An Interview with Intex | TelecomDrive.com
At a time when mobile customers look for the best possible after sales and service support from vendors, delivering unique experience on this front is becoming a big factor when it comes to determining long term success of a brand.
India’s very own Intex is taking after sales and service to the next level by incorporating innovative offerings in this space.
Arvind Raina, GM – Services (Mobile), Intex Technologies speaks with Zia Askari from TelecomDrive.com about how seriously Intex is taking after sales and service and how its vast channel partner network is playing a vital role here.
What are the key priorities of Intex when it comes to after sales and service?
At Intex, we believe in offering end-to-end services to our consumers which are offered pan- India almost across 1000+ cities with the presence of Exclusive Partners in more than 100 cities. Intex offers after-sales services for its entire product portfolio starting from Telecom, IT and Consumer Durable products. Various after sales services which Intex offers are carried in Services, Onsite repair, Installations and PJP i.e. Pre Journey Plan. In the current scenario, consumers demand better after sales services.
Hence, we record consumer feedback to understand the modern consumers’ needs and service them better. We truly believe that good after sales services is the key to enhance one’s business organically and ensure customer retention.
For us, customer comes first and analysis later which is also one of our major initiative (C1AL) under which the moment we get a repeat complaint, the query is served on an urgent basis and we strive to update customer on every stage till the query is completely resolved. To sustain the faith, we have a dedicated team that caters to the customers’ queries and we have even ensured to involve our top management in some of the cases.
This includes an added focus on service performance, quality, understanding the customer and proactive communication to address any query or call for support. We want to be known as the most trusted smart phone brand in product quality and after sales service amongst all available.
After-sales services is very important to us and therefore our service network is spread across 1000+ cities across pan India with a network presence of around 1200+ service partners (ICPs), 40 Master Intex Care Partners and 100+ Exclusive Intex Care Partners, called as EICPs.
Why after sales service is important today?
In today’s hyper-competitive market especially in the Mobile handset industry, the hardware and software features of the phone are nearly the same and so to keep hold of the key consumers – the youth, after-sales service experience has become the key differentiate and decider for the buyer.
With the growing competition, companies have discovered that selling customer support, maintenance and after-sales services that go along with their product, generated a very good response and helped create a positive perception about the brand.
The advantages to offering after-sales services can be mainly categorised into:
- Competitive Advantage – services or benefits that are not provided by others
- Differentiation – set yourself apart from other competitors
- Customer Satisfaction – keep communication with your customers
- Customer Loyalty – Customers tend to purchase again and recommend the brand to their colleagues
Lastly, a happy customer will purchase the brand again leading to an increase in the profit for the company.
What are some of the big innovations that Intex is driving in this space?
Intex has various new initiatives and processes that ensure the delivery of robust after-sales services to ensure true customer delight. Through these new initiatives, receiving regular customer testimonials has become a trend. The name of the Initiative is IMD i.e. I Made a Difference. IMD is a program where any employee/service partner shares the customer satisfaction story which he feels, is a result of excellent customer service/best practice.
Following are few examples of best services / practices offered to customers.
- In case there is a repeat complaint, we handle it using a process called as C1AL i.e. Customer First Analysis Later. Under this program, the moment we get a repeat complaint, the query is served on war footing level and the customer is updated on every stage till query is completely resolved. Analysis of the same is done later on.
- Regularly measuring Transactional Customer Satisfaction and capturing customer feedback has helped us find out the root causes of issues and thus taking action on these, results in eliminating it completely.
- Senior Management is regularly connected with customers to understand their real pain and this gives a confidence and trust among customers about organizations commitment for their customers.
We have also taken few preliminary steps in the direction of Virtual Service Centers. Providing customer remote trouble shooting at our contact center has initiated practice towards virtual services.
How can after-sales and service create better market positioning for a brand?
After-sales service is a differentiating advantage for brands. At Intex, regular customer connect with the senior management has helped develop a healthy consumer confidence in the market, that as a brand, we are serious about achieving customer delight. Our initiatives have helped develop a customer oriented culture where every service employee feels the pride in delivering an excellent customer service. Good after-sales services help build consumer connect with the brand. As a matter of fact, the relationship with the customer does not end with the purchase of the phone rather begins from there, which is essential to keep consumers happy and ensure retention and repeat purchase.
What kind of role can your channel partners play in this space?
With a strong network of partners, our focus is to reach out to a large customer base. Intex has developed a wide network of 1600 distributors, 80,000 + dealers and 125 brand stores – Intex Smart World covering 83 cities. As a consumer facing brand, our strategy has been to offer better quality products at competitive prices, with strong offline-online distribution and robust after-sales services. Hence, we have 1,500+ service touch points to serve our consumers across different regions.
By providing in-shop expertise and demonstration, we ensure that our representatives are trained to serve best services to our customers. They are also made aware of the medium that systematically directs customers’ query to the right direction and makes sure the required action is taken in time.
What are the challenges that a brand like Intex is facing in this space of customer service?
Quality ‘after-sales support’ is one of the key factors to ensure customer satisfaction and after-sales remains a bone of contention for most buyers. In this competitive environment providing the best of services is essential to retain customers. Moreover, there is a need to have a proper process to address customers’ grievances and provide quick solutions. Customers are looking at quick responses to their queries and this is something we at Intex aim to master.
Please share your service and support strategy and how it is different from other brands?
We have a Pan-India Network of Authorized Service Partners (ASPs), Carry & forwarding Centers. These are known as Intex Care Partners (ICPs), Exclusive Intex Care Partner (EICP) and Master Intex Care Partners (MICPs). We also have a Front office field team comprising Area Service Managers, Zonal service mangers & National service Managers with back-end support from a full-fledged Warehouse & Distribution team and Repair Factory.
The creation of a Business Excellence Department inside Service itself differentiates Intex from its competitors and shows the Management’s orientation on achieving customer delight.
On a day-to-day basis, when a customer calls our Contact Center, their complaint is resolved using remote troubleshooting. If it is not resolved, contact center recommends the customer to visit the nearest service center. At the service center, Post Entry level screening, Job sheet is created and repair activity gets started. Spare Part availability at the service centre is ensured using a robust network of Master Intex Care Partners & Warehouse and Distribution support. Once customer issues are resolved, we take their feedback seriously; to continuously improve the areas suggested by our customers.
What are your plans to further strengthen this in near future?
Our aim is to improve customer experience and achieve service excellence by the various initiatives to help us achieve the goal of providing the best services.
The key areas Intex would be focusing in the coming time are:
- Major focus would be on Employee engagement as we follow the “Employee First” philosophy and believe that only an engaged employee can deliver a delighted customer.
- Another area of focus would be “Customer Experience by Leadership” where top management is personally involved in meeting & interacting with customers. We understand due to this, down the line staff will feel proud in providing excellent customer service.
- To make Intex Service as a sales enabler and positioning service excellence as a brand differentiator.
- Another key area of focus for 2017 would be “Process for everything and everything with Process”.
- We believe whatever can be measured can be improved. With this theme, we are going to focus a lot on measuring customer voice from various channels and a systematic mechanism to improve and sustain customer delight
Additionally, we are investing in various ways to create robust after-sales services
- Company is investing in the development of a modern CRM to ensure Omni Channel presence and match customer’s information from every single channel and update in real-time.
- Investment in setting up Business Excellence teams to ensure sustenance of service excellence practice.
- Company is investing heavily on its back-end support, i.e., Repair Factory and multi presence Warehouse and distribution network.
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