When it comes to running a successful business, nothing is more important than ensuring the satisfaction of your customers. As the nucleus for customer service, your company’s call center should be one of the most fine-tuned, expertly-operated branches of your business. Explore the advice from the following five customer service professionals to build stronger company-client relationships and improve the way you do customer service.
1. Achieve Excellence With Excellence
The best way to establish an top-notch call center is to hire a team of staff members who share your company’s
vision and passion for quality customer service. Finbarr O’Neill, president of J.D. Power, says that one of the most admirable traits of excellent employees is empathy. He notes that empathy isn’t an attribute which can necessarily be taught, and so hiring employees with the natural ability to empathize with customers is key.
Additionally, when hiring your staff, be sure to consider experience. While you don’t want a candidate with zero experience, you also don’t want someone who is overqualified for the job. Instead, opt for the candidates with a great track record of providing quality service – not only will these individuals excel in customer service, but they will also be the best voice for your company.
2. Train to Exceed Expectations
Train your team to exceed customer expectations, and your company will attract loyal, lifetime clients. O’Neill backs this point, saying, “There is a strong financial reward in delighting people,” and by training your customer service agents to be “able to anticipate what frustrates customers and ensure that the seeds of aggravation don’t get watered,” any potential problems, concerns, or complaints will be prepared for and prevented.
3. Preemptive Support Leads to Success
Companies with excellent customer service offer unparalleled service along with reliable, preemptive support. Take the luxury automotive company Lexus, for example. After buying a new Lexus, each customer is given a technology tutorial. This simple strategy achieves two critical goals:
- It increases customer satisfaction and builds company credibility and reliability.
- It decreases the chances that the customer will call in and complain about their frustration in not being able to operate the car’s technology.
Ensure that each of your products and services is backed with a detailed demo, pamphlet, or tutorial so that your customers have a comprehensive understanding of their purchase. Going the extra mile to provide preemptive support will have a lasting effect on clients and will help you better improve your bottom line.
4. Know the Power of a Personal Touch
Experts across the board agree that one of the best ways to improve your call center is to make each customer feel valued and appreciated with a personal touch. Not only does offering personalized information build stronger customer relationships, but it is also proven to have the strongest impact on customer ratings of service quality. AvMed CEO Michael Gallagher explains that by assigning a personal service representative to every member of their non-profit health insurance company, they were able to reduce the frustrations of having to repeatedly explain their situation every time callers were transferred to a new representative.
Even if you don’t have the budget to assign a personal service rep to each of your customers, you can utilize your call center’s software to display comprehensive information about each client. By being able to see important personalized information like the customer’s name, title, tickets, events, cases, call logs, chat transcripts, etc., every agent can quickly access the entire history of the caller to better provide quality, personalized service.
5. Listen & Act On Feedback
Customer service professionals don’t just listen to the suggestions or complaints of customers – they act on them. For example, customer service agents at Bangor Savings Bank were receiving significant feedback about the fees that were charged when accessing ATMs. The bank made a point of acting on this feedback by eliminating the fees; they also went the extra mile by reimbursing clients when another bank charged them a fee. CEO Jim Conlon highlighted that the bank’s empathy and proactive response to this feedback were much more valuable and beneficial in the long run that the dollars and cents of minor ATM fees.
Instead of disregarding customer feedback because you think it might be too costly or time consuming, think of ways you can use the feedback to be most impactful your customers. Chances are the ROI will be huge.