We’ve heard it again and again, but there really is no denying it – customer service is the key to success. It’s the key to collecting customers, meeting their needs, and ensuring that they come back again and again. With the right information and the right tools, your customer service team could be the back bone of your company and take your business to a brand new level of success.
A customer making an enquiry into your services or products is not going to wait a week for your answer. Chances are, if you don’t respond to their questions quickly, they will simply go elsewhere to find what they’re looking for and stick with a company that can give them the information they need when they need it. This is why the response time of your customer service department is one of the most important features of the service. You need to make sure that your employees are responding promptly to customers online and when talking on the phone or in person to customers your employees need fast access to the information that customers need. This can be done with an efficient information management system as well as thorough training before they start the job. It’s useless for a customer service employee to be given the task of responding to questions that they themselves don’t know the answers to.
One of the first responsibilities of the customer service team is to establish the customer’s expectations. This is where many young companies go wrong: they misinterpret what it means to advertise themselves and set the customers’ expectations too high. Don’t promise to your customers that you’ll jump over the moon if that’s not something that you’re capable of doing. Instead, your customer service team should be making sure that your customers are clear on what your services and products include.
On top of ensuring that you clearly establish your capabilities, the way that your employees treat your customers will likely establish what others come to expect when they approach your company. If your employees treat your customers poorly then other customers will have low expectations and likely won’t expect you to meet their standards. However, if your treat your customers consistently well and manage to maintain that high standard of customer service, your customers will have high expectations. This means that they will consider you to be capable of meeting their needs and by maintaining that high standard they will keep coming back with the understanding that their expectations will always be met or exceeded by your company.
Efficient risk management is one of the most difficult aspects of customer service and customers aren’t always predictable enough for you to be able to give your employees the right answers. You customer service team members need to be able to think for themselves and out together solutions quickly rather than starting a game of Chinese whiskers amongst their superiors in order to find answers. There is no right way to answer a customer complaint, but there are methods and strategies that your employees can utilise to ensure that you don’t lose any customers. You can learn risk management strategies through customer service courses and by offering these courses to your employees you will be supplying them with valuable tools that will allow them to appropriately and efficiently resolve issues independently. So, when a customer makes a complaint, your customer service team will be able to quickly find a solution that will make the customer happy and ensure that any negative consequences as a result of the error are minimised.