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Improving the Customer Service Environment is a Few Simple Steps Away

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April 09, 2015

Improving the Customer Service Environment is a Few Simple Steps Away

By Steve Anderson, Contributing TMCnet Writer

It's well known that a great customer experience is one of the best ways to ensure that customers become repeat customers, which is the goal of most any organization. Long-term repeat customers can mean the difference between a thriving business and one about to go under, so understanding the value of customer experience can be vital. A good customer experience has a lot to do with good customer service, so TeamSupport's Robert Johnson offered up a report on just how to go about that.

Making better customer service, not surprisingly, starts with understanding the customer. It's hard to make a terrific customer service environment where customers only have one way to contact the business, spend a lot of time on hold, and then don't even get a satisfactory answer when the call finishes. Understanding by itself is never enough, though; once the customers' needs are understood, it's time to get together with the customer service team and figure out just how to address the points raised in the understanding of the customer.

There are, however, some common ways to address these issues, even as there are specific ways that can only be found through collaboration with the customer service reps on the ground. Self-service options are a great way to do this, as the ability to answer customer service-related questions without going through a customer service department is becoming increasingly prized. Also, take a look at the metrics established in the system; looking for things like average call length, average hold time, and things like that can reveal some very critical universal points to address.

Finally, make customer service more of a customer-based proposition. The omni-channel approach, as it's often called, can be a great response to this, allowing customers to get in touch with a business the way said customer most prefers. Thus allowing customers to actually use the tools that customers want to use can be a great way to make a better customer service environment.

This is actually a rather straightforward proposition. Some of the advice here is fairly universal; an omni-channel approach to customer service, for example, is generally desired by many customers who want to be able to reach a business by social media or text message or Web chat instead of just making a phone call. Self-service options are rapidly becoming the norm in customer service environments, with customers who use these often feeling better about the experience afterward, so offering up that quick shot of success as a customer fixes his or her own problem can go farther than some might think. Meanwhile, collaborating with customer service representatives to both find and fix problems helps improve employee engagement as well, a move that often yields a better overall customer service environment thanks to a greater degree of caring from engaged employees.

The steps related here should go quite a way in terms of establishing that great new customer service environment, so it's certainly a great place to start looking for ways to improve the experience for those involved. Given the focus on collaboration and observation, though, even if it doesn't work immediately, it's likely to show just why it isn't.

Edited by Maurice Nagle

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