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MPS: Conducting 2nd Analysis

After reviewing your information and numbers from the 1st analysis and defining a MPS solution on certain pain points, it is time complete the 2nd analysis and strengthen the MPS solution you believe might be right for the customer.

The 2nd analysis provides great opportunity to build relationships with the customer that will help you win the MPS deal, make sure you conduct additional interviews and validate the pain points thru user experiences.

Here are some key steps that need to done to have a successful 2nd analysis:

1.  Take configurations pages on all devices. (printers, copiers, faxes)

2.  Confirm inventory of all devices and make sure you know which ones are leased and which ones are owned.

3.  Gather additional information that will validate your MPS solution that you came up with during your pre-strategy meeting (see last blog post).

4.  Interview, Interview, Interview – Customers define VALUE.

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August 26, 2010 Posted by | Customer Service Tips, Marketing Tips, Sales Tips Of The Day | Leave a comment

MPS: Pre-Strategy before 2nd Analysis

Before you go thru for a second analysis and collect another round of meter reads from copiers, printers, and fax machines, MPS reps should review the information that have collected and start to build a solution.  By starting to build your solution before the second analysis, you can identify gaps that you will need to fill to strengthen your solution, i.e. better interview info from employees or why there is a printer, copier, and fax in the one area.

Here are some questions MPS reps should ask themselves before going for their second analysis:

1.  Evaluate your data and information collected to make sure it has validity.

2.  Identify additional information you will need to validate your solution.

3.  Identify which pain points you think your solution should be built around.

4.  Identify ways you will want to get your customer excited about MPS and market your pre-solution around the pain points you have identified.

5.  Think about how your competitors would respond to your ideas and make sure you think of ways your solution will be unique.

August 25, 2010 Posted by | Customer Service Tips, Sales Tips Of The Day | Leave a comment

MPSA and Newfield IT – Webinar 8/25/10 11am need to become member to register

Join the MPSA and Newfield ITTo learn more about the Good… the Bad… and the Ugly… In performing Assessments in Managed Print Services.

During this free webinar you will hear the expert advice of someone who has done over 110 assessments, works as an independent body within the industry, and has invested heavily in developing products to automate the assessment process. Learn where the pitfalls are in the process and what’s fact vs. fiction?

RSVP for this Higher Education Event
Webinar Agenda:


Webinar Schedule:


  • Assessments – do they matter?

  • State of the market

  • Fact vs Fiction

  • Building the business case

  • Should you charge?

  • Date: August 25, 2010

  • Time: 11:00 AM (ET)

<RSVP for this Event>

Dedicated to your Success
If the MPSA can be of any assistance to you, please
feel free to contact any of our board members.

August 24, 2010 Posted by | Customer Service Tips, Marketing Tips | Leave a comment

MPS: Assessment Steps

The goal of a MPS assessment is to build a case for MPS and your offerings by collecting and documenting evidence and interviewing employees.  Remember, customers define value, so the more people you talk to the better you will understand value.

Your assessment should include:

1.  Tagging and Mapping all devices.  (Understanding why the devices are placed where they are)

2.  Obtain floor plan to demonstrate walking distant and proximity of devices to employees.

3.  Take configuration pages off all devices.

4.  If a device doesn’t provide a configuration page, ask users how many pages they print or copy in a week.

5.  Ask users about their experiences regarding each device.  Do they need color, finishers, etc.

6.  Obtain all contracts, costs, service agreements, long distance charges for fax machines.  Make sure you get all cost pertaining to printing and copying.

August 24, 2010 Posted by | Customer Service Tips, Sales Tips Of The Day | 1 Comment

MPS Training

Whether your MPS solution adds to new equipment or just retains the customer’s current equipment, training is an on-going process.  In many cases, customer don’t know how to even use all the features of their current equipment.  Besides training customers on equipment, as a MPS consulant you should demonstrate the process of supplies and service fulfillment as well as the invoice process. 

When adding new technology and solutions, here are some good questions to ask yourself:

1.  Who will get trained?  – Base this upon employee rolls within the company.

2.  When do they get trained?  – Want to make it a time when you have people’s attention.

3.  Who is the best person to the initial training, the follow-up training, and ongoing training?

4.  What type of end-users are you dealing with?  – Base this on user surveys and observe them perform daily tasks.

5.  How much will training cost?

August 11, 2010 Posted by | Customer Service Tips | Leave a comment

Components of MPS Customer Service

In many of my posts, I have spoken about the sales and discovery process for MPS, but today I want to talk about the customer service side of MPS.  A successful customer service plan is a BIG key to a successful MPS solution and keeping customers for life.  I believe there are four key components that need to be interwoven to have a successful MPS customer service program.

Here are the four key components:

1.  People:  Whether it is a service engineer, level one help desk, or customer service manager, good people are key to customer service.  Your MPS customer service people are the first to interact with your customer, so they must make a good impression.  You can have the best business processes and technology, but if you don’t have a good customer service team, your MPS program will suffer.

 

2.  Processes:  Once you have the right people, you need the right business processes.  Having common processes for each issue is very important.  If a customer can predict the outcome of an issue because you have quality common processes, it will create value for the customer. 

3.  Data:  In order to have good processes, your MPS customer service team must provide good data for and about your customers and you should use it as a way to measure your work.  You can have great people and great processes, but if you don’t have quality  information about your customer and their issues, than the customer will not see value.

4.  Technology:  In order to have great data, a MPS customer service team must be using great technology.  Your remote monitoring software must be up to par, your CRM must integrate with your sales and service team.  For MPS issues, you should have a “knowledge database.”  If you want to demonstrate that your customer service team is elite in the MPS space, technology is area to start.

Cheers.

August 3, 2010 Posted by | Customer Service Tips, Sales Tips Of The Day | Leave a comment

MPS: Why are MPS deals really lost?

A hot topic many MPS consultants have been asking me has been why they are losing deals.  Most MPS consultants think they lose a deal because of PRICE.  PRICE is not the main reason MPS deals are lost, in fact a lot of times even in today’s economy it only plays a small factor.   Here are some of the top reasons MPS deals fall short and some helpful hints to make you win more MPS deals:

1.  Lack of Executive Buy-in:  MPS consultants find buy in with a someone in the an organization and start the whole MPS process only to find out at the end that person cannot sign the deal.  The MPS consultant must have C-Level Executive suppport and a NDA signed before starting the MPS process to ensure there are sponsors engaged in this study.  Make sure you a CIO or CFO knows what you are doing and you have his or her support.

2.  Poor Alignment:  Many times the MPS consultants have not aligned their MPS solution with the company’s corporate strategy.  If the MPS solution doesn’t align with the corporate strategy there will be no executive support to make sure the deal is completed.  To make sure you understand the corporate strategy, use a MPS charter to avoid unclear expectations.  Throughout the MPS process, continue to monitor the MPS charter with the executives and decision maker.

3.  Bad Assessment:  The assessment or discovery stage of the project has to be taken very seriously.  MPS consultants must identify key pain points, workflow issues, needs, wants, and most importantly understand their costs.  Doing end-user interviews and not using assumptions during the assessment will help ensure a great assessmentAlso, during the cost consensus meeting, have the decision maker sign off that he or she agrees with your findings and cost before moving forward with a solution.

     Now this are not all the reasons MPS deals are lost, but they are 3 of the main ones.  As a MPS consultant you must make sure you continue to get Executive buy-in and support, do a great assessment, and make sure you align your MPS solutions towards the corporate strategy of your customer.

Cheers

July 13, 2010 Posted by | Customer Service Tips, Sales Tips Of The Day | 2 Comments

MPS: CHANGE

CHANGE inside a Managed Print Services solution can be the one factor that can potential derail the whole strategy.  Customers always have emotional and normal reactions to change.  During the MPS process, an MPS consultant will see normal and emotional reactions to change two different times: assessment and implementation stages.

1.  The first time an MPS consultant will see customers’ emotions due to assuming change is during the assessment process.  When a MPS consultant does a map of the facility and meets with end users about individual printers and why documents are received and processed a certain way, people will be very defensive about their personal printer or the way they do things.  People are creatures of habit and do not like change, so it is very important that during the assessment phase of the MPS process, the MPS consultant must make the end user comfortable when asking him or her about their printer and process.  Make a big deal about their job and celebrate the how their process is vital the business.  Make sure you include them in the assessment otherwise if feel threatened or left out, it will be tougher for you to get buy in from end users.

 *** Now many MPS consultants say who cares about the end users, the C-level Executives is the one who makes the decision. Well, when you can demonstrate buy-in from the end users during your close, your MPS solution will be a slam dunk!!*** 

2.  The second time an MPS consultant will see emotions due to change is during the MPS implementation stage.  When people see a new process or new technology they automatically become resistant.  A MPS consultant must have an action plan for implementation and must take great care in teaching and mentoring end users about the new solutions and technology.  

***One way to combat change is to do a controlled test of a new MPS solution with end users who are not technology literate.  During this test, the MPS consultant must truly teach and be there for the end user to make sure it runs smoothly.  If the non-educated tech people can get comfortable with the new solution and technology during a controlled one-on-one test, the MPS implementation will see less emotional and natural reactions.***

Cheers.

July 7, 2010 Posted by | Customer Service Tips, Sales Tips Of The Day | 1 Comment

MPS: Assess Your Managed Print Services Solution Success

MPS Success

 

Once a MPS solution has been implemented, it is time to “farm” your account.  During the MPS assessment and solution building process, you should have come up with key metrics to measure the success of the solution, but you should also evaluate your performance with the customer to start the referral process.  Assessing and demonstrating your success is essential in order to build a great MPS reputation. 

Below are some questions you should bring up during your review with your customer once the MPS solution has been implemented for a couple months to make sure your MPS assessment and solution building process is staying sharp. 

Did the MPS solution meet your organization’s budget needs?

Did the MPS assessment and solution building phase start and end on time?  Was too time consuming for you and your employees?

Were the issues identified handled correctly by the MPS solution?

Were the correct training and implementation resources deployed for this MPS solution?

With the MPS solution, does your organization have the tools to perform their tasks?

Did the MPS solution achieve the outcomes you set for this solution?

Remember this is by no means a comprehensive list of questions, but it should definitely serve as a building block for meeting of assessing and demonstrating your MPS success.

Cheers,

MPG

June 8, 2010 Posted by | Customer Service Tips, Sales Tips Of The Day | Leave a comment

MPS: Document Lifecycle and Understand in the flow of documents

Documents & Workflow

            The life of a document can be described many different ways, but I believe there are FOUR phases to the document life cycle.  Managed Print Service consultants should understand the document life cycle and understand how to chart the workflow for their client.  Understand documents and workflows can help you not only land a MPS client, but it will always help you “farm” that client.

FOUR PHASES OF DOCUMENT LIFE CYCLE

1.  CREATION

 

2.  CONSTRUCTION

 

3.  CHANGE

 

4.  STORE

            After understanding your clients document life cycle, you should examine and chart the way a certain department within your client’s office creates a document.  Below are some questions you can ask to build a chart the flow of how documents move within a department.  

  • How/Where/When does this key document in this department begin?
  • What equipment is used to begin this document process?
  • Where/Why/When/How does these document travel within this department?
  • Does/How/When this document travels outside this department?
  • How is the information on the document transformed into action?
  • What/How do people interact because of this document?
  • What/Which decisions in this department link these documents with people?
  • Which/What decisions outside this department affect this document?
  • What people in this department interact with this document?
  • What technology in this department interacts with this document?

 These are just some of the questions I ask, but remember you need to understand the people as well as the technology in the department that creates, produces, revises, and stores the document that you are charting.

Cheers,

MPG

June 7, 2010 Posted by | Customer Service Tips, Sales Tips Of The Day | Leave a comment