To effectively cater to your customers’ wants and needs, it is very important to have specific customer service etiquette, delivery, and consistency in how your customers are treated. In addition, in today’s very competitive world, staying ahead of the crowd is pretty difficult so one of the main ways to do so is by delivering consistent, excellent customer service experiences.
Here are five ways to maintain high customer service outcomes:
- Have organization-specific guidelines and policies. When hiring and managing customer service employees, it is crucial to outline and specify guidelines that are needed and expected to succeed in that position. Different organizations and positions require different customer service characteristics. For example, the customer service skills needed for a fine dining restaurant are different than those of a bank. Therefore it is essential to create a detailed job description outlining the roles and responsibilities as well as a list of the qualifications necessary to fulfill this position effectively.
- Use customer service assessments. Customer service employees represent the face and brand of your organization, so it is extremely important to hire individuals that reflect your organization’s core values, aims, and beliefs. Customer service assessments reveal whether a candidate will be right for your specific needs. For example, these surveys measure how well a person fits the behaviours and characteristics of a specific customer service position and can be industry-specific for hospitality, healthcare, financial services, and retail. This sort of tool can be most helpful in determining if a person will fit into your culture.
- Be experts. In customer service positions, it is imperative that one is able to show your customers that you have extensive product knowledge. No matter what industry you are in, competition is steep and customers are faced with many options. In order to have a competitive edge, you want to make sure that every customer service representative has the information and resources needed to show customers they are valued, respected, and cared for. In addition, customer service people need to know the policies and procedures for your organization, however, they also must be given some flexibility in order to ensure that every customer will remember how their problem was resolved rather than what the problem actually was. In other words, when something goes wrong and it is brought to their attention, they should thank the customer for bringing it to their attention, ask them what would make them happy and then try to accommodate them to the best of their ability. You want them to be “gasp-worthy” in correcting a problem.
- Get direct feedback from customers.
To really know what customers want, direct reports and customer surveys are certainly helpful. Customer surveys can reveal what customer service techniques worked and what did not. This is important to know when you are trying to build loyal, long-lasting customer relationships. Remember, it is all about what the customer wants and needs, and how you can best accommodate them that will help to make your business stand out from the competition and keep your customers coming back.
- Offer employees recognition and rewards.
Employee recognition is a key motivator for customer service employees. Whether it is an employee-of-the-month bonus or an announcement during a team meeting, customer service employees should know they are valued and respected, just like their customers.
If you follow these customer service tips, they should help to help raise your customer loyalty and service performance. Remember, it is much easier to please and keep current customers than it is to get new ones and repeat business from happy customers can also lead to referral business as well.