A Better Approach to Extended Warranties

Field service management software can digitize steps of the warranty workflow to improve customer satisfaction and provide quality and convenience.

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Home and extended warranty providers cover appliances and products that break down – a useful service if you are a customer facing hefty and unexpected repair bills. However, customers are often frustrated when engaging their warranty plans because of confusing terms and coverage plans, long wait times and an unclear process. Field service management software can digitize steps of the warranty workflow to improve customer satisfaction and provide quality and convenience.

1. Put the customer first

The warranty market is a client-first industry that is focused on insuring items that mean a lot to customers. Therefore, it’s critical that the customer journey provided by warrantors is seamless from end-to-end. By implementing connected digital platforms into the service experience, providers increase transparency and communication with their clients, giving them step-by-step updates on their requests, timelines and invoices. Customized, self-service online portals enable customers to schedule maintenance or repair, check service technicians’ whereabouts and status and communicate directly within a mobile application or browser. In fact, 90% of customers expect a business to offer an Uber-like experience with a self-service portal. A centralized location for all service information allows customers to access details of their policy and work history at a moment’s notice and provides simple touchpoints for interaction with the servicer. Consumer-related metrics like customer happiness and response times account for 55% of Forbes Home’s rankings of warranty companies, reinforcing that, when customer is king, the entire business prospers.  

2. Improve the on-site experience

The structure of the warranty system means companies rely on field service technicians to represent their organizations when interacting with the customer. It is therefore crucial that technicians are properly prepared to deliver high-quality service during their visit, to build customer loyalty through an enjoyable experience that resolves the customer problem. Providers that leverage artificial intelligence (AI) through field service management systems can intelligently dispatch the best technician for the job, equipped with the tools and parts needed to get the job done. Leveraging AI-based schedule optimization software can increase productivity by 68%, and AI capabilities not only delight the customer during the service interaction but can also help clients manage their possessions within their policy. Integrated AI can send out alerts to connected devices warning against imminent product recalls and predict potential repairs. Implementing technology that puts the customer first and focuses on service experience will differentiate warranty businesses from their competitors. In fact, consumers that purchase extended warranties and service contracts are twice as likely to recommend the retailer where they made purchases, making their experience all the more important.

See also: How Technology Is Changing Warranty

3. Simplify the process

Once the service work is completed, the servicer must be paid for work performed, and the repair must be logged against the warrantee’s policy. The best full-service digital platforms offer management solutions that enable automated warranty claims processing and intelligent audits based on business logic. Automated claim adjudication with built-in validation improves efficiency and protects warranty reserves. This automated technology also prevents fraud and reduces costs by only validating claims that are eligible for payment and reducing turnaround time on claim status and payment processing. Internet of Things (IoT)-enabled claims management and real-time business intelligence allows providers to cull through information faster to make data-driven decisions. With an organized system of information easily accessible, business leaders can automate standard processes and quickly review key performance indicators (KPIs) in real time to understand and improve service operations. 

4. Expand support systems

Warranty providers often cover products for third-party organizations, meaning they usually serve a wide range of clientele. Warrantors, in turn, must often depend on a blended workforce of full-time, part-time and contracted technicians and employees to meet demand. However, properly managing a large remote workforce that is constantly on the move is challenging and time-consuming. Field service management software is a comprehensive tool that offers providers the ability to engage a broad network of qualified technicians, integrate contractor onboarding and intelligently dispatch workers for the best results. Blended workforces can help eliminate skill gaps, expand geographic reach and support changing demand with a supplementary service provider network. By using software that ensures dispatched service techs have the required background screenings, insurance coverage and certifications and that dynamically chooses contractors based on rankings and credentials, warrantors can increase appointment bookings and reduce rework. In fact, 73% of companies with a blended workforce outperform competitors with employed-only staff, and leveraging workforce managing technology can help businesses scale without dampening service quality. 

Warranties are an important part of home and property management. As more individuals choose to work remotely and increase the time spent using their appliances, devices and vehicles, the coverage for these items will be more important than ever. Implementing comprehensive service management software into warranty business operations can help improve customer service, expand service offerings and automate existing processes to free time and reduce costs, all while improving the quality of service for steady customer retention and brand reputation.

 


Brad Hawkins

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Brad Hawkins

Brad Hawkins has been with ServicePower since 2004, where he currently serves as senior vice president of products and solutions and oversees operations, development and product management. A veteran in the world of field service technology, Hawkins brings more than 20 years of experience in workforce management software.

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