Visibility, agility, and speed are needed to win in after-sales services

  • ServiceNow Blog
  • Solutions
  • Manufacturing
  • 2022
20 January 2022

Visibility, agility, and speed are needed to win in after-sales services

Services are becoming a critical revenue driver for manufacturers, helping to balance market uncertainties. Growth is surging in the after-sales services market; a study from Deloitte found that manufacturers may even generate 40-50% of overall profits from the after-sales business.

After-sales services for manufacturing

From warranties to replacement parts to data management, service offerings create new systems of value for customers. However, successful service models require a strong customer support infrastructure. Gone are the days when manufacturers respond to a customer call for a repair. Service has shifted from reactive to proactive. Now, customers expect service level agreements (SLAs) that guarantee uptime. The manufacturer-customer relationship is becoming less transactional and more of an uptime-focused partnership.

In after-sales services, it’s all about improving outcomes. From minimising downtime to lowering maintenance costs, manufacturers must think more strategically about enhancing or deepening relationships with customers to unlock new revenue streams. Leading manufacturers are pushing the envelope. Consider Volkswagen Group: they are re-thinking how customers will buy cars in the future, entertaining the idea of pay-as-you-go and subscription-based payment models.

Technology to drive growth and provide great customer experiences

Technology investments will be vital to driving growth. Research from ESI ThoughtLab and ServiceNow found manufacturers that invested in technology generated strong returns. They expect bigger returns, especially from cloud (91%) and internet of things (70%).  

While manufacturers successfully put artificial intelligence and automation to work on the floor, it’s still a relatively new concept to integrate those technologies with back-office functions. But digitising operations across the value chain will be crucial to helping employees deliver better after-sales service to customers. Fixing problems fast is the baseline. Customers want manufacturers to anticipate their needs and prevent problems from ever occurring. Digitisation is essential to creating the speed, agility, and visibility that will help meet changing customer expectations in after-sales services.

Connect the enterprise on one platform

It takes work to get to that future-ready state. But disconnected data, systems, and processes across the back office make it challenging to advance changes. Cloud-based solutions are vital to helping manufacturers transform the way work gets done behind the scenes. ServiceNow unifies manufacturing systems, processes, and teams in one place, making it easy to proactively resolve issues to meet SLAs and manage routine maintenance. 

Learn more about how ServiceNow can help manufacturers transform after-sales services through digitisation.

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