Your company is one of the leading reverse logistics companies in the city using cloud-based technology. You’ve worked with various market segments, including manufacturers, retailers, and distributors. Just nearly three years in operation, you’ve kept pace with the overall market trends. There is, however, a need to cope better with the demands of customers, particularly in providing post-sales customer service.
Following the executive leadership team’s meeting, the plan is to investigate setting up a full-blown customer service department. You are charged with the planning and implementation of this project. How does one do it, and what does one need to know?
The Customer Service Industry
While many companies set-up their customer service department overseas to save on cost, the industry is still generating around $12 billion in revenue as of May 2019 in America. The growth rate is steadily rising at 5.6%. Concentrix and Teleperformance are just two of the top customer care centers.
Some companies, however, are bringing back customer service in-house. Two of the main reasons for these are the unmet cost savings of outsourcing and the provider’s inability to meet service level agreements.
What You Need to Know
The goal here is to make customers happy by providing excellent customer service. Here are some focus areas:
- Defining excellence. What you claim on your marketing materials is different from what the customer is experiencing or has experienced. Gather your team, practice scenarios, and define what would an excellent experience of a customer would be based on those scenarios. You need to drill it down from how your customer representative sounds on the phone, the language used, and the ability to listen to the customer. Connect with customers using your company values. If “bending backward for customer satisfaction” is your internal slogan, make them feel this. There’s no policy on a $20 refund, but the customer is asking for one. Why not give it? The aggravation on either side is not worth $20.
- Set up the right tools for your team. Don’t scrimp on money by getting a system that’s going to create more problems for you. Spend the right amount of money by getting a robust system that will respond to your customer’s needs. You need to manage e-mails, chats, and phone calls. Make sure that you have the customer’s experience in mind.
- Train your team. As mentioned, practice as many scenarios as you can and come up with solutions that will delight your customers. Train your people to listen first to your customers rather than to be ready to spew standard spiels from a manual. More often, the usual spiels annoy more, than they appease people on the other end of the line.
- Product knowledge. Each member of your customer service team must be an expert on your products. They must be diligent and conscientious enough to memorize common complaints and to provide solutions.
A high level of friendliness and responsiveness are also crucial when building your customer service department. Make sure that these are critical components of the culture you want to establish.