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Any company that depends on the loyalty and happiness of its customers to keep the business thriving will want all its employees to approach their job roles from a customer-focused perspective. Customer service skills refer to traits and practices that prepare an employee to understand and address customer needs and deliver a positive experience in all customer interactions. Typically, customer interactions are problem-solving in nature and depend heavily on effective communication.
At the heart of all successful companies is a commitment to customer care. A commitment to this mindset can help your organization develop a loyal customer base and improve relationships with your customers. While it is a always important to drive new business, customer retention and loyalty are critically important to the success and growth of most companies.
What is Customer Service?
Customer service refers to both a specific job role within a company, as well as a set of job skills. As a job role, customer service professionals have the responsibility of communicating with customers to learn about and address their needs In order to ensure they have a good experience with your company. As a skill set, it includes such qualities as active listening, empathy, problem-solving and effective communication. Customer service can apply to many different job roles within the organization.
Enhancing Customer Satisfaction through Relationships
Great customer service is about managing the perceptions your customers have of your company by consistently creating positive experiences for them. To increase customer satisfaction, companies must work to establish relationships with their clients by building good rapport. They must then meet or exceed their customer expectations in every interaction. And the most successful companies never take their customers for granted. Instead, the strive to keep communicating with them so they can properly respond as their needs change and reward them for their continued loyalty.
Four Critical Customer Service Skills
While the list of qualities that create exceptional customer service representatives can be quite long, here are four of the most important traits they must possess.
Effective communication is about responding to your customers in a timely manner and then interacting with them in a clear, easy-to-understand way in order to effectively identify and solve a problem or concern.
A customer service interaction often begins with someone who is frustrated or unhappy your company, its products or services. It is important for the customer service representative to identify and understand the feelings of these clients and manage communications accordingly.
In any given customer service interaction, the customer might ask a number of questions and may ask the representative to repeat instructions several times. In these situations, maintaining a high level of patience is required to ensure that the experience is both productive and positive.
Product or Service Knowledge
To effectively solve problems, the representative will likely need to have substantial knowledge regarding the company’s offerings and the customer’s use and expected benefits of the offering.
Training to Improve Customer Service Skills
Given the importance of effective customer service, it is critical that your company provide proper training to teach effective customer service skills to any employee that might have interactions with your clients.
Some of the benefits you can expect from the implementation of a customer service skills training program can include:
Improved Knowledge and Skills
Effective customer service training will address such things as the importance of listening to the customer, building problem-solving approaches to customer concerns, and the need to be organized. A thorough program will also include content that ensures your representatives possess the required knowledge (product, service, industry, etc.) to effectively assist the customer.
When customer service representatives believe they have the skills needed to do a job well, they are more inspired to do their jobs and bring a higher level of energy and enthusiasm to their customer interactions. This positive attitude is conveyed to the customer and invariably leads to better service outcomes.
Increased Customer Loyalty and Retention
Effective training will lead to better customer interactions, resulting in happier customers who are more likely to remain loyal to your company and its offerings. Given this, customer service representative skills training is an initiative that is likely to bring significant financial benefits to your organization.
eLearning for the Development of Customer Service Representative Skills
As online technologies have continued to evolve, eLearning has emerged as one of the primary ways companies are delivering customer service training. If you are considering the implementation of an eLearning program for customer service skills development at your company, some of the benefits you can expect include:
eLearning provides a low-cost way to create and deliver effective customer service training programs. With eLearning, you eliminate most of the substantial costs associated with classroom-based training, such as travel, classroom fees, catering, and printed materials.
eLearning allows your employees to conduct their training activities at a time and place that is convenient for them. All they need is an Internet connection (and, in fact, many activities can be conducted offline). And with eLearning, there is no need to pull employees away from their customer service duties during business hours.
Many eLearning platforms now offer powerful tools for data capture and analysis. The review of this data can be very valuable as you work to revise and improve your customer service training program over time.
eLearning platforms often include tools for online collaboration, both among students and between students and instructors. These communications help to drive effective learning and offer great channels for program feedback.
LMS Portals for Customer Service Representative Skills Training
LMS Portals provides a cloud-based platform for building powerful eLearning programs. Our system allows you to build and manage your own branded eLearning portal for the development and delivery of online courses and includes tools for communication, collaboration, and program analytics.
Contact us to schedule a demonstration of the LMS Portals technology