Author: Patrick Stone, MBA Concrete Industry Management Candidate 2021
There is a lot of talk about the “Cloud.” Whether we hear it on Television, on our favorite social media site, or just in a conversation with our friends, the real question is not what the cloud is but what it can do for us. We use it every day and may not know we are using it. If I had to make one statement about cloud-based technology is that it makes our lives easier and more efficient.
Having worked in both the Ready-Mix Concrete Industry and Software Industry, I understand how important it is to use advanced, cloud-based technology to deliver superior customer service. The ready-mix industry is very fast-paced and customer-centric. Building a new business requires a strong emphasis on customer service and making their lives easier. Let’s evaluate the ways cloud-based technology can help deliver superior customer service.
One crucial aspect for both you as a supplier and your customer is creating an accurate record of what is being delivered and accepted for each concrete delivery. With the use of a web-based eTicketing solution, you can streamline the process of delivery and acceptance, all while creating an accurate paperless ticket record. Because this ticket is stored in the cloud, it does not take up unneeded storage space in both your office and the customers while being easily accessible if needed. In the same respect, you can allow your customer to access their own web portal with direct access to their tickets stored in a safe cloud environment. Through this technology, you help your customers get paid quicker, save time and money by having their ticket information easily accessible without the need to dig through piles of paper to find one delivery ticket.
Another way cloud-based technology can help deliver superior customer service is by increasing transparency. This transparency is based on giving your customers accurate and up to date information as it is happening. Through a cloud-based dispatch and GPS solution, you can provide your customers a clear understanding of their delivery status and the exact location of their truck. With a cloud-based Dispatch solution, you can also improve your internal transparency by giving critical members of your team access so they can have the same information your dispatchers have. This can drastically reduce the number of phone calls your dispatchers receive asking about orders and how much concrete is being shipped on a given day. With a cloud-based GPS solution, you will know exactly where your trucks are on route to your customer’s project-based and the route driven. So how does this technology improve customer service? Let’s face it, reputation and building trust with your customer is everything. Providing them accurate information never puts your credibility in doubt, and they can always count on the information you provide is precise. This technology also helps you as a concrete supplier by providing better data for improved decision making.
Cloud-based technology is here to stay and helping to eliminate antiquated programs and processes. Having a safe environment to store your information easily accessible for years to come no doubt saves you money and time while increasing efficiencies. It provides a way to make your business run more smoothly while making your customer’s lives easier. As you can see, cloud-based solutions can drastically improve customer service through better data capturing and the accessibility of the information. It also improves communication, transparency, and overall efficiencies. If you haven’t considered it in the past, you may want to now because your competitors will.