Editor’s Note: Today’s blog post comes from Katrina Domkowski, manager of Call Center Operations here at Solid Cactus. Katrina’s team handles customer service calls for hundreds of businesses who outsource their customer service and administrative duties to our highly skilled, and very friendly, CSRs in our Pennsylvania office. If you’re considering outsourcing or just need a little extra help during the busy periods, Katrina and her team are ready to help. Just call 1.888.361.9814 for more information on Call Center Services from Solid Cactus.
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Customers crave a consistent experience, though that is quickly becoming the differentiator as opposed to the norm. In the early stages of business, generally the business owner is responsible for all aspects of the business, including customer service and managing customer interactions. As a small business inevitably grows, a business owner will need to enlist help to continue to manage the business and customer interactions. Help can come in many forms – from hiring an employee, to outsourcing the work to a team of people. When enlisting help – it’s important to encourage consistency across all customer service interactions.
Regardless of the size of the business – to ensure a consistent customer service experience and interaction, a business owner should create policies and processes to be followed. The policies and processes, when thoroughly documented, allows the business owner to hand customer service over to a third party, be it an employee or an outsourcer, all while knowing exactly how each customer interaction is going to be handled.
Most businesses will want a process for, at least, the following situations:
- Order Status
- When your customer inquires about the delivery of their order – how should a customer service agent handle it?
- Returns or Exchanges
- If a customer wants to return or exchange a product, will the customer service agents first attempt retention, or will an RMA number automatically be given without a second thought of the value prop of the item to the customer?
- Received Damaged
- When items are received damaged by your customers – should photos be sent of the damage in case a claim is needed? Does the customer just report the damage and wait?
- Request for discounts/price match
- If a potential customer wants a discount or a price match to your competitor’s site – what is the process a customer service agent would follow?
In the above example – a customer calls in to request a return of their order. Without a policy or process in place – Sally Sue may assist the customer by providing a RA number and return instructions, while Billy Bob may try to first try a retention tactic to save the sale; this is an inconsistent customer experience. By creating a basic guide for how each situation should be handled – a business owner is ensuring the same positive customer experience, regardless of who assists the customer.