- Industry Trends
Monetizing data in after-sales is a major challenge - but one that also brings major benefits for the machinery and plant engineering industry. Data is the stabilizer for sales and ensures an all-around positive customer experience.
Data can only be monetized if it is visible and available. Before machine builders develop new business models, they must first analyze the old ones. So take a close look at your processes:
Once the status quo has been analyzed, you can think ahead: What data is still missing and how can this data be obtained (for example, using sensors in machines and systems)? And the most important question: Where should the data converge in the future so that everyone in the company can draw insights from it?
By monetizing data, manufacturers want to increase their revenue. To ensure that growth isn't eaten up by rising costs, the processes around your data need to be as lean as possible.
This has several advantages:
If your internal processes are structured and data-based, you can consider an after-sales portal. This is a service portal where plant operators can view the data you prepare themselves.
In this way, customers can quickly find relevant information without your service staff having to invest time. Combined with e-commerce functions, this creates a 24/7 sales channel through which your products sell almost by themselves.
Example: Spare parts are an important factor for increased sales in after-sales. In a digital service information system, a plant operator can easily identify the right spare part himself. 3D or 2D visualizations, an extensive text search, or QR codes on the machine help the customer in his search. In addition, he can find suitable additional information directly for each spare part, for example from maintenance and operating instructions. In combination with a store, the customer can order the required part with just a few clicks - around the clock and from anywhere.
When setting up data-driven after-sales management, machine and plant manufacturers should not forget their employees and partners.
The transformation from after-sales service to digitized after-sales management cannot happen overnight, nor should it turn your entire workflows upside down. Instead, focus on pilot projects and identify the early adopters with an affinity for digital among your customers. With them, you can gain initial experience and then continue to digitize your after-sales step by step.
Summary - this is how digitization succeeds in after-sales management:
An IIoT study found that new technologies have rarely been used in machine building to create new business models. Predictive maintenance, for example, is only used by around 27% of respondents to build new services for customers.
The situation is even more meager when it comes to monetizing the company's own data, which only 25% are currently implementing. Product-as-a-service models, such as the self-service portals described above, exist in only 22% of companies.
The reason for this is that data-based business models in mechanical engineering and all other industries require a lot of time and good planning. It is therefore all the more important for machine and plant manufacturers to start early. Otherwise, you'll have to watch your competitors overtake you and snatch sales from under your nose.