Five things every CEO should know about customer service
A CEO has many hats to wear: fundraiser, public speaker, manager, coach and driver. So is it even practical for a busy CEO to have anything to do with customer service? If you consider the myriad of tasks that a CEO has to deal with on a daily basis, it would seem that the function of customer service might not make the cut. However, the perception that customer service is not a C-Suite function is rapidly changing. In fact, 10% of Fortune 500 companies have appointed a Chief Customer Officer to the C-Suite, with 22% planning to d
o so in the future.
However, the CEO can’t offload the customer service department entirely. Why? Five things that affect the organization’s bottom line:
- Reducing agent turnover or “churn” Customer service agents literally serve as the voice of your brand because they are often the first impression for your customers post-sale. They field questions, complaints and work to resolve problems for several hours at a time, all while keeping a smile on their face and their own frustrations at bay. It’s no wonder that this position can be prone to high turnover. In fact, turnover rates can be as high as 40%. Additionally, a recent customer survey revealed that about 76% of consumers view customer service as the true test of how much a company values them. Given these statistics, it is important for CEOs to be well acquainted with the temperature of customer service.
- Banishing the cost center mentality Think of your call center as a customer loyalty engine instead. According to NewVoiceMedia, an estimated $41 billion is lost by US companies each year due to poor customer service. However, according to the same source, after a positive customer experience, 69% of consumers would actually recommend the company to others and 50% of those surveyed tend to use that business more frequently. A Bain & Company report shows that a 5% increase in customer retention can increase profits anywhere from 25%-95%. Rather than seeing the customer service center as a place where costs can be cut, one should really see it as the vital revenue building center that it is.
- Differentiating your brand For good or ill, your customer service center can be what makes or breaks your brand. Zappos is an online retailer who prioritizes quality customer service. According to Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh, “Zappos is a customer service company that just happens to sell shoes.” Amazon’s Jeff Bezos and Virgin Group founder Richard Branson are other examples of CEOs who have built their companies on a customer-centric culture.
- Risk losing great people One of the biggest complaints from agents that contribute to agent apathy and frustration is the inefficiency of their tools and difficulties with their systems. Empowering agents with the tools and knowledge they need to do their jobs
will go a long way in increasing customer engagement on both sides. When agents feel empowered to help their customers coupled with reliable technology their job satisfaction increases. Happy, satisfied agents translate into happy, satisfied customers.
- EVERYONE is a customer representative The bottom line: the customer affects everything from revenue to products and services as well as the reputation of an organization. In the words of Richard Branson: “Customer service is everything in the end.”
HyperQuality believes contact center operations can be turned from cost-centers to revenue generators with a three-part process:
- Perform sharp analysis on care methods with constant calibration
- Provide reliable and valid data for agent improvement
- Engage in a frequent and thorough review process
- This unique three-part approach gives HyperQuality’s clients the freedom to improve — and prove — their customer care and contact center operations every day.
Interesting in learning how HyperQuality can help with your contact center operations? Contact us to learn more.