The motto behind RapidCare™, “You call, we haul,” goes beyond shipping parts at a moment’s notice. Since May, incoming calls to the uniquely focused, standalone service and support division of AriensCo have been routed to technical support professionals at the new Technical Assistance Center (TAC). Having been weaved into the framework of RapidCare, the TAC provides Ariens and Gravely dealers with fast solutions to after-sales equipment support needs through a dealer-exclusive phone number and online dealer portal.
“The call center approach is the next stage in the development of our RapidCare division, for which our ultimate goal is to improve service request times and reduce machine downtimes,” said Tom Wright, senior vice president of RapidCare.
Though AriensCo has always provided technical support to its dealers by connecting trained service technicians to dealers through phone support and dealer portal communications, the TAC is continuous improvement upon that foundation. For example, the new structure, which is totally dedicated to dealer support, adds warranty administration and product lifecycle management support to the mix. Additionally, it incorporates new technologies like live metrics that address call spikes at the center. That data then feeds into an improved customer relationship management tool, or CRM, that provides insight into interactions with each customer in the network. “Using the CRM tool and warranty data enables us to identify common issues, and if warranted, report to the platform teams as a potential critical-to-customer issue that needs to be addressed,” Wright said.
While a main function of the TAC team is to resolve dealer issues, they also represent AriensCo dealer networks through three platform teams: snow, residential lawn and garden, and commercial lawn and garden. The technicians on these teams work closely with dealers to ensure they have access to equipment resources, like service manuals and parts diagrams, and to communicate dealer needs and perspectives for consideration in Ariens and Gravely product designs.
“The TAC team is specially trained to provide dealers with quality answers fast, but they also work closely with dealers to ensure their feedback is known and incorporated into product development,” Wright said.
Led by a senior platform manager and comprised of employees from marketing, manufacturing, sales and RapidCare TAC representatives, the platform teams address the critical-to-quality issues that can lead to dealer-wide communications, TAC team training and process updates on the production line.
“If the first TAC team technician can resolve the issue, great. However, if the issue is complex or unusual, the larger team works with the TAC to not only find a rapid resolution, but to keep the issue from reoccurring,” Wright said.
As new products and new technologies continue to emerge, the TAC team keeps itself current on the latest innovations by reinvesting in itself. Through career path assessments, team members identify training courses at the Francis Ariens Service School that they can enroll in to be increasingly helpful on dealer calls now and well into the future.
“By continuously diversifying and adding to the skillsets of our team members, the team not only becomes more effective in solving one dealer’s issues, but they become more efficient so they can get to the next dealer call faster,” Wright said. “That’s crucial for everyone’s continued success.”