Want to be able to predict your maintenance work and take your customer experience to the next level? By making smarter use of available maintenance data and combining it with IoT and external open data, applications are possible that we didn’t even dare to dream of 5 years ago.  

This has allowed companies not only to continue and improve their services, but to develop new business models. This post explores a few companies who have done just that.

The rise of smart industry is in full swing. Companies in the manufacturing industry and technical service providers are increasingly using data and artificial intelligence to take significant steps in service, quality and customer satisfaction. The Covid-19 pandemic has accelerated this far-reaching digitisation and ‘fragmentation’ of service and maintenance.

Let’s take a look at how some companies are now taking the opportunity to develop new revenue models with the help of smart maintenance solutions.

New business models gaining momentum with Smart Maintenance

During the Covid-19 pandemic, it turned out that many things that we thought were once impossible are now not only possible, but a necessity. The technology has been available for some time, but companies were hesitant to make investments. Because of the urgency to facilitate mobile working and keep production levels moving, smart maintenance solutions, such as Remote Assist, started becoming adopted at an accelerated rate. This has allowed companies not only to continue to improve their services during the lockdown, but even to develop new business models.

Print machine manufacturer makes transition to service provider with smart industry solutions

A professional printing machine manufacturer was looking for ways to add more value to its customers by transforming from supplier to collaboration partner. HSO’s AI team helped the company set up the IoT infrastructure and develop a prototype, that, as part of the performance program, offered the customer more than a separate machine. It provided the customer with insights into the processes and a practical benchmark with which productivity could be increased and material waste minimised.  

By making these changes, the company was able to make the transition from machine supplier to service provider. Customers no longer buy a device, but they take print works as a service and pay per meter. This has many key advantages for the customer, who no longer have to make large upfront investments, but also for the supplier. In addition to a long-term relationship with the customer, they also receive continuous information about machine use and status, which allows them to further improve their products and services.

From selling parts to delivering flight hours

A technical service provider in the aviation industry was looking for a business model that would allow it to effectively unburden its customers, while at the same time, counting on stable revenues and improved margins. 

HSO helped develop a unique service: supplying parts for a fixed amount per flight hour for a fleet of aircraft. What we then saw was, instead of delivering and invoicing spare parts ad-hoc, they would be provided, only if there was a demand for them. Based upon information about flight hours, historical maintenance, time between repairs and customer-specific use of a device, we made advanced AI models that allowed the customer to calculate and offer the fixed price per flight hour for this unique service in the form of a service contract. 

Smart Maintenance solutions strengthen customer relationships

Earn more if your customer has more outages? For a technical service provider that maintains refrigeration installations, this business model was no longer correct. The company knew this and wanted to make the transition to ‘cooling-as-a-service’, in which the maintenance company uses technology and data to prevent malfunctions. HSO helped this company to make the transition, leveraging the technology and models that were needed. Knowing that customer satisfaction and turnover go hand in hand, this was a much needed shift for their business. 

Getting started with Smart Maintenance solutions

What we see in practice is that many companies feel the urgency to go along with the capabilities that data and AI offer, but don’t know where to start. In other words: how do you develop a first business case for smart maintenance that actually brings added value?  Start with choosing the right model for your business. Read our next post in series, Which Maintenance Model is Right for My Business?