There was a day when our sales department was also the parts department and the service department, and the installation department….you get the idea. With some healthy growth, we found ourselves in need of a separate Parts and Services (P & S) department. The 90s was the decade of the automotive industry, and oddly enough, that industry taught us how to be “response ready.” The P & S grew not only in its revenues but in its scope of work. We began to speak with new phrases such as “technical supervision,” “critical spares,” “first-level spares,” and “preventative maintenance.” We actually got to the point where the title Parts and Service really didn’t represent the department, so we proudly renamed it The Professional Services Group (PSG).
I clearly remember the days when a client called in for some service, and our Manufacturing Manager would tour the floor in search of a volunteer to go to the client’s site and make a repair. Simply put, our field installation and repair team was pulled from our manufacturing staff. It sounds awkward, but in looking back at it now, it was the birth of our PSG, and we just hadn’t realized it as such. We were just focused on satisfying the business at hand. Today we have a full-time PSG Manager and an assistant, three permanent staff on the road travelling from task to task, a fully outfitted tool trailer, real-time two-way radio communications, and four pickup trucks. This is a long way from “Hey, does anyone want to go to GM Oshawa and perform a maintenance check?”
It needs to be noted that the department didn’t just grow because we sold more equipment. Our team takes a very proactive role in our business. When an order is booked, our sales team must indicate to the PSG a contact who would be responsible for procuring parts and/or services. This individual is immediately contacted and made aware of the spectrum of services we offer. Often the client is quite taken by this proactive attention and ends up placing an order with the group. We also revisit our past projects on a regular basis, even if it is to remind our clients that the PSG is still here and on alert to respond to their needs. When you combine this operating model with the fact that our equipment has become more sophisticated, we end up viewing the PSG as a department of growth for many years. They are so often the front line with our customers, so they take pride in being a key ingredient as to why our clients return, and there is no greater compliment than a client who returns to purchase from you again!
Click here to visit our Professional Services Group page, where you can also download the PSG brochure.