Green-lighting Customer Service Innovation in Manufacturing

If you’re in customer service at a manufacturer then you know that getting innovative, digital projects off the ground isn’t easy. In this article we’ll outline some tactics for how to approach the challenge.

Phill Brougham
Posted by Phill Brougham
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construction-factory-industrial-73833Manufacturers get a bad rap for being behind the times; weighed down by legacy systems they are slow to change, unconcerned by customer needs with a pure focus on lowering production costs. With the global market intensifying competitively, commodities prices increasing and talent flocking to other industries, many manufacturers are rising to the challenge and taking off the digital shackles.

There are plenty of reasons to innovate, as well as many areas within manufacturing that require attention. If you want to drive projects forward, however, the most compelling argument you can pitch to management is new revenue generation. While cash can be saved in making production and supply processes more efficient, there is plenty of new business to be found in value-added services; such as analytics & data, field service, or consultative add-ons. Customer service leaders should take note.However, while in the larger economy customer service has evolved into a strategic priority for management teams, most manufacturers do not yet see it as such. You need an ally to get your digital projects off the ground. You need to partner with IT.

In most manufacturing businesses, IT is tasked with digital innovation. Therefore, you need to get on their bandwagon and make your project indispensable to their larger digital goals. We know that digitization is a key goal in manufacturing, so any new software, solution or digital functionality can fit underneath this umbrella, but you need to demonstrate your project fulfils at least one of the following:

  • Operational improvements in delivering or supporting physical products
  • Digital value chain innovation & optimization
  • Product services that increase reliability and operating time

Build this relationship with IT. Find out their goals, pain points and ideas for change. Bring your ambitions to the table and link these back to supporting their larger goals.

At DigitalGenius we’ve helped customer service leaders at global manufacturers advance and approve automation projects. Clear-cut demonstration of how our solution could help optimize the delivery and support of physical products and accelerate operations within digital value chain was critical to bringing IT onboard.

Together, we could directly attribute a cost saving for the business, and by optimizing customer service resources, provide a platform for customer service teams to upskill to new services and products that generate new revenue.

Whatever you do, customers expect predictability, they are counting on you and the goods you provide to run their business. Therefore, digital innovation needs to be stable and repeatable for customers, ideally generating you more revenue, and optimizing your operations in the process.

If you have ideas, questions or comments about this article please get in touch!

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