Customer Service in the Information Age
Every aspect of a business must be designed to optimize company value. In one way or another, every process affects revenue and profit. Unfortunately, one of the biggest mistakes companies make is failing to update their processes as better solutions become available. They become complacent with traditional methods and lack the initiative to introduce changes that will benefit the company in the long-term.
One area in particular that many businesses struggle with is customer service. With the majority of any given business’s customers online and a healthy portion of them sharing their purchasing experiences, it is a huge mistake to ignore this CRM opportunity. Customer service should not be handled how it used to be because customers are not interacting with companies like they used to be. Failure to optimize your customer service department and contact center will have negative implications for brand reputation as well as customer acquisition and retention.
Technology now gives companies the ability to track just about anything they want. Companies have the ability to optimize their contact centers by gathering and analyzing data on customer calls. Knowing the most profitable time to call certain customers and enhancing the customer service team’s communications will directly impact customer satisfaction and revenue generation. It is careless to ignore the powerful data that can be obtained through a customer contact and workforce optimization solutions provider. This provider will be able to evaluate a company’s processes and strategically implement effective changes.
To improve customer service, certain things must be done right. A company’s employees must be thoroughly prepared and equipped to do their jobs effectively. Their subsequent performance must be monitored, evaluated and improved. It is essential to have the technology to understand which employees are performing at a high or low level and the reason why. Providing a uniform and quality customer experience does not happen by chance. Efforts must be made to give contact centers the resources needed to perform at a high level and contribute to an increase in revenue and customer satisfaction. What’s more, there are many integrated solutions that will work with, and around, the software you’re probably already using.
Workforce optimization will pay for itself when implemented by professionals. Its results are undeniable and will boost not only revenue, but brand value. Nonetheless, it all comes down to the bottom line. Money is lost when inefficient employees are paid to work and make and answer calls at statistically unprofitable times. With the right data, a company can make well-informed decisions that result in a positive return.
A final consideration is CRM through social media and internet. A system must be in place so that customer service representatives are communicating with customers in a manner consistent with company strategy and are responding in a timely fashion. For Facebook, the appropriate response time is likely a day or two. On Twitter, this means responding within hours. This sort of brand interaction has the potential to create loyal customers for life.
It comes down to this: a customer service department comprised of a summer intern will not cut it. Even a fully staffed customer service department will not be enough if not managed effectively and given the tools needed to succeed. Resources must be assigned to this area to ensure a quality customer experience. The incredible return you see on this investment will undoubtedly justify your resources spent.