Customer Support, action center, QAD

In our previous Actionable Insights blog, we discussed the Operations Efficiency and Utilization by Production Line Action Center. Next, we will provide an overview of the Customer Support Action Center as well as the associated key performance indicators (KPIs).

In today’s highly competitive and hyper-connected marketplace, companies need to take care of their customers both before and after a sale or risk losing not just that single customer but potentially hundreds more. Understanding how customers are faring as they use your products and support services is crucial to customer retention and brand image.

KPIs for Effectively Tracking Customer Support Requests

QAD Action Centers provide analytics to help both managers and users monitor metrics and KPIs. KPI highlights for the Customer Support Action Center include:

Open Action Requests by Severity

By showing open service requests by month and severity, this report shows you how well you are taking care of customer problems. There should be very few high severity issues, and those that occur should be closed quickly rather than drag on from month to month. If they remain open for long periods of time, you’ll likely have an unhappy customer situation brewing, and you can redeploy resources to resolve the issues. You can also see trends in issues. Total issues should remain stable or go down. If they are trending higher, it’s time to investigate.

Outstanding Service Orders

This gauge shows the number of outstanding service orders, and like the Open Action Requests, it can provide an early warning of a growing customer issue. An upward trend may also tell you it’s time to add service technicians, or to consider overtime to get the numbers back in line.

First Visit Resolution

Few things irritate customers more than a service technician who doesn’t fix the problem in a single visit. This visual shows the percentage of calls that resolve the problem in one visit as a percentage of all open calls during the selected period. If the number is unsatisfactory, it may point to a problem in product design, an imbalance in service part inventory, inadequately trained techs or poor dispatching procedures. Investigating and resolving the underlying issue will reduce service costs and raise customer satisfaction.

Service Orders by Cause

This visual shows service orders by cause, and can help you identify product design flaws, installation and implementation issues, and potential training issues. This can be especially helpful after new product or release introductions to identify potential issues so you can make design or process changes before the problem gets out of hand.

Open Service Orders by Severity

Like Open Action Requests by Severity, this visual helps identify potential issues that cause unhappy customers. You may find a process or design issue, a training issue, or an inventory problem, but knowing you have an issue helps you to resolve the problem before it affects more customers. Also, monitoring trends in the number of issues by severity can show trends in service depot performance that may point to training or staffing as a problem.

Engineer Utilization

Service engineers are expensive, so it’s important to keep them busy. If you find that some engineers are under-utilized while others are too busy, it may point to the need for skills transfer. This can also help you identify the need for headcount adjustments that may head off a customer service issue or keep costs in line with objectives.

Depot Orders by Queue

By showing the service orders waiting ahead of equipment, work centers or talent, you may be able to identify and rectify potential bottlenecks by adding equipment, transferring technicians, adding additional equipment and tools, or making product design changes.

Overdue Depot Orders

By helping you monitor whether you are keeping up with service delivery promises, you can monitor potential customer satisfaction issues or make changes to resources, inventory, or personnel deployments until depot orders are back on track.

Service Contracts Expiring This Quarter

By seeing service contracts about to expire, you can better project revenue. You also have a built-in priority list to ensure that no service issues derail the renewal process and to guide your renewal team to customers where their efforts are likely to pay off.

Unreturned RMAs by Item

Organized by items and price, this helps identify potential problems with your return merchandise authorization (RMA) process, which might be related to RMA or item costs as well as the process itself. It may also mean that customers were able to resolve issues on their own, which is good, but since they raised an issue in the first place, this could point to needed changes in user manuals and documentation.

Overdue RMA Shipments

Identifies users who have requested RMAs but did not complete the process. This can help identify process problems and provides a list for follow-ups to ensure customer satisfaction.

action center, dashboard, Customer Support, QAD

The Value of the Customer Support Action Center

It’s been proven time and again that keeping an existing customer happy is less expensive than acquiring a new customer, so it makes sense to carefully monitor KPIs that can identify potential issues. Resolving any issues quickly can help keep the cost of service low while keeping customers happy. QAD Adaptive ERP works within any manufacturing environment, and the Customer Support Action Center is a valuable tool for companies undergoing digital transformation and adopting modern ERP solutions.

Which KPIs and metrics are most important to your organization? Learn more about QAD’s predefined Action Centers as well as best practices for each.