If you are a durable goods manufacturer, then it is likely that your company still operates a legacy system for warranty management. Legacy systems are costly to maintain and modify, since there are very few people inside the organization who remember how the system works Your company must employ people with specialized knowledge of the system, and if they leave the organization, their expertise walks out the door with them.
It is typically the exception rather than the norm for business users of the system to obtain the upgrade and enhancements they require because it involves so much development effort. As a result, the business may lack certain software features and functions needed to manage critical business processes and interactions. Instead, they must rely on manual efforts or process workaround to get their work done, which usually requires additional staff. Also, legacy systems often lack integration capabilities with newer offerings and can be a security risk to the overall Corporate Cybersecurity framework.
The net impact is that legacy systems can lead to operating inefficiencies, productivity issues, and costly errors. The challenges associated with legacy systems can hurt a company’s performance. However, there are solutions to these challenges.
Challenges Facing a Leading Building Products Manufacturer
Louisiana Pacific Corporation (LP Corp), a leading manufacturer of innovative building products, provides industry-leading service and warranties to help customers build smarter, better, and faster. LP Corp was facing many challenges with an aging warranty database, international claims processes, and inefficiencies in reporting/analytics, due to LP Corp’s legacy application managing its warranty processes.
The claims system was designed in-house and located on internal servers with limited remote accessibility. All data generated by external sources had to be manually entered into the system by office staff resulting in numerous touches slowing the process and creating opportunities for errors. Additionally, they were using a case management ticketing system, which was an add-on to another internal software package that was near its end of life.
It was time-consuming and costly for LP Corp to maintain these multiple legacy systems and difficult to find qualified IT resources familiar with the code. As might be expected, there was a duplication of effort required to make sure information was accurate, resulting in processing delays. Reporting was problematic due to limited capability for detailed data analysis. Subsequently, the longer claim cycle times resulted in more manager escalated customer complaints. For Vance Thomas, LP Building Solutions’ Corporate Warranty Manager, this meant early mornings and late nights resolving issues. More importantly, his headcount was continually growing to deal with these process inefficiencies.
A Flexible Solution
After an exhaustive search, LP Corp decided to implement a cloud-based, global system, powered by Mize, to optimize warranty claims and customer support processes. Mize enabled LP Corp to leverage best practices and standardize internal processes across all claim groups. Mize also provided a system that offers flexibility for future operations as well as improvements in analytics and forecasting.
The flexibility of the Mize solution allows LP Corp to manage various warranty policies, business rules, workflows, forms, and correspondence templates to meet the needs of multiple regions, product groups, and third-party contractors. With the Inspections Smart Blox from Mize, the LP Corp team can perform field inspections on any mobile device and generate warranty investigation reports. Mize mobile app on iOS and Android allows field inspectors to capture inspection data and pictures to support the claim process. All the communication is captured and tracked for each case and claim, including emails, comments, and photographs. The Mize application is integrated with SAP for financial and payment transactions.
Benefits of the New Solution
Mize has enabled LP Corp to make significant improvements in data quality and analytics. Also, LP Corp has been able to centralize its entire claims process into the single, cloud-based global system making it possible for all claims offices to work from the same database and eliminate the duplication of effort. As a result, the company has been able to consolidate offices. These improvements netted a 15% cost saving in the 1st year for LP Corp. The company anticipates 3X ROI over the five years life of the cloud solution contract from Mize.
LP Corp will continue to reap efficiency gains in the future, as the company can quickly incorporate new product lines into the Mize system, as well as easily migrate and incorporate product lines from any acquired companies into Mize. The cost savings from the new system will no doubt support future growth initiatives for LP Corp.
Discover Your Advantage
Would you like to achieve similar results in your company? Download our on-demand webinar recording to learn more about LP Corp’s warranty transformation. You’ll learn how Mize helped LP Corp reduce claims processing costs by consolidating multiple systems into a single, global application.
To learn more about the Mize Building Material Warranty Management Solution, Click Here.
Tim Nissen has built companies through marketing in categories including technology, manufacturing, energy, commercial real estate and business services.