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Determining the Ideal Maintenance Service Level for Your Business

person repairing mobile device
It’s no secret that retailers today are faced with an increasing number of technologies being deployed into their stores. Focus areas for retailers include big data analytics, omni-channel and mobile initiatives, EMV, PCI Security, next generation POS, and other new technologies such as beacons and wearables. Since most of the time, these initiatives will result in a technology deployment, retailers are struggling to keep up with not only the technology rollout, but also the support and associated increase in warranty management and entitlement.

How do I Know What Service Level is Right for Me?

Rather than asking “What is right for me?” retailers should be asking a series of questions. Out-of-box maintenance packages are not customized to a retailer’s true needs, so they often end up spending unneeded time, money, and energy on these types of services. Ask yourself:

  • “What is the service level needed for each piece of hardware? For each store? For each season?”
  • “Does every item need onsite service, and if so, at what level? Will a depot/exchange program work instead?”
  • “Does every store need to be treated the same?” (i.e. top stores vs. less busy stores)
  • “Does quantity make it easier?”
  • “How will I manage it all?”

What Maintenance Services are Available from Level 10?

We offer multiple maintenance options to retailers, which are customizable by each retailer’s unique needs.

  • Standard Repair/Exchange/Advance Exchange – These options give a variety of shipping, repair, and spare pool options between Level 10 and a retailer.
  • Consumable Management - Level 10 uses an auto-replenishment system to automatically reorder store consumables at the right time, in the right place.
  • Onsite - Level 10 technicians are dispatched to store site for diagnosis and/or repair.
  • Level 1/2 Service Desk - Level 10 serves as a Level 1/2 service desk for projects, seasonal, nights/weekends, hybrid, or fully-outsourced.
  • Warranty Entitlement – Warranty entitlement contracts make a partner an extension of a retailer’s IT team and frees up the time of internal resources by allowing the partner the ability to communicate and execute on your behalf to handle repairs/replacements for items still within the original OEM warranty. The management of where each warranty is at for each unit in the field, not to mention the coordination of the fulfillment of it, is an extremely time consuming burden for an IT team. By sending a portion (or all) of warranty entitlements through a partner allows the minimization of communication efforts, communication gaps, errors, and potentially multiple legs of freight.
  • Warranty Enhancements – Warranty enhancements are another crucial element of a well-developed maintenance plan, as they can proactively keep units in the field and allow budgetary resources to be freed up for other company initiatives instead of entering into an untimely refresh. By contracting with a certified maintenance partner, you also have the ability to source OEM parts, even for the elusive EOL units.

The retailers who are finding success in the maintenance arena are those that are integrating their existing contracts and consolidating services, such as warranty entitlement/enhancement, general field services, store work, and projects.

Are On-Demand Services Available, or do I Need to Commit to a Service Plan?

Yes, on-demand (a.k.a. “per incident”) services are available, and many retailers find them useful. However, service plans allow for a superior level of service, data transparency, custom reporting, serial tracking, trend analysis, and strong spare pool inventory strategies, which in the end produces true value and cost savings.

How Can I Best Match the Size of My Business with the Right Service Level?

By examining current service levels coupled with the explosion of technologies in their stores, retailers can actually avoid increasing the amount of work needed to manage their hardware and provide better service to their stores. Analyzing equipment types, failure rates, size/location of stores, spare pool costs, warranty enhancements, and seasonal activity, can save a retailer anywhere from 20-45% on ongoing maintenance costs.

If you have any questions about specific service plans and how Level 10 can provide you with the ideal service level for your business, please contact us.

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