To optimize the process and support their dispatchers, Konica Minolta decided to use software from the company ClickSoftware, for which WSC had already developed an interface to SAP. During the design phase, a so-called drip feed model was chosen to assign orders to technicians, so that they only see the next two orders on their mobile devices. “We advised Konica Minolta to employ this model, as it offers the greatest possible flexibility to prioritize even last minute incoming orders with very narrow SLAs” says Nicole Depping, WSC's director. Closely connected with SAP HR, it is possible to see important workforce metrics immediately. This allows absences, such as vacation time and sick days, to be automatically factored into the planning. Even Finance & Controlling is integrated. If, for example, a customer has exceeded his credit limit, incoming service requests with be classified accordingly and will not be automatically planned in ClickSchedule.
Satisfied Customers and Employees
Including the workforce was crucial for the solution's resounding success in its practical application. Their feedback and concerns were taken seriously from the start. Employees were kept informed of the project's progression, as well as having their knowledge explicitly tied in right from the design phase. To simplify the daily planning, for example, technicians can now check the next day's schedule after 5pm, so they can see the expected travel time to their first appointment. The duration of individual appointments is calculated according to a time frame centrally stored in the SAP system. The time frames were defined together with line managers and vary based on appointment type, such as problem, maintenance, network connection and so on.
Everyone involved is happy with the results. The number of customers visited has greatly increased, while reaction times have grown significantly shorter. Though the solution's focus is to keep SLAs, travel times between appointments have been reduced to about 30 minutes and less. The finely tuned planning process takes into account the current location of the technicians, as well as their particular qualifications.
Backline dispatchers have also had their workload significantly reduced through this solution. Before its introduction, backline customer service agents often had to take a break from their own tasks to help out. These employees are now back in the right place, meaning telephone availability for current and prospective customers has increased. In the initial project phases, planning was managed manually by dispatchers in ClickSchedule. This process has now been fully automated. Thanks to WSC, Konica Minolta has significantly improved its operating figures in three key areas. With faster turn-arounds, shorter travel times and qualified technicians on-site every time, the company is well positioned to provide customer satisfaction in a competitive market.