NEW research, commissioned by United Parcel Service (UPS), reveals that 78 per cent of small to mid-size industrial machinery companies believe their customers' expectations for after-sales service are rising.
But only 12 per cent of those manufacturers say replacement parts and service are top differentiators for their business, said the UPS release.
The study, by IDC Manufacturing Insights, indicates that while manufacturers focus on developing and deploying new machinery, the buyers need after-sales support to maintain it.
"Industrial machinery manufacturers are in a challenging situation," said Brian Littlefield, UPS director of industrial manufacturing and distribution.
"Their pipeline depends on developing new products, yet over one-third say that 50 to 75 per cent of their profitability comes from after-sales service," said Mr Littlefield.
"For many, enhancing service after the sale could be a way to differentiate from the competition and offer potential for revenue growth," he said.
Fifty-six 56 per cent of industrial machinery manufacturers manage after-sales service in-house and have no plans to outsource.
The remaining 44 per cent now use, or plan to use, a third-party service provider for long-term maintenance.
The results are based on a March 2015 survey of US-based industrial machinery providers with a global customer base and between US$10 million and $50 million in annual revenue.
All survey participants said more than half of their business was in North America, with the near-remainder divided evenly between South America, Europe and Asia. A small percentage of business was located in the Middle East and Africa.
The UPS Industrial Machinery Manufacturing Insights executive summary can be downloaded at UPS.com/IndMfg.
UPS serves manufacturers and distributors of industrial products with comprehensive supply chain services that include end-to-end visibility, warehousing, inventory management, inspections, multi-modal global delivery, returns handling, e-commerce, and insurance and financial services.
Source : HKSG.