Organization of service of new high-tech products
When planning a complex of service services for a new high-tech product, an innovative-oriented company, it is necessary to take three decisions:
1) which services to include in the service framework;
2) what level of service to offer;
3) in what form to offer services to customers.Decision on a set of services. An entrepreneur should study consumers in order to understand what basic services could be offered to them and what relative importance each of them has. This issue is not so easy to solve. The service can be extremely important for consumers and nevertheless is not decisive in choosing a supplier if all available suppliers provide it at the same quality level.
The decision about the level of the service. The consumer is interested not only in certain services in themselves, but also in their volume and quality. If clients of the bank have to stand out long lines or communicate with gloomy employees or cashiers, they can change the bank. The firm needs to constantly monitor the extent to which the level of its own services and services of competitors meets the expectations of customers. To detect flaws in the service system can be through a number of techniques, such as conducting comparative purchases, regular consumer surveys, installation of boxes for proposals and the creation of a system of dealing with complaints and claims. All this will help the firm to have an idea of how it works, and frustrated customers - to get satisfaction.
Decision on the form of service. An innovative entrepreneur must also decide in what forms different services will be provided. The first question concerns what prices to set for each type of service. Each type of service can be provided in different ways. And the decision of the company will depend on the preferences of customers and on the approaches used by competitors.
When deciding on the issue of service, the manufacturer of innovation should first of all decide who will do it. It can be either himself, or a service company specializing in the repair of products of this particular company, or a universal service department that repairs such products regardless of the manufacturer. In any case, the organization of service will require the manufacturer to spend time and money, and should determine in advance how to optimize the cost of service, while leaving the services of quality and satisfying the needs of the consumer. There are the following ways of organizing a service system:
• Service is carried out exclusively by the manufacturer of the new product;
• the service is provided by the personnel of the branches of the manufacturer;
• for the service, a consortium of manufacturers of certain types of equipment, as well as parts and assemblies, is created;
• the service is assigned to an independent specialized firm;
• for the performance of service works, intermediaries (agent firms, dealers) are involved, who bear full responsibility for the quality and satisfaction of claims for the service;
• Works relating to maintenance are entrusted to the personnel of the enterprise-buyer.
If the firm itself is engaged in service, the structure of the service might look like this.
1. The central service of the service, including the research section, the technical section, the retraining of personnel, the central database of spare parts.
2. Territorial service of the service, including service stations, territorial spare parts bases, training centers.
Quite often when organizing service support, use the schemes with an intermediary. Entrepreneurs believe that the use of intermediaries represents certain benefits. Sharply decreases the number of contacts the manufacturer with the likely buyers of the goods (Figure 5.7).
Fig. 5.7. The scheme of the organization of the service is individual (a); with the intermediary forwarder (b) :
Legend: Pr - producer, K - client, P - intermediary
In addition, many innovative entrepreneurs do not have enough resources to carry out direct marketing of services. The entrepreneur's appeal to intermediaries is also explained by the high efficiency of intermediary measures to increase the availability of goods on the market.
Depending on the form of indirect sales (intensive, selective or exclusive), intermediaries are selected.
With intensive sales, all possible intermediaries are involved, with the selective (selective) sale, the number of intermediaries is limited depending on the type of consumers, the possibility of servicing, the organization of warranty repairs and the servicing of products. In the role of intermediary can act as a distributor, dealer, commission agent, broker.
In the service sector there are both large companies - service centers equipped with modern electronic equipment, as well as small private forwarding organizations that serve small businesses on the principle of courier service in a short time and with a high degree of reliability.
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