Customer support process flow is the key to retaining existing customers as well as gaining new ones to further expand your business. Companies need to create a support system that scales according to the type of inputs you get from customer feedback. This is how you connect support to competitor research, market research, survey, and more. Customer support is an open box. Custom service grows in value over time; you have to figure out how to connect all these different customer inputs to the appropriate members on your team. Workflow of your customer service department helps to customer experience and manages their expectations. Consumer expectations include a bit of personalization, agent understanding issues correctly, and resolution within a reasonable time frame. You need to have efficient workflow to meet average expectations of your customers.
Different workflows of real companies are:
- For Beginners: Centralized information
If company is just started then they often have only one support rep or a rounder who takes care of all support. Mostly support occurs by only channel that is email. At this point of time feedback is essential across your team. If you are using email for consumer service then the most important thing is to use a single email inbox that everyone in the company can access. It is not enough to keep support requests in one place. You also have to communicate the high-level takeaways from support to the rest of the team. The most important thing is to communicate common trends in customer support across your entire team.
- For intermediate: Categorize Feedback
When company grows, it builds out their service team, and process larger number of feedback request. Now email becomes less effective to broadcast customer support requests. At this stage in a company, you might have multiple product owners and different features under development at the same time. To give proper service to customers, companies need to have a proper workflow to process and Categorize Feedback. Categorizing your support requests allows you to connect different types of support requests to the different teams within your company. This makes accountability for handing support requests more clear. Clear categorisation enables a team to take all feedback into account, identify patterns in volume and frequency, and prioritize more effectively.
- For advanced: Segment and automate
Connecting different types of support requests to different team members helps you scale support across your company. As you get more advanced, the challenge is to make support more efficient so you don’t have to keep hiring support reps to deal with a higher volume of requests.
Steps to improve Customer Service Workflow are:
- Create a Workflow Chart
Start by creating a workflow chart to depict how the support process is carried out and the time it takes for each department to provide a solution or redirect it to another team. Whenever the process slows down, these are the bottlenecks where automation is necessary. It will also help assign work to the right team to avoid slowdowns and respond quickly.
- Approve Refund Claims Quicker
An important aspect where customers get the most irate is when refund claims are delayed stating multiple reasons or asking them to fill a gazillion forms to get approved.
When you sell a product or service, no questions asked refund is considered the unique sales point. By honoring your words, it is much easier to build brand reputation rather than saving a few pennies which could lead to losing a valuable customer permanently.
- Implement Ideas Based on Customer Feedback
When you respond to your buyers, they tend to respect and come back for more. The customer support process is not only about products and services but it’s primarily about satisfying a visitor in every possible aspect. If people complain about bugs on your website or services, not so intuitive UI, get the design team to work on it and fix it. The changes let customers know that their voices are being heard and responded to in a timely manner.
- Connect Teams in a Workflow
Workflow automation software can finally bridge the communication gap between different teams and eradicate process silos. Each task is supposed to be carried out in a short turnaround time but most customer support processes tend to lag behind, leading to unwanted silos. Identify which team is efficient in handling specific customer requirements. The technical team may be strong at solving bugs or responding to product-based queries whereas the shipping team should automatically receive shipping related complaints to eradicate slowdowns.
- Reward Programs for Employees
Instead of always paying for third-party companies, consider reward programs for employees in your organization. Conduct bug bounty events, UI redesign contest, and new product or service ideas to encourage creativity within your team. This can lead to proactive improvements in your company and come up with great ideas to succeed in the competition.
- Use data driven approach
We are in an age where vast amounts of data are created from business interactions on a daily basis. And, we do have several tools and methodologies to use these data to improve systems and processes. However, there is still a wide gap between the customer service department and analytics insights. Companies need to utilize analytics insights more effectively to close this gap and improve their service processes.
- Accurately address customer’s issues
One of the key differentiators of a good customer support team is the ability to direct customers to the right person who can help. Often you may have different products or different kinds of requests coming in from customers. Based on the nature of the query, you might have support agents of different skill level to handle them.
- Manage workflow better with automation
With the efficient use of automation, you can manage a lot more improvements to your customer support department’s workflow. For example, you can automate the workflow by from queries to assign them to a specific agent. Or, you can create trigger-based actions for critical events that require the immediate attention of a support agent. This way, you are saving the support agents from a lot of manual work, and at the same time ensuring a better experience for your customers.
- Install some flexibility in the process
The tools you use also need to be capable of adjustments, according to the specific requirements of your business. A good customer service department will be flexible enough to adjust itself to the expectations and demands of its customer base. Analytics reports will give you clear indicators of what customers prefer in terms of engagement strategies. You should be able to create a workflow that can meet these demands.
Tips for smooth customer service workflow are:
- Categorize and plan your tasks
- Prioritize your channel
- Assign channels and tasks
- Note down what you’re working on
- Shut down all other disruptions
An advantage of consumer service workflow is:
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