Whenever you set out to create a customer support team, or simply extend the team you have right now, there is no one-size-fits-all approach or solution. Since every company has its own unique pain points, goals, and needs, you need to have a plan in terms of how you will go about assembling your team. Whether you are setting up your department from scratch or you already have one in place we will tell you how to structure it to succeed.
1. What Does Great Customer Service Mean to You?
Pretty much any company you ask will tell you that they provide great customer service, but the definition of what “great service” is will vary from one business to another. Think about your company values. This can be something like integrity, honesty, trust, and any other quality and apply it to your customer service. In fact, Atlassian, the creator of popular services like JIRA and Confluence have “Don’t #@!% the customer” as one of their values. Keep in mind, that your team can only offer clients service as good as your company allows.
2. Exceed Your Customer Expectations
Exceeding the expectations of your customers is a sure-fire method of distinguishing yourself from the competition. The most important things that your clients are looking for are empathy, fairness, and transparency. Such qualities are very difficult to measure, but they are very important in building a relationship with your customers. If you are looking for more quantifiable expectations, consider things like the wait times. For phone calls this is around 20 seconds and emails should be answered within 1 hour.
3. Decide on the Channel You Will Support
We touched on this a little bit earlier, but it is very tempting for companies to tell their customers that they will be there for them 24/7, however, covering all of the time zones and channels can be very difficult. To solve this problem, look into the primary method your customers are using to get in touch with you. If they are mainly calling you then focus on providing support over the phone, if they prefer online chats then you should be geared towards this channel. This will be the best strategy for you, at least in the early stages.
If you are looking to extend the support you offer but would like to do so on a budget, consider outsourcing such tasks to a service provider. This can be beneficial given the impact of the COVID-19 virus on customer service teams. Companies currently cannot be fully operational in terms of their customer support and have to stagger their teams to avoid people coming into the office. This is affecting even large companies like Wells Fargo, who have only 38% of their 9,000 customer service agents working. When you choose to outsource your customer support, you are shifting all of the operational aspects over to the service provider and they will be responsible for hiring, renting an office, and other overhead costs. Furthermore, you will have complete control over the size of your team and will be able to scale up or down as needed.
4. Hiring the Right People
Having the right people is at the core of providing great customer service. After all, they are the ones who will be on the front lines helping customers so they should have the right personality and skill set necessary to provide the best service. While there are certain things that you will be able to teach, such as using the CRM and other tools, soft skills will be much more difficult and time-consuming to develop. If you are starting your team from scratch, you should take a couple of weeks to teach them about how you approach customer service and how it aligns with your values.
At Mindy Support, we have a comprehensive onboarding program aimed at helping newcomers come in and hit the ground running right away. This includes an efficient and client-oriented onboarding program and includes corporate culture immersion and mentorship. We also offer a set of basic training programs depending on service type in addition to our customized and easy to use corporate e-learning platform.
5. Choose Your Tools
Even if you hire outstanding people, they will still need to have the tools necessary to provide great service. This includes the CRM and the knowledge base since your team will be accessing these tools more often than others. It is important that they are user friendly and that you provide some training on how to use them. If you outsource your customer support, some service providers will have an R&D center that can customize the tools for more convenient usage. While the out-of-the-box tools can have a lot of functionalities, they still need to be customized for individual workflows.
Mindy Support Can Help You Build Customer Relationships
We are living in the experience economy and your customers are looking for service that is customized to their needs. Mindy Support can help you provide better service and build relationships with your customers by assembling a team of qualified customer support representatives. We have helped businesses of all sizes including some of the GAFAM and Fortune 500 companies assemble the team they needed to help them reach their business goals. We also work with small businesses and startups. All you have to do is give us the criteria you are looking for in every customer service agent and we will go out there and find them.
Posted by Il’ya Dudkin