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Customer Service & Relationships. What is Customer Service? No easy way to define May view Customer Service in 3 ways – As an activity A task that is.

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Presentation on theme: "Customer Service & Relationships. What is Customer Service? No easy way to define May view Customer Service in 3 ways – As an activity A task that is."— Presentation transcript:

1 Customer Service & Relationships

2 What is Customer Service? No easy way to define May view Customer Service in 3 ways – As an activity A task that is performed to satisfy customer needs Order processing, billing & invoicing, product returns, claims handling – As a performance measure Success in achieving goals % of orders delivered on time, time to complete orders – As a philosophy Firm-wide commitment to customer satisfaction A focus on quality

3 Customer Service The ability of logistics management to satisfy users in terms of – Time – Dependability – Communication – Convenience

4 Aspects of Customer Service Time – Reduced order cycle time Dependability – The reliability of the service encounter Consistent order cycles Safe delivery Complete delivery

5 Aspects of Customer Service Communication – Two-way exchange of information – Complete information exchange Convenience – The ease of doing business with the other party – Must assess extent to which the customer(s) is (are) willing to pay for this ease

6 Customer Service Objectives Should be – Specific – Measurable – Achievable – Cost-effective MUST take the customer’s viewpoint into account Benchmarking – Comparing performance to the competition’s performance

7 Performance Measures ALWAYS stated from the view point of the customer 2 key components – Measures used before shipping to customer – Measures used after shipping to customer

8 Pre-Shipment Performance Measures Product Availability – % availability in base units (order, product, dollars) Order Cycle Time – Time from order placement to order receipt – Speed and consistency Distribution System Flexibility – Response time to special requests

9 Pre-Shipment Performance Measures Distribution System Information – Speed, accuracy, & message detail of response Distribution System Malfunction – Response and recovery time requirements Post-sale Product Support – Technical information, spare parts, equipment modification – Response time, quality of response

10 Post-Shipment Measures Orders received on time Orders received complete Orders received damage free Orders filled accurately Orders billed accurately

11 Implementing Customer Service Standards Set standards – Must be realistic but high enough for competitive advantage Focus on quality Communicate with customers – Set standards with customer input – Communicate standards with customers Control procedures – For measuring, monitoring, and controlling – Amend or discontinue standards as appropriate

12 Types of Buyer/Seller Relationships Arm’s Length Relationships Type I Partnerships Type II Partnerships Type III Partnerships Joint Ventures Vertical Integration

13 Arm’s Length Relationships Last for single transaction No commitments made for future transactions Price is the most typical deciding factor Can minimize risk to both carrier & shipper May not result in lowest price for shipper Appropriate when carrier’s service offerings are considered commodities or standard

14 Type I Partnership Short-term contractual relationship (typical, 1 yr) Requires little investment on part of either party Limited scope of activities Similar to arm’s length relationship except – Longer-termed – May include guarantees by both parties I.e., shipper may guarantee minimum volume I.e., carrier may guarantee delivery times, or minimum portion of fleet dedicated to shipper

15 Type II Partnership Contractual relationship Generally longer-termed than Type I’s (typical, 2 – 5 years) May require investment by either party Scope of activities generally larger

16 Type III Partnership Not normally governed by contract No formal endpoint to relationship Assets used in relationship may be jointly owned Shared scope of activities is substantial In essence, carrier performs all transportation services needed by shipper Shipper is only client of carrier in most cases

17 Joint Venture Similar to Type III New firm is created with investments from both parties Focus is for each party to benefit from the other party’s expertise Example – Encompass JV b/n American Airlines and CSX Railroad created to develop global booking & tracking system for freight movements

18 Vertical Integration Essentially, the use of private fleets Firm requiring transportation services fulfills this need internally

19 Third-Parties Company that supplies/coordinates logistics functions across multiple links in the logistics supply chain. Essentially, a third-party acts as the link between the – Seller/shipper – Buyer/receiver

20 Benefits of Using Third-Parties Lower costs Improved Expertise/Market Knowledge & Access to Data Improved Operational Efficiency Improved Customer Service Ability to Focus on Core Business Greater Flexibility

21 Third-Party Contracts: Suggested Minimum Contents Identify the parties Commit shipper to tender shipments Commit carrier to transport shipments Contain contract rate or rates for the transportation services to be provided Assign vehicles for continuing time or provide that the service is designed to meet shipper’s distinct needs Retain by carrier while in effect and for minimum of 3 years thereafter

22 Common Sections Found in Third-Party Contracts Disclosure of Goods – Describes nature of the product being shipped – Special handling or temperature requirements, nature of hazard (if any) and value Responsibility for Goods Routing, Mode, and Method of Operation Term, Termination, & Modification

23 Common Sections Found in Third-Party Contracts Volume Requirements Scope of Operation Performance Standards – Transit time, pick-up/delivery, damage rates, billing accuracy Operational Standards – Indemnification – Put at end of contract Force Majeure – If one of the parties is in breach due to Acts of God, or force of nature, protects the party so affected

24 Common Sections Found in Third-Party Contracts Billing and Payment – ALWAYS include listing of prices and charges levied by the third party in the body of the contract – Refer to other documents or tariffs may be confusing, and in some cases, illegal Applicable Law Assignability – Used if third-party unable to meet its vehicle requirements

25 Common Sections Found in Third-Party Contracts Breach of Contract – Defines what constitutes breach, process to be used to rectify breach, and process for termination – Consider including “incentives to improve or comply” rather than just “punish” Dispute Resolution – Arbitration Confidentiality

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