Presentation on theme: "Customer Service Skills"— Presentation transcript:
1Customer Service Skills This is the final presentation
2Why Bother?Why put out extra effort to provide superior service if average service is enough to keep the contract and your job?You owe it to the Customer!You owe it to your employer!You owe it to yourself!
3Only One Boss There is only one boss – the Customer. “The Customer can fire anybody in the company from the chairman on down, simply by spending his money somewhere else.”Sam Walton
4Who’s Paying You?“It’s not the employer who pays the wages. Employers only handle the money. It’s the Customer who pays the wages.”Henry Ford
5Why Us?Technical support is a commodity, nothing more. What distinguishes one provider from another is the quality of their Customer Service.Never forget that the customer has a choice as to who they pay to provide this service.
6Who Is Your Customer?The Franklin High School helpdesk will provide service to students and staff .If working at Apple, your customers would include Apple customers, Apple Management, End User Support Service Providers, and other Agents.
7What is a Customer?The Customer is the most important person, whether in person, by mail, or by telephone.A Customer is not someone to argue or match wits with under any circumstances. Nobody ever won an argument with a Customer.Customers deserve the most courteous attention we can provide. A Customer is the lifeblood of this and every business. Without Customers, we would have to close our doors.
8Make Your Customer Feel Welcome Great Customer Service starts with the first few seconds of the call. You only have one chance for a good “first impression”.No matter what happened just before taking a new call, make sure you start fresh with each new contact with a positive mental attitude.If the Customer was on hold for awhile, apologize for the wait.
9Business and PleasureMost people prefer dealing with others who seem to be enjoying themselves. So, let that cheerful sense of humor of yours come out.Just make sure you temper it with good judgement and common sense.
10Take Your Cue From the Customer You will come across a few Customers who just want to take care of business and then hang up. For them, a good relationship with you means quick, efficient, get-down-to-business service.So, that’s what you need to give them….along with a cheerful attitude.
11CompartmentalizeInsulate one customer interaction from the next. Think of how professional golfers must discipline themselves to forget the last shot and focus only on the next one.Don’t allow one negative encounter spill over into the next Customer contact… or the rest of your day.
12Use Those Active Listening Skills Make comments to acknowledge your understanding of your customer’s position.Empathize with their problems and issues.Convey your customer’s concerns to management when appropriate, and let your customer know you will.
13Regardless of who the Customer is, they deserve your very best. Every Customer Deserves Your Very BestGive every Customer your very best! You never know who you might be helping. It could be a close friend of the president of the company, or it could be someone testing the service.Regardless of who the Customer is, they deserve your very best.
14Adopt a Can Do AttitudeNever tell a Customer that you can’t do something, unless you immediately follow with a description of what you CAN do for them.Customer Service is about doing, not explaining or rationalizing what your NOT doing.
15Eliminate the Negatives Make a conscious effort to minimize the use of negative words and phrases in your service interactions.Customers do not like words such as: can’t, won’t, don’t, not, no, or sorry.You should look for every opportunity to say words such as: can, will, do, yes, you bet, and absolutely.
16Talk Less… Listen MoreListen to everything the Customer says as if there is going to be a test at the end of the conversation.Make it your goal to understand the Customer’s needs and expectations.Repeat the points the Customer made in your own words and confirm your understanding.
17Tech-SpeakBe careful not to use technical jargon that the Customer doesn’t understand.Acronyms that are used commonly in the technical arena are foreign words to most of our Customers. By using technical terminology you may confuse, intimidate or anger the Customer.
18Under-Promise and Over-Deliver Keep your promises reasonable, but make what you provide to the Customer extraordinary.Set realistic expectations for the Customer. Remember, you are depending on others to deliver part of the service, under conditions you cannot control or may not be totally aware of.
19Honor Your Commitments Do what you say you’ll do.Customers occasionally make plans, schedule meetings, or make decisions based on what you tell them you’ll do.Whether you promise something explicitly or implicitly, make sure that you follow through.
20What’s the Rush?Give the Customer the benefit of your full attention while they are speaking to you. By worrying about pending calls you may become distracted and leave the Customer with the feeling that you’re not totally concerned with their needs.The Customer should feel that they’ve had ample time to get their issues resolved to completion and not rushed through. A Customer who feels rushed is not going to feel as though they received top notch service.
21Listen for Unspoken Requests A Customer may not be able to fully articulate a need or concern, or may brush one off for another.An issue mentioned casually as a peripheral concern may be important and if you resolve it for the Customer they will feel like you’ve taken that extra step.
22Summarize As You GoAs you approach the end of each Customer interaction, do a short recap of what you discussed, what you are going to do for them, what they can expect, and when.
23Satisfaction Plus OneWhenever you get to the point where you feel the Customer is satisfied, look for one more thing you can do for them.It can be something you do for them, something you send them, something you say to them, or whatever. It doesn’t have to be big… even little extras can turn a satisfied Customer into a delighted one.
24Thank You !!!Be sure to invite the customer to call again. Let them know that their calls are welcomed. Close your calls with something like:“Please call back any time we can be of service.”“Feel free to call us anytime.”Always and without fail, Thank the Customer for calling. Remember, it’s the customer who is paying your salary.
26Respect Your Customer’s Time Respect your customer’s time. Never, ever make them wait for anything without offering an explanation, an apology, and an alternative to waiting.
27Be PreparedMake sure you have all your tools that you will need available before you answer the phone.Don’t answer the phone and have to ask the Customer to wait for you to get ready.
28When Research is Required If you need extra time to resolve an issue, make an agreement with the Customer to call them back while you work on it. Make the necessary calls and do the research that you are able to do.
29Follow UpIf you must rely on the feedback of someone else, keep the ticket open and begin taking other calls while you wait. Set a reminder for an appropriate time frame to follow up on the open ticket. Even if there is no resolution to report to the Customer, call them back the same day and let them know your progress.
30Time Management TipsType important points of your conversation into the call text as you are speaking with the Customer.Fill in the details of your ticket during the “lulls” in the conversation.Never allow the Customer to get the impression you are giving less than 100% attention to them.If you complete your typing before hanging up, you won’t have to be in AUX as long and you can increase your call volume statistics.
32Greeting IT Support, this is <name>, how may I help you? Cheerful, but not sappyThe expression on your face can be heard through the sound of your voicePut on your “phone personality”Make sure you speak in clear English throughout the callSet the pace of the call by asking questions
33Use the Customer’s Name Use the customer’s name throughout the conversation. Generally, you should use “Ms.” or “Mr.” unless you sense that using the Customer’s first name is appropriate.People like to have their names pronounced correctly. Ask the Customer for the correct pronunciation at the outset of the call.
34Assess Your Customer’s Urgency What is your customer’s availability?What is your customer’s timeframe?What is your customer’s mood?
35Hold time… Ask the caller’s permission (and wait until you get it). Give them the option of holding or receiving a call back.Check back with the caller periodically to make sure they can continue holding.Use polite terms, such as “May I put you on hold”, Are you able to hold”, etc.Set the customer’s expectation regarding how long the hold may be and what the results should be.
36Warm Transfer/Cold Transfer Warm transfer includes staying on the line until you have introduced your customer to the third party on the line. You may also be required to provide a ticket number.Cold transfer allows you to immediately transfer the customer into the queue.
37Transfers Ask the caller’s permission (and wait until you get it). Explain the reason for the transfer.Tell the customer what to expect.Make sure you know if the process calls for a warm transfer.The additional effort won’t go unrecognized or unappreciated.
38Closing the Call Allow the Customer to hang up first. This is a simple courtesy, and it gives the Customer a chance to add something they may have overlooked.
40You Are a Guest Maintain professionalism off the phone, as well. Keep work area neatKeep conversations with co-workers cleanDress appropriately at a job siteRemember, you are a guest in your employer’s house
41Jokes and HumorHumor can offend when you don’t expect it. Avoid topics likeRaceReligionNationalityPoliticsAnything in generally poor tasteHumor can be an effective tool, and can simply provide enjoyment to you and the customer. Keep it clean, and it works.
42Personal Topics on Business Calls OK to make small talk – hobbies and interests, plans for weekend – while waiting for a task to be completed.Let the caller run that part of the call.Avoid items that might degrade confidence in you.Avoid sensitive topics
43Sensitive Information Sharing sensitive information can bring trouble….Insider trading?Damage company’s reputation?Damage another customer or agent’s reputation?
44Dirty LaundryCustomers don’t need to know about our call center’s problemsDegrades our image and credibilityCustomers prefer a positive attitude, anyway.
45Don’t Assign Blame …on the process …on your service provider …on your tools…on other agents…on the customer(for calling you instead of the “correct” serviceprovider)
46If You Make a Mistake… Admit it Apologize for it Fix it Move on Customer’s don’t really expect you to be perfect. They do, however, expect you to be honest.
48Customer Categories Customer Type Irate Insistent Hesitant Satisfied Action RequiredValidationActionReassuranceQuery for Satisfaction
49When dealing with an Irate customer, it is important to remember that they are upset with a situation they feel they cannot control… they are not upset with you.
50The Irate customerThe irate customer is fuming, they need to vent their frustration. Your role is to let them vent, and validate what they say, through active listening. Once they have calmed down, they become an insistent customer
51The Insistent Customer The insistent customer wants results, and they want them now! You should respond by moving into active resolution. All the focus should be on solving the problem. Once you propose acceptable solutions to the client, they will probably become a Hesitant customer.
52The Hesitant CustomerYou can recognize the Hesitant customer by the questions they ask concerning possible solutions. Your role with a Hesitant customer is to reassure. An effective technique to overcome resistance is to ask them questions that require a positive response. Once reassured, the client then moves to the final type…
53The Satisfied Customer The satisfied customer is very easy to work with. They are cooperative and appreciative. To ensure complete satisfaction, you should always end the call by asking if there is anything else you can help them with. (A Query for Satisfaction)
54What To Do Let the caller vent – validate what they tell you. Once the caller moves from Irate to Insistent, jump to action; get out of validation mode.Ask the caller leading questions that will solicit a “Yes” response.Always try to end the call with a query for satisfaction (“Is there anything else I can help you with today?”), but don’t push if the caller is resistant.
55If you watch for the transition from one type to another, and respond with the appropriate action, it is very easy to move an Irate customer to Satisfaction. Why? Because you helped them to gain control of the situation they felt was unmanageable at the start of the call.
57Don’t Know the Answer?Recognize the fact that we have a lot of information to learn and know here at the Call Center, and a single agent simply can’t know everything.Some of our most successful agents don’t have all the answers.What they have (and you may not) is a set of customer service “tools” that they pull out so that they appear both confident and competent when they don’t know.
58Rebuild Your Value to the Customer Instead of being the agent who:knows everything about their technical issuecan fix any problemTransform yourself into someone whowill get their problem fixedwill find the best possible ownerwill make certain to work with the customer until resolution is achieved....become the Champion of their Cause!
59Help your customer find a workaround Even the most ludicrous suggestion can help your customer in an emergency.No ?Try web access? A co-worker? A personal account?Can’t print?Can a co-worker? Take a diskette to Kinko’s?No share access to something?Can you get in and to them?
60Set Realistic Expectations Follow Priority GuidelinesAssess Priority and Impact. Be accurate!Work with your customer to understand their needs.Inform your customer:If you can’t find much information on their topicIf you need to “try out a queue” to see if it is the right place
61Tips for the Whole Process Partner with your customer- Become co-owner of the problem- Use “we”, “our” statements instead of “your”Let your customer vent whenever necessaryStall for time while you look things upor negotiate with your customer to call them back.Even if the Customer says “Don’t bother,”get the answer anyway and get back to them- They’ll appreciate the extra service.- You’ll have the correct answer the next time.
62Offer an Apology with an Action Don’t just say:“I’m sorry, I’ve never run into this before”“I’m sorry, we don’t get calls on this very often”Add:“Let me check to find out what we can do...”to find the right person to help youto find the best solution to your problemOr…“I want to discuss this with my supervisorand find the best solution for you.”
63Minimum Requirement: Get the Problem Documented Correctly! Wade through customer jargon to note true nature of the issuesWork through to identify key statementsRead back statements customer has made so you at least get the nature of the problem isolated, even if you don’t understand.
64Don’t… Assign Blame Pretend you know what to do or what you are doing Be apathetic to their needs (Negotiate instead)And Don’t Just say “No!”Focus on what the customer can do for themselves,and how you can help them get it done!Say “I can’t…” Say instead:“There are a couple of ways we can do this, let me suggest…”As a very last resort, let them know “Policy has changed…” or “Our procedure is to…”
66How can you work smarter... ToolsTeamworkCase DocumentationCriticism
67Tools Check every single tool that you have! Knowledge Tool Process InformationTraining InformationInternetHave every tool ready to go…Start looking for information any chance you get...
68Personal Goal: Increase Your Knowledge Become well versed in what you support.Read ManualsStudy OnlineAttend TrainingUse applications yourselfLearn from experts around youThe more you know, the better your service will be.
69Teamwork Every agent is here because of some kind of skill. Leverage off each other’s knowledge… You may know things that your neighbor does not. Your neighbor may know things you don’t know.Gain from each other’s strengths…The Call Center is successful because of Teamwork!
70Help Your Neighbor Share information when you have it. Discuss recent developments.Get clarification when needed.Listen to events around you.Let your Lead know... when something isn’t working right.
72Effective Communication of Customer Issues When documenting issues, keep in mind:Your audience…Special needs of service providers.Special circumstances for your customer.Special circumstances affecting you.
73Minimum Documentation Standards Every case you write must contain enough information so that someone else could read the case and know what steps you took to resolve the customer’s problem or issue.This is true even if you close the case.Remember, that “someone else” could be another agent, your lead, or supervisor, a customer (or his manager), or a service provider.The unwritten rule is “show your work”.
74Who is your audience?Take special care if an issue needs to be sent to a service provider or background team.What are their needs?Do they have special information requirements?What they need to know about your status?What might be impacting them?Helping your service provider,helps your customer get faster service!Can you help your service provider by giving extra information?If you have spent a long while trouble-shooting a call, can you sum up what the current problem is in the beginning of your entry?Customer needs access to share xyz on xxxyyyzzz serverSteps I took to troubleshoot were:Carbon Copy didn’t work…Net meeting did…Server is xxxxyyyzzzIP address isPinged IP address from Customer PC it is up.Others in his group can access.He had access until yesterday.
75Get It Right the First Time! Review Request :Request information can help you find an owner.Assess the Action:Refer to guidelines on what does and does not qualify as a “problem”.Add a copy of the .If you don’t write it down, it didn’t happen.
76Get It in Your Case Notes... Include important information like:Customer Impact and PriorityCustomer workaround/lack of workaroundResources you have checked tools - agents - leads - service provideDocument this information!Add a copy of the .If you don’t write it down, it didn’t happen.
77Special Documentation Needs Take the extra effort to document extraordinary issuesSpecial customer issues work-at home? Traveling? financial impact?Major system failuresNon-standard business hoursCollectionsSpecial escalation processesDowntime proceduresOvertime issuesWorking After Hours - your service provider may not notice a time changeMake sure major system failures end up in collectionsEnd User Recovery process or other escalation procedures - follow changes closely. Get full detail in the ticket.Were you down (BLT or your PC)…take a few minutes to add that phrase in your case…could save lot’s of research time later.Was something down at your customer site that might relate…mention it, your service provider may not know.Did you get stuck on a call at the end of your shift? Document your persistence in getting the customer issue resolved.
78Prevention is the Key Before you hang up double-check… …accuracy of the customer information Location -…technical information Apple Model - Operating System Internet Address…for inconsistencies…your understanding of the case
79Effective EscalationWhen you must escalate something to your Management, give them necessary data to understand the issue:Case number(s) involvedBrief overview of the current issueReview what has transpired in the pastFind any related cases for them.Don’t bring up everything under the sun.
81Interpreting Criticism Agents are working with a multitude of processes and tools.All tools and processes are under constant evaluation for suitability and effectiveness.Criticism provided is not always about you, but may be about the a process or documentation.
82Sources of Feedback Anticipate feedback from: Apple Managers… Volt Management…Service Providers…or even fellow agents.
83Uses for Information and Feedback Agents use the information to improve individual performance.Volt Management uses the information to suggest improvements to our service.Apple Management can use information to improve processes and assess business needs.