For most businesses, client satisfaction and retention are the driving force behind our actions. Whether it’s a quick service call or a large multi-phase project, we do everything in our power to make sure we go above and beyond for our clients. And as our industry evolves, so do our clients’ needs and expectations. As service providers, this brings about several questions.
Do we continue to scale and bring on additional headcounts to meet these needs? Do we support additional technology or services to keep our clients engaged and happy?
There’s little doubt that most, if not all, IT service providers in commercial and resimercial environments have faced or will face these challenges. As technology continues to grow, experts at Rahi find themselves supporting AV and IT more than ever. Our clients want to work with a company that can support their entire infrastructure.
Challenges of scaling and expansion have been at the forefront of the AV integration industry from the beginning. We’re constantly being asked to think outside of the box and come up with a solution for the most complex issues.
Historically, we have found that regardless of a company’s size, these challenges still persist. In fact, it is the small to midsize companies that present the most innovative and robust solutions to overcome these challenges.
As we transition out of this global pandemic, we find the AV industry evolving yet again.
Hybrid Work Trend Continues to Impact Customers’ Needs
The hybrid work environment is changing how companies approach their space planning and technology needs. Businesses are now requiring occupancy counting solutions and services. Collaboration spaces need to be reassessed and redesigned with social distancing and occupancy limits in mind.
The demand for unique solutions during transitional periods, such as this, can define your company’s success. If you can supply a product at a time of rapid, unexpected demand, you can significantly increase your client retention. If you’re unable to adapt to your client’s business challenges and provide them with a malleable solution, your clients will find someone who can solve their problem.
Managed services is one of these solutions that can be used to adapt to these ever-changing environments. However, it’s a service that not many IT and AV solutions provider companies offer.
Most businesses are under the impression that offering managed services is only for larger IT solutions companies. They don’t know if they have the ability and human capital to support such a robust program. This is where most companies are falling short.
Managed services are the single most effective way to drive client satisfaction and meet long-term retention goals. When you’re only engaged with your clients on a per-project basis, you lose the opportunity for growth.
You have to wait until the next project to continue business with that client. However, if you’re already engaged in a support contract with a client, you and your team become the default and first contact they reach out to when they’re facing new business challenges, troubleshooting issues, or creating new ideas.
This relationship organically gives businesses a “leg up” on the competition when new projects are initiated and provide a stable revenue source.
Years ago, smaller firms were reluctant to introduce managed services into their offerings. For most, the upfront cost in technology and headcount, paired with little-to-no contracts in place, made it a risky decision. They came across many daunting questions.
How do we handle system monitoring? How do we handle break/fix deployment out of our market? How do we hire the right embedded employee halfway across the country?
Today, adding managed services to your offerings has become easier and more cost-effective than ever. By leveraging partner networks, businesses have a broader pool of resources and technology to provide a truly custom-tailored solution for clients without redefining their own business model. As businesses gain more contacts, they can start pulling some of those services in-house and organically grow their practice without risking that heavy initial investment.
Making the move to expand and grow your business can be intimidating. However, by mitigating your risk and leveraging the resources and tools available to your business, you can grow your managed services offerings and become more valuable to your customer base.
Brandon Sorensen is the EVP of Sales, US West, Rahi Systems, which is a global provider and systems integrator of full-service IT solutions and services based in California and members of USAV.
A version of this article originally appared on our sister publication Commercial Integrator‘s website.
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