Published: Sunday, 28 April 2013 15:58
Written by Eugene Jones
I bet we have all walked into a store to return an item and the clerk had no idea what to do. It’s a sinking feeling, knowing that this will take an extraordinarily amount of time. Even if the clerk is smart, that really does not make up for understanding the process and navigating through it quickly.
Warranty returns are an opportunity for you to let your customer know that even good products have failures, and that you are prepared to make things right. Automation is the opportunity to deliver consistent service that always follows the rules. Sure you can override the computer rules, but everyone (the customer, your manager, everyone) knows that you delivered beyond the company stated policy. As a manufacturer tracking what you do for customers with defective product is important to understand, these policies seriously impact your image in the marketplace.
Here are the 16 reasons you should have an automated web based warranty claims system.
- Know what you are spending on warranties.
Track what you promise to do, vs what you actually do.
- Prevent Fraud
Understand what your people are giving away, and to who.
- Provide consistent service
Create a method to understand what the actual practices are inside your customer service department.
- Understand in detail what fails
There is nothing like reviewing the warranty claims for the year. What broke, what did your customers say about those failures.
- Improve your product
If you don’t know what fails, how can you fix it? Review the list of claims, carefully and often.
- Get references for your service
If you really make a customer happy, especially when there is a failure, that customer can be your best marketing tool.
- Measure your claims reps
How many claims do each person process? How many happy customers do they generate? How much product do they give away?
- Control your perception of value
Let the computer tell customers that you are doing them a favor. Going beyond your policies.
- Compare yourself to other companies
If you don’t have numbers, how can you compare? It’s not what you are spending on warranty, it’s how happy your customer are after a claim!
- Advertise your service orientation
Nothing says service like showing off your service department.
- Make your company more sell-able to investors
Process process process, being able to replicate your service process is part of what will impress the investors.
- Create a written record of your commitments
If it’s in the computer, it can be reviewed. Don’t make telephone promises.
- Improve employee morale.
Let them know that you are watching and understand the work they are providing has value to you and the company.
- Grow beyond a one person warranty department.
It’s a big step, when one person can no longer address all of your customer issues. After all, you are in the business of building them, not fixing them. Make the transition gracefully with a proven methodology.
- Move toward ISO 9001 quality management.
Once again process is the key!
- Reduce your stress!
Understaning where you are will define where you need to focus.