-- The company has invested heavily in local headcount, service centers, and partnerships to ensure the highest levels of customer satisfaction
MOUNTAIN VIEW, California, Nov. 15, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Based on its recent research on the electronic test and measurement (T&M) market in Brazil, Frost & Sullivan presents Agilent Technologies with the 2012 Brazilian Frost & Sullivan Award for Customer Service Leadership. Over the last three years, Agilent has implemented significant customer-centric initiatives, allowing it to tremendously enhance its leadership position in the Brazilian electronic T&M market
"Brazil is a very attractive market for T&M equipment companies in the short- and long-term. As competition intensifies, consolidating a position in the market will depend on how well local factors are taken into consideration," said Frost & Sullivan Industry Director Jessy Cavazos. "Agilent's longstanding presence in the country – nearly four decades – and the tremendous expertise of its staff, its network of partners and distributors, its local service ability to offer custom service solutions, and its marketing efforts are the key factors that have enabled it to be a customer service leader in the market."
Agilent has steadily been increasing its headcount in Brazil. Most of its personnel have been with the company for a long time and have tremendous knowledge of the T&M business and applications. Dedicated account managers for strategic accounts ensure that Agilent's product roadmap is aligned with that of its key customers.
"Since the T&M market in Brazil is not yet mature, Agilent cleverly supplements its direct headcount with contractors and partners," added Cavazos. "This is necessary as customers mainly buy low-end instruments through distributors. Agilent's direct headcount focuses on supporting strategic partners who primarily handle the company's high-complexity products and distributors who deal with low-end products."
Agilent selects partners judiciously, weighing the geographic coverage, focus, and financial stability they bring to the table. Once selected, partners go through in-person educational and training programs and computer-based training materials regularly. Developing the skill set of its partners is a significant aspect of Agilent's customer service strategy in Brazil.
Further, Agilent has representatives in different regions to develop close relationships with end customers. Being physically close to customers enables the representatives to better understand their needs and set up meetings in a matter of days rather than weeks. This is important due to the size of the country, travel times, and the pursuit of opportunities as the Brazilian government attempts to spread economic growth across the country.
With Brazil as a key growth initiative, Agilent has made significant investments, including a world-class facility in São Paulo in 2011. The service laboratory is ISO 17025 accredited, which is valued by customers. Agilent has made significant investments in its service center for equipment to provide local services for new technologies in Brazil.
"Providing local services has been one of Agilent's key strategic initiatives and a key differentiator compared with the competition," noted Cavazos. "Agilent's local support calibration capability is impressive – service is available for 95 percent of the models Agilent sells in Brazil. This significantly lowers Agilent's turnaround time to weeks instead of months, which is impressive considering the fact that moving equipment in and out of the country is a tedious process."
All Agilent products come with a complimentary three-year repair warranty. The company provides full standard calibration for equipment it repairs in Brazil. Importantly, Agilent has kept its prices competitive despite heavy investments. This is due to a greater volume of business it attracts and the higher costs of exportation/importation incurred by key competitors.
Finally, Agilent's local language support capability has been instrumental to its success in the Brazilian T&M market. The company has invested strongly in providing online and direct customer support in Portuguese, which is crucial for seamless communication and customer satisfaction.
The high double-digit growth of Agilent's business in each of the last three years validates the company's customer strategy. In recognition, Frost & Sullivan is pleased to present Agilent with the 2012 Customer Service Leadership Award in the Brazilian electronic T&M equipment market. Each year, Frost & Sullivan presents this award to a company that has demonstrated excellence in the timeliness of offering quality services. The award recognizes efforts towards innovation, customer satisfaction and cost effectiveness of the service or products.
Frost & Sullivan's Best Practices Awards recognize 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 in order to identify best practices in the industry.
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