Customer Service Training
- Bespoke customer service course
- Delivered at your company premises anywhere in UK
- See full course outline
Research shows that if we receive good customer service, we’ll tell two or three people. Word of mouth recommendations and referrals are often key drivers of new business. But – if we get poor service, we’ll tell ten to twelve others!
With that in mind, here are 16 practical tips on how to improve customer service in your company:
- Send staff out as ‘mystery shoppers’ to your competitors
Let them see for themselves what others are doing. Get them to share their experience and see what best practice you can adopt and what ideas you can steal. For more information see introduction to mystery shopping.
- Seek and analyse customer feedback
Don’t make assumptions; look for ways to find out what your customers think about the organisation. Be radical – invite them in to help you identify what you could be doing better.
- Track and analyse errors and complaints
Get to the root cause to find out what’s going wrong and why. Involve people in improving processes to prevent recurrences. Undertake remedial training and coaching.
See tips on handling customer complaints for further help.
- Go ‘back to the floor’
Shadow people in the organisation. See how your systems and processes affect the customer, and see what obstacles get in the way of good customer service.
- Build your processes around the customer, not the organisation
Look for ways of streamlining end to end processes and reducing ‘handoffs’ to reduce errors.
- Set and communicate clear standards
in terms of quality, accuracy, behaviour, appearance and good customer service. Staff need to know what you expect from them. Ensure that the service is consistently good, in every location, from everyone, every day.
- Capture and share examples of really great service in your organisation
This gives recognition to the individual who delivered it, and it also helps others to learn techniques and to build confidence.
- Consider setting up customer service awards
Use an award scheme where individuals, colleagues and customers can nominate.
- Treat staff as you treat your customers
Behaviour breeds behaviour and happy staff lead to happy customers. We’ve probably all experienced staff who look and sound completely fed up, and they’re the worst ambassadors. Motivate and retain good staff, because turnover is expensive, both in recruitment and training costs, as well as in respect of lost experience. Employees want to feel valued, so think about ways to give them positive feedback, especially when they demonstrate great customer service. Build a sense of pride in your organisation.
- Pay attention to those who don’t serve customers directly
The chances are that if they’re not serving a customer, they’re serving someone who is, and these people are their ‘internal’ customers.
- Build a team culture
Emphasise that everyone is a link in the chain and that everything they do should be focused on delighting the customer.
See our tips on building high performance teams.
- Set measurable objectives around improved customer service
Be sure to cascade them across the organisation.
- Review individual performance regularly
Undertake performance reviews not just during the annual appraisal. Give feedback about what’s going well, as well as coaching for areas needing development.
- Have regular customer service sessions with cross sections of staff
They are at the sharp end, and they’ll have lots of ideas on how things could be improved. Encourage them to think of what can be done to provide the ‘wow factor’ – use the creativity of the group to brainstorm and think outside the box for less obvious suggestions.
See our tips on developing your creativity and facilitating groups.
- Recruit the right people
Use effective selection techniques, and invest in staff training. To the customer, whoever they’re dealing with IS your company. Are you measuring the right behaviours and attitudes that achieve high levels of customer service within your selection process?
- Invest in customer service training
Choose a provider who will really get to know your business and who can support your business strategy and service standards. Develop your own short internal customer service training sessions to raise the importance and get your employees really involved.
customer service training ideas provides useful guidance on this.
Let great service be the norm in your organisation by applying the customer service tips and techniques above!
At KSL Training we adopt a holistic approach to customer service, helping you to achieve your business strategy and customer service standards. Our 1 day customer service training course will teach you how to improve customer service at every level of your organisation or contact us to discuss a tailored customer service training programme.
- Developing a Customer Service Training Programme
- Customer Service Training Ideas
- Introduction to Mystery Shopping
- Handling Customer Complaints
- Dealing with Difficult Behaviour
- High Performance Teams Guide
- Tips For Facilitating Groups
You may also be interested in our other free resources:
- Tips For Chairing Meetings
- Time Management Tips
- Performance Appraisal Methods
- Staff Induction Checklist
Our thanks to Ann Palmer for preparing this informative article on how to improve customer service.