Service lifecycle management (SLM) refers to the software and strategy used to manage the repair and maintenance of products. With service lifecycle management solutions, improving a service becomes an ongoing process rather than a series of events or one event. A customer buying your product should not consider self service as the end of your relationship. It’s just the beginning.
Modern-day enterprises must keep customers satisfied to stay competitive in the marketplace. Your organization needs to think about how to provide value to customers as they use your products. This helps to maximize the value and customer relationship.
An SLM solution helps you to continuously deliver new value to your customers. How does it do this? It takes advantage of connected systems and embedded software to manage events and product performance as a customer uses it.
SLM can help add value to your organization in the following ways:
- It optimizes performance with smart connected products.
- It reduces downtimes by using predictive analytics.
- It can help enhance security/vulnerabilities on an ongoing basis.
- It gives you access to relevant and accurate documentation, parts lists, and illustrations.
- It boosts first-time fix rates and service response times.
- It optimizes pricing and service parts availability.
- It uses product-as-a-service (PaaS) models to pay for product performance.
By deploying an SLM solution, you can get better insights into how your products perform with customers. It will also tell you how best to service the products and when products need service.
Key Features of Service Lifecycle Management Software
SLM software usually comes with the following set of core features:
- Workforce management – This is critical for scheduling your service workers.
- Call center management
- Reverse logistics – This involves handling items that need servicing or disposal.
- Planning and forecasting for parts
- Asset management
- Contract management
- Knowledge management – This ensures you have all relevant information at hand. This includes product service history, available configurations, and current status. It may also contain content management tools. You can use these tools to create training material and service manuals for products.
Benefits of Deploying Service Lifecycle Management
1. Reduced Service Costs
Robust service lifecycle management solutions enable organizations to manifest quantifiable savings from the following areas:
- Improved productivity for technicians
- Improved parts and inventory management
- Reduced time needed on fire-drills
- Optimized service delivery
SLM minimizes unnecessary returns of faulty products. It also improves the operational efficiency of services by making important information available through the lifecycle of the product.
2. Improved Service Call Profitability
SLM software and processes can help improve the profitability of service calls. You can achieve this through upselling replacements, renewing service contracts, tracking warranties, and handling payments.
3. Streamlined Workflow
SLM software works in tandem with product lifecycle management (PLM) software to help automate the collection and transmission of data. The software relies on Internet of Things (IoT) devices to determine product status and perform diagnostics. These data enable your organization to provide better service to customers. The data can also help improve the product. They give engineers and designers insights into the real-world performance of the product. This is particularly important during the early stages of the product’s lifecycle.