Excellence in Customer Service is a key driver of business success. It is a primary output for driving profit and growth for any organisation, not only on a micro level, but also on a macro level. It is a major variable in determining the success in all four sectors of the strategic business growth arena.
- Market penetration
- Introduction of new products
- Entering new markets
- Business Diversification
- Customer retention
- Cross selling opportunities
- Customer referrals
- Corporate branding
As global markets become increasingly competitive, the ability to drive traditional business models to success becomes ever more difficult. Traditionally, customer service is seen as an issue which is addressed by staff training initiatives enabling staff to acquire the customer service skills necessary to cushion the interface between Company and Customer to deliver psychological attachment to the relationship.
This historic approach, has been effective in focussing attention on customer service, however, the fragmented nature of such initiatives produces variability of service on a micro level and does not deliver the real cultural change which is necessary to deliver the major corporate strategic objectives, particularly in the present economic climate.
There are three implications as a result of this:
- Variability in management standards of the service – non-uniform customer experience
- Fragmented Skill based training, although effective in delivering outcomes for the individual in terms of personal development is not always aliened with corporate objective, creating a dilution of the effect of training outcomes.
- The synergy benefits of the integrated approach to Customer Service training not being realised.
These issues may lead to
- Brand degradation resulting in customer retention issues
- Insufficient differentiation as a service provider leading to pressure to compete on price alone.
- Lack of opportunity to use Customer Service as a key lever in the corporate growth Strategy and future revenue generation.
Traditionally, customer service delivery has been at the front end of corporate focus.
The transformation of customer service to the next level requires a change in mindset to reposition the customer at the centre of the Company focus and not at the end of a chain.