Bringing customer service strategy to life
We’re currently part way through National Customer Service Week (1-7 October), which acts as a focus for the importance of customer service to UK businesses. Led by the Institute of Customer Service, each day during the week has a separate theme - from Bringing your Strategy to Life to Improving Processes and The Future.
The sheer breadth of subjects covered and the enormous number of organisations involved demonstrates how central excellent customer service is to successful businesses. This is a theme that we’ve covered in detail on this blog, and Eptica is a strong supporter of the aims and activities within the week. We believe it makes a real difference to customer service in the UK.
Given the importance of customer service year round, we’ve put together three key areas for companies to focus on to ensure that the benefits of excellent service are felt all the time.
1 Continually collect feedback
Contact centres provide a huge amount of information and metrics, from First Contact Resolution rates and call wait times to more complex customer satisfaction surveys. Make sure that you are regularly surveying not just your customers, but also talking to your agents and providing them with the ability to give their feedback, either through focus groups, surveys or simply via email or chats.
2 Value staff enthusiasm
Staff are your biggest asset, so make sure they know this and feel valued and part of the team. As mentioned make it easy for them to give feedback, but go beyond this. If you are installing new systems ensure they are involved from the very beginning and get their buy-in early. A great example of this is Eptica customer Domestic & General, which branded its new knowledge management system Fido following a suggestion from one of its 1,050 agents. The more involved in the project staff feel, the greater the adoption of the finished system, ensuring it delivers the benefits it promised.
3 Provide omnichannel service
Customers want to contact you through a growing number of different channels – from social media and mobile to email and the web. Make sure that you provide them with the channels they want, but in a consistent manner – sharing information across different channels to avoid expensive silo-based working. Talk to your customers and survey the devices they use to contact you and plan ahead to launch new services (such as mobile apps) if needed.
National Customer Service Week is a wonderful focus for the customer service industry in the UK. However as companies know the key thing is to keep standards consistently high, all year round.