Service FAQs

Click on a link below to access that FAQ (frequently-asked question) topic.

Configuration and Call Center Activity
Customer Perception Drivers and Timing
Dropped Product But Continuing Service Center Calls
Profitability of Demand Drivers
Service Center Demand Drivers
Value of Higher Levels of Service Outsourcing

Configuration and Call Center Activity

“Does product configuration impact call center activity? Are some product configurations more service prone than others?”

Generally speaking, set-top box configuration doesn't impact call center activity in the sense that all configurations are equally service prone. However, there are important exceptions to this generality. Please view the following video for details.

revised 10/03/2017
listed under "Configuration"
listed under "Product Development"
listed under "Reconfigurations"
listed under "Service"[000182.html]

Customer Perception Drivers and Timing

“Are product quality, service quality, and availability perceptions a function of current-quarter conditions or previous-quarter conditions?”

Product quality, service quality, and availability perceptions presumably are mostly based on current-quarter conditions, with previous-quarter conditions having some possible residual impact on current-quarter customer perceptions. While this is a reasonable generality, service quality perceptions are more complicated. Since service quality perceptions are based on customer surveys, customers are surveyed this quarter about their service experiences, most of which probably occurred in the previous quarter. Thus, last quarter's conditions (e.g., call center service levels and performance) influence this quarter's service quality perceptions.

revised 09/12/2013
listed under "Generate Demand"
listed under "Research Studies"
listed under "Service"

Dropped Product But Continuing Service Center Calls

“We’ve dropped a product from region #1 but service calls (and service costs) are still continuing. Why is that?”

Service activity/demand continues after dropping a product due to past sales that involved a lengthy warranty. Eventually, past sales’ warranties will lapse and calls to your service center will cease (and service charges will also cease).

revised 11/21/2004

Profitability of Demand Drivers

“What can we do to assess the relative importance and potential profitability of all of the elements that drive our firm's demand?”

The following video provides advice for your LINKS team about assessing the profitability of the wide range of potential demand drivers that might affect your LINKS business.

revised 08/03/2017
listed under “Advice”
listed under “Financial and Operating Reports”
listed under “Generate Demand”
listed under “Information Technology”
listed under ”Marketing”
listed under "Service"

Service Center Demand Drivers

“What are the demand drivers of calls to our service centers?”

Service center call volume is mostly driven by current sales volume, but warranty levels obviously represent downstream "exposure" to service calls from past customers. Other "special" events or circumstances (e.g., introductions, reconfigurations, unfilled orders, etc.) may also generate additional call-center volume.

revised 09/14/2004

Value of Higher Levels of Service Outsourcing

“What is the value of higher levels of service outsourcing? There’s nothing in the manual about customer impact, cost savings, or other tangible benefits of higher quality service.”

Your question about the benefits of higher quality service raises the general question of effect sizes … the relative sizes of all demand drivers. For example, in the set-top boxes industry, price, perceived quality, perceived service, and perceived availability are the known demand drivers. But, how important are each of these drivers? And, how does this importance vary across markets (channels and regions)? Just as in real life, there are no simple answers in LINKS.

The costs of service are relatively easy to see, but the benefits are uncertain.

So, it's back to general analysis approaches for assessing effect sizes: managerial judgment, analysis of historical data (perhaps via multiple regression models), competitive benchmarking (especially comparisons across similar competitive offerings that differ on only one demand driver level), and in-field experimentation.

revised 02/16/2008
listed under "Service"

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