Showing posts with label Customer Service Management. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Customer Service Management. Show all posts
Customer Service 2.0
The idea, A customer service which can accommodate all the requirements of a customer support, needs of the business, and Needs of the client.
Focusing on the growth not revenue, focusing on the best calls and best support provided to the customer, a customer can demand an unexpected discount/a replacement and we should be able to do that in click of a button.
The product: An all-powerful customer support soft device which can have facilities for the support agents to 


1. Answer the calls
2. To call the customer back
3. A computer with access to all the websites
4. A direct connect with the service provider (Client)
5. Agent centric approvals
6. State of the art seating arrangement for a relaxed agent.
7. The soft device must be integrated with the Quality team
8. Any call which has shouting meaning the noise on the call is above 80 Decibel must be sent to Quality team immediately.
9. Chat service
10. Email Service

This is not an ACD or a Dialler or a Chat but all in one. We are very close to it I can say we are at 60% of the above CRM. Agents seats must have a

a) 4′ x 4′ footprint.
b) The cubicle must have flexible aesthetics,
c) Eco-friendly panelling material for the panels,
d) Adjustable partition heights,
e) Can have good space to bring a comfortable office furniture like chair to the table.

We are in a process of doing this at our center, its tough to do it keeping the cost in mind but our mantra is growth against the revenue.

Customer service should be all pervading. We should be able to get business of a client from any part of life like medical Industry, Telecome, Autombile, Inernet service provvider, Recruitment, Real Estate and so on as I truly belive in the fact that all the customer services are the same. We can resolve customers issues basically by being a passionate customer support rep, we can resolve any pain of a customer by making the person on the other side of the phone trust us. The technical part of the customer sevices can be learned that’s no biggie.


Why Our customer service is different, It is because
  1. All hands rise seminars where any agent can ask a question which bothers him or he/she needs a clarification.
  2. Our customer service Managers/Team Leaders/agents fight with the clients we are servicing so we can provide as much satisfaction to the customer as we can. Belive you me sometimes I have to get in the fight just to pacify both sides. Usually my teams demand is what they are trained to do, they want the customer to be happy no matter what. Sometimes this disappoints the clients but ultimately they understand its for the good for their brand.
  3. We keep staff 20% more than required to make sure that the calls are answered as quickly as they can. We don’t like that redline of the ACD. WFM is our forte. Minimum to zero hold is the solution to all customer.
  4. Agents are not suppose to look at the AHT (Average handling time) they are suppose to look at a happy cutomer 😊
  5. No IVR. We don’t like IVR so our IVR a basic one which says ‘ Thank you for calling let me connect you to the next available rep’
  6. Agents are trained in such a way that when the call lands to his/her station he/she recognizes the name of the customer on CRM and greets the cutomer with last name. Tries to be as pleasant as he/she can, depending on the mood of the customer
  7. Our Agents takle responsibility hence they need all the mentioned facilities above. They want the ownership of the resolution and want to follow up until the customer is happy. They give unprecendented discounts/replacements/vouchers which a few times are so big that I have to discount our clients. As the discount was too big for the client to cover. We never stop them from taking decisions that’s how we want them to be, BOLD, that’s how they should be.We go that extra mile.
  8. 100% Call monitoring and Feedback sessions, we are listening to 100% calls of each agents. We have a (1 QC on 2 Agents) team of quality trainees whose job is to listen to each call and raise the red, oragne or green flags.
    • Red: Bad Call agent must be terminated upon the Quality heads finall call
    • Orange: Quality Team leaders must listen to the call to either clear it as a green call or mark it to the next level.
    • Green Call: A call which was satisfactory and the customer was happy. We don’t belive in a wow Call as we think every call should be a wow call.
  9. We respect and love our agents so if a customer is nasty and cursing, we niether entertain that customer nor we explain that to our clients.The quality team send the call recording to the client
  10. The customer service hierrachy is as such that if the customer is not happy with the agent on a call next level should be his team leader the next level should be his Manager the next level is I (The CEO of the customer service) and then the next level is the Vice president of the Client. After that the clients decide what they want to do to conclude that call.
This is our demand to work with any client.


We are a flat organization with minimum hierrchy with all small and very few big cubicles. We keep it simple. Our managers sit with agents on the operations floor.Giving freedom to each one of them, that gives us the advantage to be better. We keep the people who are passionate and creative happy.

The Definition of creative with SSR is as good as (How Google works) defines (Our Agents mostly women,)
* ‘She is a person who knows the tools of her trade.
* She is analytically smart, she is comfortable with that extra mile to go to make a customer happy.
* She is Business smart and belives in excellance rathar than somehow surviving.
* She is competetive smart she belives in improving her and her coworkers by innovation and new ideas.
* She understands what we do and belives in SSR instead of just acting.
* She comes up ith genuine new ideas not stolen ones.
* She is curious, she questions herself, her bosses and the clients to get a new perspective. Never happy with the status quo.
* She takes risks, for example she gives unprecedented discounts/ replacements and is damn confident that she did the right thing.
* She doesn’t wait to be told she takes initiative.
* She is a free spirit, collborates with different departments like Quality, IT and HR to finds solutions for her and her peers. A problem solver.
* She can recite the details as and when anyone asks.
* She is funny and knows how to express herself. Instead of a talkative she is communicative.

We are in process I can’t say that I have all creative smarts working with me but we are training and working closely with everyone. We are at 97% efficiency, that 3% will always be tough but we know how to reach there and we will reach there. I love my team, I love their passion.

Demons of Customer Service Management and how to deal with them!
In this blog, I would be talking about a few common customer service demons that I have personally experienced in my journey and would give possible solutions on how to avoid or eliminate them:

Demon 1: Long IVR’s or any IVR (I hate IVR when I call any customer Services)

Customers waiting for an agent to resolve their concern and they are greeted by mechanical voices, although we cannot deny that we all love technology but whenever it comes to handling customer’s queries/issues, we need emotional connect which cannot be fulfilled by bots.

Our Solution: Try incorporating as much human support in your enterprises as possible. Robots are viable when doing mechanical work or when one wants to live leisure or a comfortable life but when it comes to assistance, you need the voice of real person like oxygen. Ideally, it should connect with customer in the maximum 2 rings, there are people who will say it's not practical to think like this but remember there were people who said women can’t fly a plane, drive a car or vote? Full disclosure, I hate Siri and Alexa too and if you don’t then please stop raising your voice when you ask something, they don’t get 😊

Demon 2: Unskilled bad apple of Employees

An uneducated, unethical, or immoral agent could prove to be a pain for the whole organization and especially in providing effective care to the customers.
Our Solution: To Kill bad apple germs, you need a good disinfectant in CSR case. That disinfectant is 100% call monitoring and thorough product knowledge. Making sure that we listen to 100% of the calls and give feedback and training. Why 100%? Because every customer service representative will know that there is no escape. An enhanced recruiting process and effective training program could surely help in eliminating this devil. The main aim of the service provider should be ready to support their customers until they are at a reasonable (Satisfied or next step of the SOP along with the exact time of response must be given to the customer) point to exit from the call of the customer.


Demon 3: Avoiding Customers query 

Providing incomplete solutions with no real meat of satisfaction or worse than this would be pushing Call service agents' own agenda on customers. These half-hearted solutions will surely degrade your brand value and trust, which is surely the last thing you would want to lose in business. 

Our Solution: Discussing their concern on a regular basis, keeping an interactive session with a friendly mood would surely prove to be a decisive factor in easing up the mood of the agents so that whenever they are back to work they work wholeheartedly. Periodic counseling sessions could even prove to be decisive in this case. Again 100% call monitoring will eliminate such issues. We love and respect our agents if a customer curses we ask them not to take it and disconnect the call, and God forbid if an agent does that then his/her services will no longer be needed. We make sure that product knowledge is hammered in all the agent's heads so they don’t avoid a query.

Demon 4: From Demon to Devil

The supervisor call got transferred is worse than the agent. The supervisor leading the group of agents is not a good fit. 

Our Solution: Whenever a query comes which is beyond the expertise of the agents, they transfer it to the supervisor. The customers must wait for that time duration on hold expecting that the wait would be worthy. Nothing could be worse than a supervisor sounding like a jerk, for a firm as it will promote a negative brand image. Our team of experts might not be the best in the world, but I can surely assure this that customers will never go unsatisfied. We provide solutions sometimes going out of the way. Even if at some point in time we are short of providing the required assistance to our customers (due to whatsoever issues) We give them an appropriate time that we will get back to you by then and we make it quite certain that we keep our words.

Demon 5: The same old Policy Feces! Or Cutting Corners

Instead of providing an authentic solution, the agent sidelines the concern by saying that this is our policy.

Our Solution: I have seen this when I work as an agent some 14 years ago and consecutively heard this many a times as a customer, so I know how it feels when an agent hang-up the call without a constructive solution. Agent blaming the service providers policy for his incompetence is pathetic. Whenever an agent is short with a solution, he uses this phrase, “This is our company’s policy”. Or typical Bharti nonsense that “our systems are getting upgraded” Provide solutions instead of cutting corners. Customer must be given everything that agent can try and for crying out loud never say ‘This is company policy”. Chase Bank customer support is worst ever despite of all-American agents. So Far American Express is close to be a good support service by the way they are all Indian boys and girls.

I say do your best to make the customer Happy, A customer who feels that even if my request is not resolved, I am still happy because the agent was good, he gave his 100%.
Summary-
  1. 100% Call Monitoring 
  2. Everyday Call playing sessions with a group of 10 reps max
  3. Sorry but sometimes Naming Shaming and Rewarding helps
  4. Tech IT Manager must be ready for any challenge
  5. One-on-One sessions with playing calls
Next blog of the same topic we will discuss solutions in detail.

With everything to offer I say for instance, if a customer calls and says he would want to know the nearest shopping complex or nearest Resto-bar near his location Even though it is not our field but we still try to make sure that we never let go of customers unanswered/dissatisfied. We would ask them to wait and would possibly guide them if we are aware of it and if not we will try to take approval from the manager and assist the customer.

100% Call monitoring/great Product Knowledge always puts our customer support in the front seat.