Wikipedia will tell you customer service “is the provision of service to customers before, during and after a purchase." According to Turban et al. (2002), "Customer service is a series of activities designed to enhance the level of customer satisfaction – that is, the feeling that a product or service has met the customer expectation." It can be an over-used phrase which often lacks substance.
Two concepts always strike me as key to customer satisfaction: timeliness and anticipation.
Customers generally ask a question that they need an immediate answer to. Take your time developing a response that is helpful and complete, but respond in a reasonable amount of time. This may mean setting expectation levels and re-prioritizing your other commitments. It’s also important to spend the right amount of time preparing a response that is knowledgeable and complete. Use your professional expertise and advise your customers the best way you possibly can. You may not always have the answer, but don’t wait too long before responding even if it is to say ‘I don’t know, but I will find out’.
At LOGiQ3 we are client driven; it’s one of our maxims. The services we provide to both internal and external customers are our focus, and while we strive to accommodate their needs as thoroughly and professionally as possible, we also challenge ourselves to anticipate what might come next. Put yourself in the customer's position and consider what response would satisfy your needs; then provide as many of the details as possible to avoid follow up questions.
This is the best time saver for both parties.
Customers know their immediate needs, but they don’t always know what they will need a day, week or month from now. The best service is one that can satisfy both the immediate and the unforeseen. The world is moving at an incredibly fast pace, and we often answer questions without the appropriate thought. Don’t let yourself do that, you do yourself and your customers a disservice. Slow down, listen, and provide a solution that speaks to your commitment to your customer.
When addressing your customer’s needs keep these ideas mind.
2. Be timely
3. Don’t say ‘yes’ if the answer is really ‘no’
4. Confirm customer satisfaction
5. Customer is first, but know your limitations
6. Anticipate the next question
7. Acknowledge errors
What other things do you keep in mind when serving your customers? Better yet, as a customer, what do you expect from your service provider? Please share with us by commenting below.
Thanks for reading,
Kathleen Kelly, Manager at LOGiQ3 can be reached here.