Competitive edge Featured

8:00pm EDT May 26, 2007

Cleveland-based Lincoln Electric Co. is not only an expert in the design, development and manufacturing of welding products, it strives to be an expert in the area of customer service, as well.

Rick Trivisonno, Lincoln Electric’s director of customer service and community affairs, says his company wants to provide a total welding solution to its customers, so it continues to maintain technically trained field sales representatives and an application engineering department for customer support.

To further enhance customer service, the company recently incorporated industry-leading service standards that were benchmarked from some of the world’s most successful companies.

Its customer service department was reorganized, and the yearlong process incorporated operating practices from Six Sigma and training principles from Dale Carnegie, as well as leading procedures, methods and measurable reliability standards.

Technically knowledgeable customer service representatives now handle incoming calls to immediately help with cross-functional issues. Employees are equipped with the latest customer support technology and are empowered by Lincoln’s management team to make customer-focused decisions to speed inquiry and warranty processing.

Lincoln Electric also has programs to address service defects. It monitors fill rates for products, promise and delivery dates for shipping to customers, and warranty fulfillment times for immediate equipment repair. When a customer orders replacement parts that are out of stock, the company offers free upgrades for next-day shipments.

To recognize its VIP clients, Lincoln Electric offers incentives to its top distributor customers as a way to reinvest in their future growth. The Chairman’s Reward for Performance Excellence also recognizes its top distributor customers.

HOW TO REACH: The Lincoln Electric Co., (216) 481-8100 or www.lincolnelectric.com