is a condition sine qua non to be and to stay in business. Not the quality of your products, but the excellence of your service will result in customer loyalty.
Consequently, service has evolved from ‘cost’ center – to support product sales – to ‘profit’ center. Customers are ready to pay for your services, if you are able to prove value to their business.
The role of field service technicians is similarly in transition. Field service technicians are primarily task-oriented. They install, maintain or repair machines and fix problems. Today, these field service technicians should also become people-oriented. If you fix a customer’s problem, this customer will buy more from you. Field service technicians have all prerequisites to become service ambassadors, given that they:
- are far more at your customer’s premises than your sales team;
- are the eyes and ears of your company;
- have credibility, because they are not supposed to sell;
- make customers happy by fixing problems;
- identify more cross- and upselling opportunities with existing customers.
In order for field service technicians to become customer-oriented and be able to upsell and cross-sell, there are a few things you can do to cultivate this behavioral change:
- setting up an incentive program ‘Ambassador of the Month’;
- including specific targets and rewards for lead generation in the technician’s MBOs;
- creating a gift catalog where technicians can exchange points won;
- indicating the service technician’s name as lead source in your CRM;
- equipping field service technicians with field service software.
Does your company already use the power of field service technicians to generate more customer loyalty?
Contact the author: Bruno Desmet, email: firstname.lastname@example.org