Real-Time Asset Management: How It Improves Customer Service
Asset management can be a complex issue for any organization. It is even more difficult when a help desk has to deal with a large number of clients while using different products with varying configurations and optional features. For example, when a service request is received a huge amount of information is required before a preliminary diagnosis can be determined, let alone a solution. Warranty information, processor type, RAM, hard disk capacity, operating system and history of previous problems all have to be collected. Often the caller will not be able to provide all of the information or will be dissatisfied by what seems like unnecessary questioning. Without these inputs, the help desk is powerless to provide the right kind of support.
When real time asset management is integrated into help desk operations, customer satisfaction is increased and the help desk is able to acquire all of the required information. The help desk administrator is also sure of the exact specifications of the product in question. This leads to a faster response time and quicker online support operations. The problem is easier to diagnose, which makes both the help desk operators and the customers happier. Should a technician or spare parts be necessary, the problem can be attended to faster with real time asset management. Also, customers can be notified in advance of any charge or payment. Asset management improves customer service in other ways also–ways that do not directly affect the caller but benefit the business.
Most businesses look at customer service as a profit center. In many cases the profitability potential is never fully realized. Real time asset management in service and support operations allows for a complete alignment of processes, systems and resources to provide total visibility and control in deployment. This optimizes end to end service operation management and allows for the development, marketing and delivery of better and more profitable service products. Also, by providing the service and support staff with complete customer and product related information, set up and response times are reduced, cutting overheads and increasing productivity.
Inventory cost is a major issue in all service operations. Asset management software, especially if integrated in the help desk platform, enables tighter control of the inventory of spare parts while ensuring that the necessary parts are available at the right place and at the right time.
Real time asset management also provides help desk operators with the ability to analyze customer requirements, consolidate information that may be received from various related sources, evaluate technical information on such issues as repeated failures of the same type, monitor service specific key performance indicators and simplify access to management information.
Many of the benefits of integrating real time asset management into service operations may seem to be more internally oriented as opposed to improving the customer service experience. Even the internally accrued benefits of asset management will result in more efficient and customer friendly service. This means that customers will be more satisfied therefore increasing business profits.