“THERE IS AN OLD SAYING IN OUR INDUSTRY: A SALES REPRESENTATIVE SELLS THE FIRST MACHINE TO THE CUSTOMER, A SERVICE TECHNICIAN SELLS ALL THE MACHINES THAT FOLLOW”, SAYS NORBERT WOLTER, KYOCERA DOCUMENT SOLUTIONS EUROPE’S CSSD SENIOR GENERAL MANAGER.
2017 is the last year at KYOCERA Document Solutions for Norbert Wolter as Senior General Manager before his retirement. This year also marks a memorable one for the company as KYOCERA celebrates the 10thanniversary of the annual KYOCERA Document Solutions European Service Awards. Having dedicated his tenure at KYOCERA to this pivotal division, Norbert has helped create a center of excellence in celebration of KYOCERA Service Technicians’ remarkable skills in the repair and maintenance of KYOCERA’s products. This annual (and industry only), competition assists in uniting all service technicians across the EMEA region as they strive to win the coveted title “KYOCERA European Service Award Winner”.
The idea was born 15 years ago out of the close and trustful relationship between KYOCERA Document Solutions Germany (KDDE) and its dealership companies when technicians were assigned the crucial task of maintaining KYOCERA’s hardware devices. Soon after, as Norbert puts it, “they were not only fixing problems, but establishing themselves as KYOCERA’s quality guardians, assuring customers they have made the right choice when opting for a KYOCERA device,” explains Norbert.
“IN MY OPINION IT WAS OBVIOUS THAT WE SHOULD GIVE SOMETHING IN RETURN TO ALL THOSE LOYAL TECHNICIANS.”
This act of appreciation resulted in the first Service Awards which took place within the German marketplace. Not long after, the noble initiative sparked the interest of sales companies across the EMEA territories to what has resulted today in the 10th annual Service Awards. The ultimate goal in sight for the Sales Company’s dealer technicians is to become the European Service Award Winner. The title serves as a symbol of highly deserved recognition for unprecedented excellence. Yet, the path towards the trophy is as challenging as the profession itself: the service engineers across EMEA go through practical and theoretical tests which evaluate their skills. Then, the national winners gather in Europe to compete against one another for the final once-in-a-lifetime prize – a trip to KYOCERA’s factory in China or Vietnam and company’s headquarters in Japan. Nevertheless, the greatest reward remains the global recognition of extraordinary dedication and exceptional skills. “A Service Award winner is a Super Champion for KYOCERA”, says Norbert. “It is someone to whom we pay the highest regard.”
The world as we view it now has fundamentally changed. Digitalisation has become the buzz word over the past couple of years and this has transformed not only the core of the industry but also the nature of the service technician profession. As Norbert puts it, “On the one hand, you still need to be a good mechanical engineer but your real focus must be on the software; and I am only talking about machines. On the other hand, KYOCERA now offers a lot of software and applications to meet our customers’ requirements which our service technician must attend to.”
With the 10th anniversary of the Service Awards on the horizon, Norbert closes the chapter on a decade of palpable and positive change within the industry through his personal initiative. “The creation of the Service Award, to see it grow and become so successful, is something that I will take with me and be proud of. The moment we announce who the Service Award winner is and see the expression of surprise on the face of the winner is such a precious moment. I only wish for every technician to participate and strive towards achieving this recognition,” Norbert explains.
The future of KYOCERA’s technicians is more challenging, yet more rewarding and exciting: “Our future machines will continue to feature more functions and possibilities. It will be essential for the technician to predict a failure before it really happens. As a result, the role of technicians will change fundamentally, but we are readily preparing them and are excited to meet those challenges”.
Facing such trials, the Service Awards will serve as a great pillar of acknowledgement not only for the individual participating technicians but also collectively for the broader KYOCERA family. As per Norbert Wolter: “Our aim is to work closer with our channel partners and excite them on this service excellence journey with this brand. When we add value to our partnerships we are but one step closer in building a close knit KYOCERA family that will only aid our success in an ever challenging landscape.”
Service Awards 2017 – KYOCERA Document Solutions South Africa
South Africa has been outstanding in the Kyocera Global Service Awards in years gone by, having produced top 3 positions for the last 3 years in the European finals. This year we’ve already have 45* entries booked and 28* have completed the online questionnaire in their quest to be the best.