Management InSites

Servicing Your Customers from a Distance During COVID-19 and Beyond

When providing service for your company’s products is an integral part of your model, it can be challenging to adjust to a time when in-person contact is not only frowned upon, but even prohibited in certain parts of the world.

The COVID-19 pandemic has left companies wondering how they can continue to be valuable to their customers when they can’t come within six feet of them. While it is unclear how long we will all have to remain somewhat isolated to remain safe, it is clear that firms need to adjust to the situation, or be left quickly behind by others who do.

First, it would be wise to consider the following questions as you evaluate how your company can address servicing customers remotely:

 

4-way panel with text

  • In the short term, it might be possible to provide “service calls” over video chat. If a technician can assess a problem through a video call, and provide guidance to a customer who can attempt to fix the issue in real-time, then your company is still providing value, and is being safe in the process.
  • Not all problems, however, can be fixed by an untrained person – even with the guidance of an expert watching over them. For these cases, it might be necessary to explore what technologies exist that can make remote service calls possible. Does your product need to be modified to allow for this? Does your price-point need to change to accommodate for this issue?
  • Another consideration is cyber security and the potential threat of hacking. If you’re coaching your customer through a very complicated service issue, a hacker could theoretically gain access to confidential information about your product, simply by surreptitiously logging into your call. Investment into increased security might not only be important, but essential to keep your company secure.
  • Finally, airlines have been upfront about how the pandemic is affecting their bottom lines. As a result, several flights have been canceled, and certain routes are being discontinued. Even if safety measures relax, what might have been an inexpensive flight to visit a client might turn into a costly trip requiring additional time due to connecting flights and higher fares. While higher costs might be acceptable when visiting customers generating profitable high-volume business, it is not sustainable across the board. Rethinking how your service department interacts with your clients will be essential for your company to not only stay afloat, but also to thrive in this new world.
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How can we help you?
Contact us or submit a business inquiry online.
Read more
  • Breaking Into the U.S. Water Sector: The Vast U.S.A.

    When considering entry into the U.S. market, it is imperative to remember how vast the U.S. is. While the water in most areas of another country with a small geographic footprint might be similar to one another, that is not the case here.

    July 26, 2021
  • The Changing World of 3PLs

    Third-party warehouses (3PLs) have historically provided companies with an invaluable service: the ability to store inventory and ship it out to customers around the globe. These warehouses are experts at packaging products to maximize order fulfillment.

    July 1, 2021
  • International Shipping and Incoterms

    When dealing with shipping internationally, especially from abroad to the U.S., setting the terms of the transaction from the moment the customer requests a quote is incredibly important. To avoid problems, unwanted costs, and even potential legal issues, there should be no room for confusion or ambiguity in the contract you set up with your customer.

    March 8, 2021
  • Shipping with HS and HTS Codes

    If your organization intends to ship or receive items to or from overseas, it is important to understand an integral part of the international shipping process: the Harmonized System (HS) and Harmonized Tariff Schedule (HTS), which were developed by the World Customs Organization.

    February 8, 2021
How can we help you?
Contact us or submit a business inquiry online.

Servicing Your Customers from a Distance During COVID-19 and Beyond

When providing service for your company’s products is an integral part of your model, it can be challenging to adjust to a time when in-person contact is not only frowned upon, but even prohibited in certain parts of the world.

The COVID-19 pandemic has left companies wondering how they can continue to be valuable to their customers when they can’t come within six feet of them. While it is unclear how long we will all have to remain somewhat isolated to remain safe, it is clear that firms need to adjust to the situation, or be left quickly behind by others who do.

First, it would be wise to consider the following questions as you evaluate how your company can address servicing customers remotely:

 

4-way panel with text

  • In the short term, it might be possible to provide “service calls” over video chat. If a technician can assess a problem through a video call, and provide guidance to a customer who can attempt to fix the issue in real-time, then your company is still providing value, and is being safe in the process.
  • Not all problems, however, can be fixed by an untrained person – even with the guidance of an expert watching over them. For these cases, it might be necessary to explore what technologies exist that can make remote service calls possible. Does your product need to be modified to allow for this? Does your price-point need to change to accommodate for this issue?
  • Another consideration is cyber security and the potential threat of hacking. If you’re coaching your customer through a very complicated service issue, a hacker could theoretically gain access to confidential information about your product, simply by surreptitiously logging into your call. Investment into increased security might not only be important, but essential to keep your company secure.
  • Finally, airlines have been upfront about how the pandemic is affecting their bottom lines. As a result, several flights have been canceled, and certain routes are being discontinued. Even if safety measures relax, what might have been an inexpensive flight to visit a client might turn into a costly trip requiring additional time due to connecting flights and higher fares. While higher costs might be acceptable when visiting customers generating profitable high-volume business, it is not sustainable across the board. Rethinking how your service department interacts with your clients will be essential for your company to not only stay afloat, but also to thrive in this new world.