the results of the digitalization was already shown during a few years
Digitalization of a service
“It’s not like there are many businesses today that are printing more and more,” saysKenneth Nygaard, IT Manager at Konica Minolta. “Things are actually moving in the other direction, so we had to start thinking along new lines to protect our position and bottomline.”
The starting point for the decision to digitalise the service division was individual systems, where each technician had their own system with manual processes and papers thats witched hands. Konica Minolta’s ambition was to move away from the classic “that’s how we’ve always done it” to more streamlined and efficient processes through the following initiatives:
- Establishing a digital toolbox that was agile, innovative and scalable
- Implementing mobile solutions that could be accessed on the spot regardless of where a staff member was working
- Establishing measurements and KPIs that supported the management’s goal of betterSLA (Service Level Agreement) performance and increased efficiency
One of the key elements of the plan was to establish a service portal that would give the service organization a full overview of and access to all the new tools. Konica Minolta enlisted the help of Delegate to make that a reality.
In order to ensure that the new system would be efficient, Konica Minolta took user needs into account from the very start. “We’re a classic service organization with an employee group where the average age is closer to 60 than 20. We knew that new tools and working methods would be met with resistance and kept that in mind from the start. That’s why from the very beginning, we included an evaluation group of four technicians, who were continually involved in the project and functionality so as to help ensure it would be received in the best possible way among the technicians,” says Kenneth Nygaard
Follow-up on the project
Konica Minolta’s approach to the project was both classic and sensible. There was a plan in place from the very start, which included a thorough follow-up on and expansion of the project in pre-defined intervals.
- The first evaluation was scheduled for three months into the project. It was during the first evaluation that Konica Minolta became aware of a number of unintended results in relation to the technicians’ new workflows and a new dispatcher unit, which was operating sub-optimally. The early evaluation meant that Konica Minolta quickly spotted the issue and allowed them to adapt the systems accordingly early on in the process.
- The second evaluation was planned for seven months into the project. This also resulted in an upward revision with an optimization of workflows and processes.
- The third evaluation took place after 12 months. It was during the third evaluation that the company decided to transition to a 100% web-based solution so that on-site hosting would no longer be needed. This meant that 1. Konica Minolta could expand their client to contain even more information and improve the tools even further and 2. that each technician would get full freedom in terms of where and how he wanted to access his tools, i.e. on a mobile phone, tablet or PC.
Konica Minolta has continued to set up bi-annual follow-up meetings with the evaluation group after the third evaluation with a view to ensuring that the new tools remain fit for purpose in relation to the service staff’s needs and workflows. One of the results from these meetings has been a re-optimization of the portal with new integrations, apps and self-service in 2017.
Build on a legacy platform
The premise for the optimization of Konica Minolta’s service organization was clear from the start: It would have to be based on the company’s existing systems.
“We knew from the start that within the group, there were IT teams in Japan and Germany working on a new CRM system, which meant that we would have to build on our Navision from 2008 and our CRM system from 2011. We therefore had to find a solution that could optimize the service organization without throwing millions at the process from the start,” says Kenneth Nygaard.
It was both challenging and educational, because as Kenneth rightly pointed out, Konica Minolta’s results show in no uncertain terms that you can actually transform your business even from a sub-optimal starting point. “A lot of it is about the approach you take. In our view, it wasn’t an option to wait several more years to digitalize our service division, so we chose to work with what we had and then look forward to the great new CRM system arriving as a cool feature later on,” says Kenneth Nygaard.
The tools Konica Minolta got
- Technician portal with an overview of new, transferred and rejected service requests.
- Mobile installation view.
- Power app with picture uploading and real-time inventory view.
- Customer app with access to direct error reports which get sent to the technicians.
With the new system supporting the service organisation, Konica Minolta’s team of mobile technicians dropped from 90 in 2013 to 60 in 2017, while at the same time, the company’s business has grown from approximately 22,000 serviced machines in 2013 to over 35,000 in 2017.
The results have meant:
- An efficiency increase of 120%!
- 38% better response time.At the same time, Konica Minolta has developed into a multi-vendor service, meaning that now, they not serve their own printers, but also offer servicing for competing product.
Would you like to learn more about how you can optimise your service organisation, what to take into account and what arguments you can put forth for why you should (seriously) consider the possibilities of optimising your service organisation? Read more and download our guide for Field Service with Dynamics 365 right here.