Bosch revamps customer support

New approach integrates technical support, training and engineering
Sunday, April 1, 2007

FAIRPORT, N.Y.--Bosch Security, like many security manufacturers, sees the security market migrating away from a product focus and toward a solutions focus. This understanding has led the company to redesign the way it serves customers and create the Customer Solutions Support Team, which will combine the training, technical support and applications groups within the company.
"Customers are going to see a better-suited group of people to answer more complex questions," said Leon Chlimper, Bosch Security's vice president of systems. For example, rather than an incoming call simply being routed by tech support to the person who knows most about the product that's "broken," a sales engineer might be involved to make sure the system has been correctly designed and someone from the training group might be dispatched to ward off future problems. "It's about the quality of the information that you're relating," said Chlimper. "A highly technical guy is going to be talking to a highly technical guy."
People need to understand, said Chlimper, that Bosch will essentially be transitioning from a call center, where the operators merely routed calls and initiated the problem solving, to a technical support center, where the problem-solving can begin and end. "A call-center mentality is to churn calls," Chlimper said. "A tech support center has to resolve issues."
To measure the effectiveness of the new concept, Bosch will be directing customers to a web survey following customer support calls, in an attempt to get instant feedback. "I can guarantee you that during the first three months, we'll get 90 percent negative feedback," said Chlimper, "because they're accustomed to getting on the phone in the first five minutes, and now they might have to wait 12 minutes. But, as they start realizing that it only took one phone call to solve the problem, that the person on the other end was knowledgeable, that he was helpful, they'll say, 'These guys are doing something right.'"