Sunday, 3 July 2011

Don’t Make me Wait - The Importance of Speedy Customer Service

This was my next topic in any case, however today, having spent about an hour trying to get through to someone at Aviva regarding motor insurance, and listening to my son yesterday spend the whole day trying to sort out Sky, just made me wonder about the sheer arrogance of companies that believe it’s ok to make their customers wait for an efficient, friendly, speedy response.  To anything.

It doesn’t matter what size organisation you are.  With the huge growth in demand of online services and products and the enormous competition out there you simply cannot afford not to look at every detail in your customer service chain.  Too many companies centre their customer service response around their least expensive employees.  If you do this you are heading for a fall which you deserve.

If  you look at our friends across the pond you will find they put customer service first in almost every case.  They tempt and nurture their customers, turning them into loyal repeat buyers and then ‘friends’ by going the extra distance whenever necessary.  Answering calls, live chat availability, response to emails, all are at the forefront.  The customer may not always be right, of course they’re not, but they are the most precious commodity of any business.  Period.

I’m absolutely sure that it wouldn’t matter how many of us petition the larger companies to get rid of their voicemail and ethos of keeping us hanging on for hours and actually get to the phone faster – they simply do not appear to give a damn about the individual.  For everyone else you need to look to your laurels.  Make sure that your customer service response team is well versed in what makes great service – who cares if the marketing director knows?  It’s irrelevant if the person at the end of the line does not.

Respond fast.  Answer emails very quickly with a reply address.  Call me back.  Don’t keep me hanging on and if I have a problem sort it out so that I smile rather than tear my hear out.  In other words.  Don’t make me wait.  Please.