Service management typically involves maintenance and repair of products either in the field or at internal repair shops . Firms involved in service management may work on products they have sold or products manufactured and sold by others. A typical example involves an equipment manufacturer that also performs installation services, maintenance on installed units, and/or repairs on returned units. Each unit is termed a service item. Integration of service management with other supply chain functionality is illustrated below.
Linkage between a Service Item and Shipped Product . The shipment transaction automatically creates a service item for each item shipped to a customer, with information about the serial number (if applicable ), warranty period, and ship-to location. Service items can also be manually added, which is especially important when working on products not recorded as shipped.
Material and Resource Requirements for a Service Order . A service order can be created with one or more line items identifying the service items to be repaired. Material and resource requirements can be specified for repairing individual line items or for the entire service order. The products original assembly list can be used to identify needed materials, and the system retains the latest configuration of the repaired unit. Loaners can be sent and received.
Other service management capabilities go beyond these integration features. For example, resource requirements can be identified by skill level and location, which is especially helpful in scheduling field service personnel using the dispatch board capabilities. The system supports service quotes (which can be converted to service orders) and service contracts, troubleshooting diagnostic capabilities, and the identification of faults, symptoms, and resolution related to a service item.