Posted On: May 25, 2023
Heating and cooling technical support is not a sexy program. Unlike big marketing campaigns, technical support programs are just that – technical. There’s nothing exciting about that to most people. That is unless your livelihood depends on the product you put your hands on each day. Every OEM will have product quality issues but to our customers, what separates the OEMs is how well supported the dealer feels selling, installing, and servicing them. Allied is uniquely positioned to deliver a packaged approach of the highest standard of heating and cooling technical support after the sale. What’s our best weapon? The Distributor Service Rep (DSR).
The DSR is the key to having the best supported product in the industry. What makes DSRs your best weapon and how can you value what a DSR brings by technically supporting product? We’ll look at insights from DSRs and their dealers on how important technical support is to their business. DSRs are faced with significant challenges though in how well they can support dealers. First, let’s break down what a DSRs role covers.
Heating and cooling technical support is the education and support of the installation, servicing, maintenance, and troubleshooting before, during, and after the sale of our product. This includes but is not limited to the technical training we offer, the dealer’s access to a local technical expert backed by the factory (DSR), Allied’s tech service team answering phone calls and emails from the field to our technical literature accuracy and accessibility. It includes our warranty and labor programs and how smooth that process to use both is. It also includes access to OEM parts and our labor rates that help to empower field authority a DSR has in supporting their dealers.
Heating and cooling technical training teach the skills needed to design, develop, implement, maintain, support, and operate our equipment. Technical training requires the trainer to have an extensive working knowledge of our equipment and by Becca Kingery, Sr. Manager, Marketing Programs 32 its components combined with national and local licensing codes and regulations.
The role of a technical trainer has historically been blurred and technical trainers have been deployed to cover features and benefits out in the field. Heating and cooling technical content requires engineering-level knowledge, technical writers, quality production, and a team of product experts to pull the material together so that our trainers can teach themselves how to train trainers so they can technically train and support their dealers.
Why is the DSR your best weapon?
Because they are:
1. Local to the dealer
2. Extremely passionate about supporting their customers
3. Technically proficient and naturally competitive.
DSRs, like our own trainers, are tasked with too much responsibility and not enough bandwidth, both very limiting factors in their ability to support dealers. Being best supported is not a long shot. Recent dealer survey uncovered that 60% of dealers will not buy from a distributor that does not offer technical training and support. The key takeaway from that study is do more of it! There are 196 DSRs in the program today; half of which are level 3 and 4. Seventy percent will and can train their dealers. This is a tremendous advantage in supporting dealers locally. A well supported dealer is a loyal dealer.
Forty percent of DSRs answered the question, ‘is Allied taking the DSR Program in the right direction?’. Ninety-one percent agreed. When asked what it would mean to them for Allied to push being the best supported product in the industry they said:
“There’s a sense of pride in being involved in the support.”
“It would mean everything to me when contractors trust me to support them.”
“It would be huge! Allowing for separation from the competition.”
“It makes it easier to sell the product knowing it is well supported.”
“Gives dealers greater confidence in purchasing Allied product.”