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How service providers can meet the changing expectations of their customers

Traditional IT systems are no longer adequate in supporting service providers to achieve their business objectives. The expectations of service providers’ customers have moved to a whole new level and it’s up to the service providers themselves to rise up to the challenge. Planon’s webinar “How to fulfil your business objectieves, key market insights for FM service providers,” hosted together with Verdantix, focused on these challenges. The webinar also showcased the benefits of and need for a contract-centric platform, and how this can facilitate service providers in realizing their ambitions.

The basis of the webinar was a number of key market insights gained through independent research by Verdantix, a research and consulting firm. Verdantix interviewed 50 European management executives, working in a variety of organizations, about the growing trend for outsourcing their facility management (FM). The interviews focused on the expectations these customers have of service providers and on upcoming FM developments.

Data quality and compliance

The research results clearly show the main challenges for customers revolve around data quality and proving contract compliance. The findings are a wake-up call for service providers, since more than half of the respondents do not trust the performance data their suppliers share.

A similar number of interviewees find it challenging to obtain proof of contract compliance from their service provider due to performance monitoring gaps. This lack of trust and transparency in performance data has enormous consequences for the relationship between service providers and their customers, and negatively impacts customer satisfaction.

This is reinforced by the results of the study: 42% of respondents mention “poor quality of services” and “incorrect billing due to poor quality data” as two key challenges they encounter with their service provider.

If you want to explore the results of the study and what they mean for service providers, we invite you to download the white paper “Digitizing & improving operations and relationships with customers”.

Increasingly complex contracts

When you analyze the research results, data quality and compliance have become key factors in meeting customer expectations. The importance of these factors has grown due to the increased complexity of contracts between service providers and their customers over the last few years.

The introduction of more performance and quality measurement components in contracts and the large number of “financial rules” and “collaboration rules” between customer and supplier, make it more important to analyze performance and direct workflows based on digitized data.

Strong business objectives for service providers are improving customer satisfaction and profitability. The introduction of new business models is a key objective around raising the low margins in the sector. Selling a solution that boosts productivity by offering measurable quality components to prove performance is a much more interesting story to tell for service providers than offering a regular services contract. Continuous monitoring of contract compliance and financial risks have become a foundation for making a good profit.

An integrated software platform

Both customers and service providers can benefit greatly from an integrated software platform. Such a system can monitor quality and contract compliance, deliver transparency and enable data exchange. A contract-centric software platform that can integrate with customer technology has become essential. However, this will require a change for a large number of providers. The legacy systems many of them use is not suited to the level of engagement and insights that the modern customer expects.

Integrated software platforms can help improve quality of service delivery and play an instrumental part in setting up dashboards that monitor performance metrics in real- or near real-time. This can help customers assess the performance of their service provider(s) and help both parties act swiftly in case of any issues. This can result in more effective service delivery by a supplier and achieve higher customer satisfaction levels. Moreover, choosing such an integrated platform can give service providers a competitive edge.

Planon Universe for Service Providers

Planon Universe for Service Providers is a unique integrated software platform that is designed especially for this segment. It focuses on creating operating efficiency in a service providers’ core processes by eliminating contractual risks and increases customer value through accessibility and transparency.

If you want to learn more about the research conducted by Verdantix and how FM service providers can meet their customer expectations and fulfil their own business objectives, we invite you to view the on-demand webinar we recently organized with Verdantix.

Martijn Dam is Product Marketer at Planon

Martijn Dam

Solution Services Specialist

Martijn has worked within the international facility management software industry since 2003 in various positions including project management, business consultancy and sales. Martijn joined Planon in 2018 and is currently a Solution Product Marketer for our service provider solutions, including product positioning and go-to-market strategies. With his experience at several local and international service providers, he is a subject matter expert in digitalizing commercial FM processes.

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