You can't underestimate the value of an effective call center.
A call center that is staffed by professional and high-performing customer service personnel will inevitably lead to increases in customer loyalty and the overall profitability of your business.
But what happens when your customer service department isn't meeting your expectations? Poorly performing call centers will drain your customer base and deflate your entire workplace. That much is obvious. But what you may not realize is that when your customer service team isn't up to snuff, the blame rests solely on your shoulders.
Owners and managers have a responsibility for making sure their customer service team is equipped with the skills they need to thrive in a busy call center environment. When your call center needs a boost, here's how to improve customer service skills.
- Emphasize demeanor. Dysfunctional customer service departments are full of workers who haven't been trained to handle themselves professionally. Before you do any other training, establish a professional conduct policy and let your workers know that lackadaisical attitudes won't be tolerated.
- Target problem solving. Many ineffective call center employees lack adequate problem solving skills. Clearly communicate operational parameters and then give your team the problem solving skills they need to efficiently resolve customer complaints.
- Offer solutions. Customers should never feel as though they are out of no options. It's important to make sure your customer service department understands the options that are available for a range of customer service complaints and has the ability to communicate those options to your customers.
- Conduct follow-up. Some customer service issues cannot be resolved immediately. Your staff has to be capable of estimating response times, gathering contact information and successfully executing follow-up routines,
- Standardization. Smaller customer service departments sometimes suffer from inadequate standardization. In a call center environment, standardized processes are extremely helpful to employees – provided they aren't so rigid that they stifle innovation or deter workers from exercising appropriate levels of flexibility.