Will customer expectations be met if you outsource customer service?

Monday, November 25, 2013

Giving fast and laudable service that satisfies customers is a major problem for some companies, so they outsource customer service. But how can they be sure that their outsourcing provider will handle their customers well and meet expectations?

Customer service is important as businesses see it as their branding. The ball is now to the outsourcing firm. It's their responsibility to show their potential clients that their customer service representatives are more than capable of delivering exemplary customer service.

On the customer service rep's end

A customer service representative must change his mindset the moment he takes calls. That's a rule. But that should not end at that. Customers always set the bar higher, so the agent must keep it "even higher."

For every call, he must always expect a customer to be unappeasable, somebody who would not stop bawling over a service or product that does not work according to how he wants it to.

If you're the customer support representative, how would you be able to do this?
  • Treat your customer as a close relative or your best friend. 

    It's kind of absurd, but this is a good way to bridge the distance that's always present between a customer service representative (CSR) and the caller. Yes, all call center transactions begin in nil connection—and it's up to the agent to fill that gap.

    It's a little mind game, though, it could offer good results. Now: if on the other line is your best friend, you would help him out the best way you can, wouldn't you? Or imagine it's your mother who is sniveling over a poor Wi-Fi connection; would you dare to hang up without solving her problem? You would probably answer a fat "no."
  • Embrace the problem as though it's yours

    Have you experienced being tossed by a customer care representative to another agent just because you're calling about a concern that's not his expertise, or he's simple unable to answer your questions? Pretty annoying, right?

    Embracing the customers' dilemma starts with empathy. Be in their shoes, and make them feel that you're one with them in their predicaments. This way, the customer would feel that you really understand them the way they want you to understand them. For instance, the customer is calling for a wrongly billed transaction, and this error, if not fixed, would cost him his month's salary. Now, would you like the same thing to happen to you?

    Then, own his problem. Don't let the call end without resolving the problem. In the case of the wrongly billed transaction, you take responsibility for calling your billing department, fixing his account records, and rebating what has been due to the customer. Like a dear friend, stay with him until the very last minute of your shift.

    If possible, calling the customer for follow-up is a good move to win customer satisfaction and even reputation. A simple gesture of inquiring over the effectiveness of the solution you gave, or simply asking if there are another fixing to be done on top of the earlier problem is a good kick to the brand you are handling.
  • Be real, don't be a robot

    The world is no longer alien to how most call representatives do their job. We all know that there's a script, there's a predefined line of questioning, and there are several questions that sometimes raise even more questions than answers. Customers hate it when they expect a real person to answer the query, but end up hearing a machine. They want somebody who will not give them straight-from-the-script solutions; what they want is someone who gives straightforward answers that lead to effectual result.
  • Consult your team, exchange experiences

    At the end of the day, the call center job is still a team effort. You're working in a team that aims to help a brand with their customer service. Hence, it can be nice to exchange call experiences with your workmates; their experiences could give you ideas on how you will handle calls similar to theirs. Or you can talk to your team leader, your manager, or direct supervisor; they aren't in their respective positions for no reason at all—they know what to do, they have the vast experience.
  • Don't overdo things, just do your job happily

    Sometimes people tend to lose track the moment they overly think of what they have to do or how they should do things the right way. Just be yourself, just focus on your goal, and treat every call a happy learning experience. Perhaps, in this way the tension and pressure would go away naturally, and you'll end up meeting and exceeding the customer's satisfaction without you knowing it—an effortless victory.
Open Access BPO's top priority is to provide unique outsourcing solutions that are built on unparalleled customer service. Learn more about us and our outsourcing solutions by visiting our website or by joining us on Google+.