Based on its recent analysis of the calibration services market, Frost & Sullivan recognises Agilent Technologies, Inc. (Agilent) with the 2012 Europe Frost & Sullivan Customer Service Leadership Award.
"With a highly integrated team of professionals and an unswerving focus on resolving customer queries and meeting their changing requirements, Agilent has performed exceedingly well in terms of delivering the highest quality of calibration services," notes Frost & Sullivan Research Analyst Prathima Bommakanti. "A high degree of responsiveness to customer feedback and steady customer interaction has helped the company develop better services, while gaining a reputation for utmost reliability and trustworthiness."
Persistent focus on maintaining calibration service quality (in relation to equipment that has very stringent measurement uncertainties) gives Agilent an edge over other providers of calibration services. Moreover, the accredited calibrations of Agilent allow for a wide number of measurement parameters, unlike its competitors whose focus is comparatively limited.
The other factor that distinguishes the company's service quality is its strong emphasis on delivery metrics such as internal turn-around time (TAT) and ship-on time (SOT). For instance, in fiscal 2011, the calibration SOT for the company was as high as 95 per cent.
In addition to providing such a high level of service quality, Agilent also has an exceptional feature to electronically store all its calibration certificates in a website – Infoline. Infoline enables customers to save time by helping them efficiently manage their assets online. In addition to allowing customers to download the calibration certificates without any extra charge, the website also helps customers set up service requests and notifications 24/7.
"Delivering the right service support at the right time is embedded in Agilent's DNA," remarks Bommakanti. "To continue this legacy of continual customer engagement and maintaining a satisfied customer base, Agilent conducts customer satisfaction surveys on a weekly basis, but, incredibly, does not survey the same customer more than twice in a year."
On a weekly average, Agilent collects approximately 25 customer responses, which are reviewed by the services management team weekly. Taking all the customer feedback and responses into account, the company interacts directly with a customer who has given the company a score of less than 6 out of 10 and handles the improvement suggestions subsequently.
Apart from this, the company also makes an effort to understand its perceived value among customers who have given the company a full score of 10. In 2011, the average customer feedback score on service timeliness for its repair and calibration services across Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA) was 8.3 out of 10 (based on 1,055 customer responses), which demonstrates its excellence in this arena. On calibration services alone, the score was even higher (8.6).
"In an effort to augment its service portfolio to meet changing customer needs, the company has recently introduced the first-ever service in a box solution for products that are sold through its network of distributors," adds Bommakanti. "This solution – Agilent Advantage Service Pack – is available for customers with a premium warranty of three years and includes the fastest TAT in the industry, prompt repair service (three to five days) along with an entire calibration service (including a certificate and a measurement report)."
Being involved with more than 35 standard groups and associated with calibration standards committees that support ISO/IEC 17025:2005, ILAC-G8, ISO Guide for Expression of Uncertainty and ANSI/NCSLI Z540.3, gives an added leverage to the company to test any kind of measurement specifications, improving the utility of the instruments. This provides added value to end customers without any additional cost.
Agilent also offers accredited calibrations (with accreditations from European bodies such as UKAS, COFRAC, ENAC, ISRAC), standard lab calibrations offered by its UK Centre of Expertise in collaboration with the UK National Physical Laboratory and, country-specific calibration services such as Poverka service for its Russian customers. With such comprehensive service offerings, Agilent has provided calibration services in the EMEA region to more than 3,000 customers across 27 different countries in its 2011 fiscal year.
This Frost & Sullivan Award is presented to the company that has demonstrated excellence in quality, timeliness and cost of service as well as the impact of service on customer value.
Frost & Sullivan Best Practices awards recognise companies in a variety of regional and global markets for demonstrating outstanding achievement and superior performance in areas such as leadership, technological innovation, customer service, and strategic product development. Industry analysts compare market participants and measure performance through in-depth interviews, analysis, and extensive secondary research to identify best practices in the industry.
About Agilent Technologies
Agilent Technologies, Inc. (NYSE: A) is the world's premier measurement company and a technology leader in chemical analysis, life sciences, electronics and communications. The company's 18,700 employees serve customers in more than 100 countries. Agilent (agilent.com) had net revenues of $6.6 billion in fiscal 2011.
About Frost & Sullivan
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