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The customer service balancing act

15 Aug 11

One in five New Zealand consumers had a negative experience with their telco provider in the past year, with phone companies contributing one third of all bad customers service experiences, One News reported in January this year.

We’ve all waited in the telephone queue to work out a service or technical issue with a service provider. It can be endless, and it can certainly try your patience.

All of us in business also understand the importance of minimising operating costs, and the opportunity that technology offers us to do so. 

Offering personal customer service can be one of the most expensive costs to your business. At the other end of the scale, you can offer online customer support only.

Whatever way you do it, you can’t escape the fact that someone needs to be in touch with your customers and how they do it will cost you money, as well as reflecting on your reputation and whether or not that customer wants to come back. It’s a balancing act.

Sadly, according to a study by JRA, kiwis now expect to wait in a queue. Once they are in touch with someone, kiwis want you to:

1. Show a willingness to help them – only 43% of kiwis are satisfied.

2. Listen to them and understand what their needs are – 34% of kiwis think you listen to them.

3. Take responsibility to ensure their needs are met – only 30% of kiwis think you have met their needs.

There is a lot of room for improvement!

These expectations require your staff members to be completely engaged in their job. They need to be motivated and have the right attitude to deliver exceptional customer service. This is what will make your customers come back.

How do you do this?

You can put a lot of time, money, managerial consistency and internal processes in place to create and support a business culture where your staff want to genuinely offer a customer service experience that will be the highlight of their customer’s day. This is a long-term challenge, and one that is difficult to achieve if it is not reflected and driven from the top of the organisation. Anything less than a genuine effort may fall apart and appear fake. Once this happens your staff will not buy into the culture. This method requires highly motivated middle management staff and a process of continual improvement through monitoring, training and feedback.

Is there an easier way?

Yes, there is. You can monitor, measure, evaluate and coach your customer services team with a smart voice recording product. Call Catch Interact captures your staff’s customer service interactions by recording the phone calls and capturing the on-screen solutions offered to the customer. Then you are able to measure, evaluate and coach your customer services staff on their performance in real time. Recently, a well-known home improvement service company installed Call Catch and improved their customer service staff productivity and service levels by 20%.

If you would like to learn more about how to improve your customer services so that your staff are willing to help, listen to your customers’ needs, and take responsibility to find a solution, contact Cackle Telecommunications on 0508-222-553 or at

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