When evaluating software, it’s easy to fall back on what you’ve done in the past. Your work computer likely has Windows and the Office suite installed directly on the machine, so why shouldn’t you have software for sales, customer support, marketing, or other industries right alongside it?
Have you ever noticed that when you stop focusing on yourself life seems to roll along at a much easier pace? Customer Service works in a very similar way. When your team starts focusing outward, focusing on putting the customer first, the daily stresses seem less; customers seem happier and as a natural result, there are fewer problems. It’s such an easy fix, but so many times we suffer from focusing on our own issues and get so wrapped up in those that we lose sight of the ultimate goal: providing exceptional customer support.
It’s Monday morning and the last place you want to be after a stressful weekend at your in-law’s house is at work. You’d much rather be at home or perhaps at a spa. But as luck would have it, not five minutes into your day you get an upset customer going off about how their Handy-Made 5000 broke on first use and your company makes shoddy products and needs to replace it immediately. Could the day get any worse?
The success of business-to-business (B2B) customer support relies primarily on how efficiently agents handle incoming tickets. Your organization could have the best, brightest, and most courteous support employees, but the job's not getting done if they can't address incoming queries.
Agents could fall behind on tickets for any number of reasons. Increasing workloads make it harder for reps to manage their daily tasks. Your agents could be using a ticketing system that simply collects customer issues but doesn't organize them, or perhaps customer correspondence gets lost among a slew of incoming emails. If any of these sound familiar or if your agents aren't responding to customers in a timely, organized fashion, it's time to switch to a B2B customer support software solution with support ticket management features.
How many businesses have stopped to consider whether their support styles are actually as customer-centric as they intend? While support teams always have the best customer-first intentions in mind, companies can develop some bad customer support habits that end up complicating the customer experience in unnecessary ways. If your business still engages in either tiered support or scripted phone support, it's time to make some changes to remain competitive. Here's why:
Arranging your agents in tiers according to their skill level makes sense in theory - you want to match customers who have complex issues with knowledgeable agents while leaving new hires to solve simple queries. However, tiered customer support models often end up shuffling customers from one rep to another.
Your business says it's committed to providing a great customer experience, but does it truly put its money where its mouth is? Your marketing and sales teams pull out all the stops, doing everything they can to impress prospective customers. Yet, what happens to those prospects after they purchase your product? Do they receive the same level of attention and quality of service, or are they put in a separate pile and forgotten about?
Customer support shouldn't take a back seat to sales or marketing. It should work with these two teams as part of a three-legged approach to help maintain a positive relationship, no matter where a customer is in the sales funnel.
Your customers aren't the only ones who need support. Every one of your employees needs the ability to do their jobs well, and they rely on the company to make that happen. Without this support, employees can experience work-related stress that affects their performance, leads to more absenteeism and can cause agents to leave your business for another company.
Because they function as two separate departments, many businesses make the mistake of viewing sales and support as independent operations. They see the customer journey as a straight line where the customer comes into contact with the business, purchases a product or service and seeks help from support should any issues arise.
Many areas of business have become data-driven and customer service reporting has become essential for many companies. With fewer customers picking up the phone and replacing these interactions with form submissions, live chats, and emails there are now many data points that create customer (and thus agent) intelligence that did not exist only a couple decades ago. But how can companies make sense of their customer service data and make it actionable to improve their overall bottom line? Read on to find out…
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