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ACHIEVING CUSTOMER SATISFACTION THROUGH CUSTOMER SERVICING

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Market research 04 12
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Table of Contents

01

WHAT IS CUSTOMER SERVICE ?

Customer service is a support activity performed in almost every organization with the motive of handling customer grievances and clarifying queries with the overall goal of enriching customer experience. It helps in building good company-customer relations by communicating with the customer through email , one on one phone calls , messaging or through the company website. Good customer service enhances goodwill of the company among the customers and leads to satisfactory purchases , indirect promotion , increased sales and positive feedback . The customer service professional is required to address each and every question which the customer has with respect to their purchases, offers , payment method , delivery , return policy and also gather after sales feedback . This makes the customer feel valued to the company which leads to repeated purchases.

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02

WHY IS CUSTOMER SERVICE IMPORTANT?

According to a 2018 study by Forbes , companies lost business worth 75 billion due to poor customer service and 67 percent of the customers became “ serial switchers” i.e. they switched to other brands simply because of bad customer service. Lack of customer experience ,  unsatisfactory solutions , rudeness and impolite behavior and being passed on from one person to the next were listed as the reasons for this switch .

Clearly, customer service is a highly valued function of every business that serves as a point of human contact between the customer and the business . So the customer’s perception of the business is shaped by the attitude displayed by the customer service rep of that company . It provides the companies a chance to build good reputation with the customer and  thus, generate brand loyalty . This is why choosing a customer service professional carefully is an important task for every organization. The company has to make sure that the service professional embodies the company values and has the necessary qualities for treating every person with the utmost respect .

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03

TYPES OF CUSTOMER SERVICES

On the basis anticipation and primary responder , customer service can be classified as

PROGNOSTIC AND REACTIVE

Prognostic approach allows the company to anticipate customer issues and approaching them with solutions . Here , the company’s service rep is the first to start an interaction and displays foresight on the company’s part . It informs the customer a problem faced by most buyers of a particular product and provides them a guide to follow when they face the same issue. For example: Better cloud , a U.S. based tech company uses the assistance of its proactive support department to identify customer issues before they occur which allows them to reach out to customers even before they make contact and also help those customers who simply dismiss the issue without seeking any support. Other companies include Amazon , Virgin media , Autopilot etc

Reactive approach , on the other hand , is the most common customer service practice that involves customers taking the first step to resolve their issues by reaching out to companies . The customers are the initiators in this case .This method tests the preparedness of the companies to tackle issues and resolve problems efficiently. The manner in which customer service rep interacts with the person determines the quality of service and adds to customer experience For example: Companies such Wipro which run call centers follow this approach . Calls are received from around the world and callers are trained and educated about each aspect of the company so that they can become effective respondents for customers.

On the basis of reaction time :

SYNCHRONOUS AND ASYNCHRONOUS SUPPORT

Synchronous support requires the company reps to interact with the customers and solve their respective issues on a real time basis . This does not provide the company rep time  to research and consult with their colleagues before suggesting any solutions to the customers . They have to be equipped with all the knowledge so that they can serve as a guide to the customer and resolve their issues on a timely basis . Failing to do so can damage company reputation and lead to loss of customers . This method is particularly useful as it eliminates the waiting period for the customers which can cause dissatisfaction and adds an interpersonal touch useful for analyzing customer problems in detail . Live chat or one to one calling are examples of synchronous support.

Asynchronous support provide the convenience of ample response time for the company reps . This also allows them to resolve multiple customer issues simultaneously. Social media interactions via direct messaging serves as an asynchronous method. Customers feel free to get in touch with the company and are assured response within a certain time frame. Almost all companies have the availability of asynchronous support especially for un encountered issues which needs expert assistance .

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04

OBJECTIVES OF CONDUCTING CUSTOMER SERVICES

The company objective of customer service is to improve customer experience with the company . Customers only support brands as long as they feel that the brand is not negligent towards people’s needs and that customer satisfaction is a top priority . That is why the manner of speaking and tone of the company personnel is key because it reflects the attitude that the organization has towards its buyers. They need to ensure that the interests of the company is not limited to making profits and using the customer as a mere means.

Building good reputation : Remember that customers focus on the attitude that you have as a company employee . It is very important to be patient and listen to the customer carefully before suggesting solutions . Solutions should only be provided if they are guaranteed to relieve the customer of his/her issues. A genuine interest in solving the customer’s problem plays well with them and allows them to be appreciative of company efforts .

Focus on customer retention : Customers will be loyal to your brands if they associate with the company values and vision. If their needs are not catered to properly , then they tend to switch to other brands which leads to loss of business . This can be done by sharing brand stories , conveying upcoming offers , conducting follow-ups and designing incentives customized to customer needs.

All these practices makes the customer feel valued by the company and helps in building brand equity which impacts profitability and growth in the long run.

05

PRE-REQUISITE SKILLS NEEDED FOR CUSTOMER SERVICE PROFESSIONALS

EYE FOR DETAIL

It is important to pay heed to everything being explained by the customer about his issues with a product or service . Do not interrupt them . Allow them to complete and carefully understand the crux of their problem before suggesting solutions. Point out the problem as identified by you through their narrative . This will make them believe that the customer service representative is actually concerned about their problem . Note down any important points that could be used as valuable input for later.

EMPATHETIC

Its important to identify a customers state of emotions and allow them to vent out their anger before moving onto the issues faced by them . Its important that a the company representative sympathizes with the customer and takes responsibility for company faults and flaws. This makes the customer feel relieved and allows them to stay composed while the company professional guides them through the process of resolving their issue.

CLARITY 

The customer service professional must have clarity when explaining the solutions or company policy . Information related to any aspect of customer’s problem must not be missed out . This can lead to ineffective solutions and can leave a bad image . Educate yourself completely before passing on any information with surety. Remember , asking for some time to get back to them is not an issue as long as you’re coming up with the right explanation.

RELATIONSHIP BUILDING

Treat every call or interaction as an opportunity to strengthen company relations with customers . Try to establish connection by relating with the customers state of mind. Do not be too dismissive of the customers words. Get them to open up and gain a hold of the situation . This proves to be beneficial for company in the long run.

LEARN TO HANDLE PRESSURE

Its important not to panic when the customer refuses to listen . Try to grab their attention when you see the window and explain how you are there to serve them . Try to calm them by explaining that the issue can only be resolved through  mutual understanding . Explain how the company has resolved multiple similar issues in the past and how much the company values each and every customer. This can be effective to get customers to listen to what you have to say.

06

RESPONSIBILITIES OF A CUSTOMER SERVICE PROFESSIONAL

  • The responsibilities of a customer service representative varies from one organization to another depending on the emphasis put on customer interaction and creating better experiences .

    The main duties of the professional are as follows :

    • Acting as a touch point between clients and the company
    • Resolving issues and grievances
    • Recording valuable information which can be used by the company departments
    • Researching and creating database
    • Gathering feedback to ensure customer satisfaction
    • Creating support documents

    These skills should be adequately learned and brushed up from time to time via company training to make sure customer servicing practices are updated .

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07

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS FOR CUSTOMER SERVICE RESPRESENTATIVE INTERVIEWS

  1. What do you understand by customer servicing ?
  2. Out of all the corporate positions , why do you see yourself as a customer service professional ?
  3. What are the issues that can invite the skill set of a customer service professional?
  4. Have you handled customer servicing before? If yes , narrate your worst and best experiences with solutions that you suggested for both ?
  5. As a customer , what would be your worst definition of a customer service person that you called for fixing ABC situation ?
  6. Why our company and not any other client servicing agency ?
  7. What do you expect from a company dealing with customer issues all the time ?
  8. How would you tackle a customer related problem that you do not know the answer to ?
  9. What are the things you feel a company should be looking for , when hiring a customer service professional? Do you believe you possess those qualities ?

What sets you apart from other applicants and how do you plan to put those skills into application through this job?

TIPS FOR FRAMING GOOD ANSWERS

BE GENUINE : Don’t attempt to exaggerate answers in order to impress . Be concise and clear with your answers .

NARRATE EXPERIENCES : Always try to add in with experiences to support your answers . This gives an impression that you have handled a situation and previously and so , posses prior knowledge .

BE CONFIDENT : Only if you are sure about your answers, will you be able to communicate effectively to the company’s customers . This is a quality that is looked out for in all positions involving frequent interactions and negotiations.

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