The Basics of a Succesful Service Call

In this article I’ll give a basic outline of what I do on service calls.  I know that after several years in the field most technicians get into a routine of how to approach calls so I know it will not be the same for everybody and every company. But, this information may be particularly helpful to “new to the field” technicians in getting an idea of where to start and, as time goes on, how to develop a personal service call system. As for you seasoned techs, well, I’ll try to provide useful information on things you may have used in the past and have forgotten and can re-apply to your routine in the future.

Preparation Before the Service Call
First, make sure your service coordinator is getting all the pertinent information such as make and model, problem reported on the machine, customer contact name, phone number, full address, hours of operation, and department. Pricing should be talked about so there are no surprises once the service is complete. Nothing is worse than showing up on site and then finding out that either you or your customer, or both, don’t know the full situation.  Continue Reading

Lexmark; Can They Make a Comeback?

I’ve been servicing office equipment for the last 13 years. When I first started servicing printers, HP was the main contributor to our income with about 75 percent of the calls. Lexmark held its own with 20 percent and the other 5 was everybody else. Over the years I have seen a steady decline in Lexmark with a rise from other manufacturers. This last year I have noticed a resurgence of Lexmark. I still haven’t been servicing them much but I’ve seen a few new models in customer’s offices and more advertisements as far as promoting new products. In this article I would like to discuss a brief history of the company, my opinion, and where their future may be heading.

The Rise

In 1991 the Lexmark brand was bought from IBM by the investment group Clayton, Dubillier, and Rice.  They took the printer division and setup shop in Lexington, Kentucky. Over the next several years, under the direction of a former IBM vice president, the company grew larger than anyone would have predicted. By the end of 1994 Lexmark was fourth in the retail market, they officially dropped the IBM logo, and with their huge impact in the market place everybody was taking notice.  With huge endorsements from Microsoft and Lexmark’s unique LAN based software, Markvision (1995), which allowed users to track machine status, view all machines on the network and allowed IT personal to change settings and fix machines before calls were even being made, Lexmark had created their own identity. Companies could now contribute their increase in efficiency to Lexmark’s products and services.  Continue Reading