Ideas For Companies In Relation To Customer Service
Customer service is one of those industries that are in all industries to a certain degree, though it is usually delegated to the lowest paid person in every industry. Good customer service can mean the difference between repeat business, and your company going under.
Good customer service is usually identified by how efficient the employee is at knowing what the customer wants, and in knowing how to get that to him. Or, if the employee can’t get that particular item for the customer, they need to know and have training on how to assuage the customer’s disappointment. This is usually completed by offering free items of some type that doesn’t much hurt the company to make, like rain checks, putting items on layaway, or, in the case of food service, extras that don’t cost the company much money but can seem like a boon to the sometimes-disgruntled customer.
Customer service agents should be paid more, as dealing with the general public is usually draining and bewildering to most employees that are in this line of work for very long. Sometimes customers just don’t know exactly what they want, and it’s up to the agent to figure out what that is, often with very vague and incomplete information. Excellent customer service agents are often able to think quickly on their feet, all while being pleasant and personable in the process. This often equates to emotional labor on the part of the employee that is largely uncompensated in their oftentimes lower pay than the people that are in the office.
This low pay is largely responsible for customer service representatives starting out excellent, but then over time getting burned out, need to be rotated out, or quitting. This is unfortunate, as even the most personable and extroverted people quit because of the abuse that they can sometimes get from the general public. It would do companies some good to take notice of this high turnover rate in customer service jobs and implement training and also rotating the people around in other types of jobs in the industry so that they don’t get burned out on dealing with the general public all day. Very few industries seem to want to put this in place, though, so now you have a customer service culture which is subpar because we just don’t want to take care of our employees.
Taking care of one’s employees might mean more overhead in the short term, but it has big interpersonal gains in the long term. If companies would worry more about taking care of the human element of their companies instead of just being as much in the black as possible, then we might see a shift in the customer service in the common industries, if not in the other, more white-collar industries.