Everything in business is about balance.
Take setting organizational objectives – it’s a balance between having high aspirations and realistic goals. The same could be said for staffing. It requires that perfect central point between being open to new talent and understanding the needs of the company.
A business’s primary obligation is always to serve customers. While they may have different ways of going about it, this goal remains the focal point of every successful company – and yet, even this requires balance.
Companies dread expending resources (time, labour, or money) to improve customer service without getting a return. The balance for customer service specialists lies in improving clients’ experience while keeping costs low.
Why Serving Customers Well Matters More Than Ever
Every company has the goal of keeping customers happy. It’s the key to revenue, profits, and growth – but it’s also a competitive goal.
About 54% of consumers have higher expectations of customer service than they did just one year ago. Companies will look to outdo one another in the area of customer service. For those who oversee this aspect of their business, the mission is clear – keep clients content.
Even in the most successful companies, there are questions about how to achieve this, and more specifically on how to do so within the realm of cost-efficiency. It’s easy to suggest throwing more money into initiatives and plans, but if these don’t provide a return, it can be hugely detrimental to the organization.
The best way to serve customers better is to put them at the centre of a company’s focus. Some people may claim they already do this – but there are easy mistakes to make.
One mistake is viewing customers as a component of the main goal – sales. While sales drive business, it is the overall experience of the customer that matters more for long-term growth and sustainability.
About 70% of a customer’s experience is based on how they feel they’re being treated. That’s right – even a great product at an unbelievable price isn’t always enough.
Serving customers is about knowing what they want. Do they have a particular pain point they’re trying to fix? Do certain questions stop them from fully committing to a sale?
Perhaps the most important question is how to find the answers to these questions and use them effectively.
The Key to Better Service is Better Insights
If companies want to give customers the best experience they need to know about them. Who are they? What is their place in life, and how can the company’s product or service improve that?
There are a few different methods for getting these answers. A company could always simply ask their customers – but this could take a long time. Relying on popular tools like Microsoft Dynamics 365, Power BI, and Logic Apps can help in various ways.
Let’s take the 365 platform for example. Using the customer service tools, companies can gather insights at every step of the sales process. From prospecting through closing, companies can make sure they address customer’s needs.
The built-in intelligence delivers faster insight into every interaction customers have with the company. As long as the platform is integrated, the insights are potentially limitless. Data can be gathered across multiple channels and devices, to deliver fast service in a personalized manner.
An added benefit of using data insights is that it ensures mistakes aren’t made, and critical points of the customer’s journey aren’t ignored. These are the things that typically cause a poor experience. They’re also the things companies spend a lot of money trying to fix.
With insights in place, companies can avoid these issues and thus improve their customer service without drastically increase costs.
Even those who engage in field service can enjoy a Microsoft platform built for them. One of the main focuses of the product is even to reduce operational costs. With the use of AI tools to make decisions for service options based on data from a customer’s experience, serving customers is much simpler.
Automation makes it possible for even the biggest enterprise locations to deliver a great customer experience while keeping costs low.
Serving Customers Doesn’t Have to Mean Cost Increases
Customer service is arguably the most important aspect of business. Given the customer’s experience is such a big part of their overall opinion of a brand, its clear service is a much broader concept than some would think.
It is common to think largescale objectives like this require a lot of financing for success. Costs can be kept low, but only if the company uses the right tools. Smart platforms help companies learn more about their customers and stop them from making the mistakes that can drive customers away.
Insights help companies serve customers better. By knowing what customers are looking for, what they’re unsure about, and what would help them, companies can make cost-efficient decisions.
A great attitude and a stellar support team are important – but nothing can help more than smart platforms built around the customer’s experience.
Do you want to learn more about the intelligent tools that can improve your approach to cost-efficient customer service? Sign up for the Microsoft Art of the Possible Workshop here, or the Assess2Progress workshop here.