Posted by: Tuomo Rekilä // 25.04.2018
Lean is a commonly used method which focuses on productivity and agility of workflows through effective waste minimization. Lean principles fit perfectly for managing effective and productive after sales service processes. The method strives for the value delivered for the customer: ideal process includes only actions that the customer is glad to pay for.
AFTER SALES SERVICES MUST ADD VALUE
Lean makes obvious which actions add value by reducing everything that is not adding value to the customer. It strives for continuous improvement of the processes, delivering productivity and efficiency in an ever changing market. The productivity is enhanced by simplifying the operations and processes and securing the continuous improvement of them.
The key steps are to understand and manage the workflows consciously. Lean emphasizes the importance of optimizing workflows in the light of their strategic importance, at the same time focusing on minimizing waste. Lean processes are successful when the employees understand their value and purpose: this enables them to initiate and improve such processes that deliver value.
WASTE REDUCTION PRINCIPLES
A lean after sales service process is clearly specified. This means that the content, sequence, timing, and outcome of the process are defined and unnecessary elements have been removed.
However, identifying the waste creating elements is not always easy. While creating a top-notch after sales service process, it should be reviewed through the original seven “mudas” – waste elements of the lean thinking:
- Transport (eliminating unnecessary transfer of products)
- Inventory (eliminating unnecessary storing and handling of components)
- Motion (eliminating unnecessary moving of people or equipment)
- Waiting (eliminating unnecessary waiting time before the next phase and interruptions of process)
- Overproduction (eliminating unnecessary production or other actions)
- Overprocessing (eliminating poor tools or product designs that demand extra activity)
- Defects (eliminating unnecessary efforts for inspecting and fixing defects)
HOW TO BUILD AND MEASURE A LEAN AFTER SALES SERVICE PROCESS
In order to create lean after sales service processes, the current processes must be audited. This helps to eliminate the causes of the waste. The new lean processes are ideally built together with the people involved, based on the optimal value creating performance of the teams.
An outside view often helps to identify the hidden spots of waste and unused opportunities. Therefore we recommend a partnership with experienced, technology neutral after sales service professional like TDR. Together we can audit the current processes and innovate new, lean processes to serve your customers’ and business’ interests in an agile way.