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“If I catch one person a year who is trying to fraudulently get us to replace a $10,000 mattress, this has succeeded.”

Ever send off one too many “replacement” products to a warranty claimant?  If your company offers a product warranty, you need to make sure you keep good records and give the best service. Here’s how.

Find out the big things that one warranty team uses Sage CRM for in order to make sure that valid warranties are honored – and also that any attempted frauds are caught.

The Story

This warranty team of six people handles more than 1,000 calls each month against the company’s luxury mattress protectors. However (this is not unique!), there were some historical warranty registrations that were stored in a database inaccessible to the people handling those calls, and the system to look up warranty registrations wasn’t foolproof. Because of this, there were times when a product was replaced, or more escalated cases when an expensive mattress would be replaced, costing the company thousands of dollars. While it is important to make sure that all valid warranties are honored with generosity, it is equally important to identify any “repeat offenders” who are trying to get a new mattress protector, or more dramatically, a new mattress.

It’s Not Just the Database

In addition to working on an incredible data transformation that pulled warranty information from multiple sources and added it to the proper locations in CRM, there was also a wish: can we go above what was strictly required- and add a little “juice” to the warranty process itself? The goal is not just to keep the data in one place in Sage CRM. The goal is to  improve the overall experience for the warranty team as well as the people buying the product.

 

Things Must Look Good

The end user will first experience your warranty system when they hit your website and search for the product registration.

 

Is this easy on your site, or do you make customers hunt for it? By engaging CRM Together to build a lovely site within the client’s own homepage, we made this easy. Customers land on the homepage and register their purchase. This site, built on CRM Together’s Customer 365 product, is integrated with Sage CRM – so each registration simultaneously creates a record for that person and their product in the CRM database. With this, things really start coming together from a technical and database design point of view (hello!).  Additionally, it’s important that the look and feel of the warranty registration page is in alignment with the client’s marketing and color guidelines so it all “feels” right.

 

The user experience of warranty registration is too often ignored, but for a lot of your customers, this is the front door of your customer service operation! For many customers, the warranty registration page is the beginning and end of the customer experience for them. It’s likely that they will never make a warranty claim. So make a good impression here and make sure this site communicates the tenants of your brand.

 

Warranty Team Member Experience

What about behind the scenes? You want to make sure the people answering those warranty calls communicate good information to the warranty claimants. One of the most powerful things I’ve noticed is the calming effect on a customer of a calm warranty team member on the other end of the line. When you’re able to present all the data to the customer service person at once, they are empowered. This does register to the customer.

 

In order to give the warranty team the most information about the warranty claimant as possible, we needed a screen to capture ALL the potential data about that caller. We couldn’t have the person scrambling to different areas of CRM in order to look up the person’s phone number, address, registered product (if any), and claim history. It all needed to be in one place.

 

Enter the super screen. The super screen is one screen that allows users to create, edit and update multiple entities at one time in Sage CRM– incredibly cool for data entry. For example, a warranty team member could answer a warranty call and on one screen, could:

1. Look up the caller in CRM to see if they had previously registered their product,

2. Create a new person in CRM if it was a new caller,

3. Register as many products as they want for that person, and

4. Create a case against that product if required, all on the same screen.

 

Think of the number of clicks and navigating that is required to do this in a desktop CRM application! I shudder to describe it to you. Users love the Super Screen because it’s friendly to use. They can save their work and come back later, and the Super Screen remembers it all. This product was also developed by CRM Together, and the developer has a little ditty about it if you click: here.

Here’s me, Arline Welty, demonstrating the Super Screen:

Intra-team Process

Everyone can relate to this- when you have a team, it’s not always clear “where we are” in the process. We all have those moments when you can’t remember if Jerry in customer service is waiting on the customer, or if Seth still needs to run the credit check, or where we are with one of the many things people are responsible for. The warranty workflow that is possible to build in Sage CRM is really helpful in clarifying these kinds of “process” issues.

Why Workflow?

Workflow “remembers for you.” Think about it from a warranty team member’s point of view. If there are 150 calls you took this month, you need a system to handle: how many customers have sent in the receipt for their product? Whose receipt have I been waiting on for too long and should make a courtesy call to them? What were the results of our internal product testing, and when was I supposed to hear back from the testing department?

 

Workflow takes care of this by helping you move through the process one step at a time. If the warranty team member clicks “received receipt”, the case moves into the “Received Receipt” workflow state. Click “reassign case” and the case is reassigned to someone else on your team, and they are immediately pinged. Click “Create Replacement Order” and the workflow step can bounce into Sage 300 ERP, create a replacement product order, and interface with the shipping software to get that replacement product to the customer.

 

There are so many cool features of a warranty workflow that just allow team members to click a button and move the process along. Then, if you need to find out a list of all the cases that are assigned to each team member, where we need to make a courtesy call or send a follow up email, it’s easy to pinpoint where every single person is in the process.

Document Generation

All documents, email templates, letters to customers and even mattress replacement vouchers are kept in Sage CRM as well- so everyone is using the same language when they communicate to customers. Since the documents are generated in CRM (using the Accelerator toolbar), they are automatically saved to the case as well.

The Upshot

The greatest benefits of using Sage CRM for the warranty process have been:
– It’s much easier for the customers to register their products online.
– It’s easier to look up people who have registered, or find people with an active warranty case with us- even if they started the case a long time ago!
– If people call in trying to falsely file a claim, we spot them right away and stop them in their tracks. We have already stopped fraudulent callers with the new system.

The great minds at CRM Together in Dublin have also highlighted this work via their Case Studies- click here to read more.

Sage CRM is an extremely strong solution for handling product warranties. If you warranty your products and know in the back of your mind that there are some serious weaknesses, then we need to talk.

 

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