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To keep a supply chain up and running smoothly takes a lot of skillful finessing, to say the very least. And it seems like year after year the shipping industry gets a bit more competitive as the market continues to grow, raising the proverbial bar just that much higher.
To keep themselves in the race, companies are monitoring their KPIs, making better use of LTL shipping methods, and focusing more effort on yard management. These were all really big trends that we witnessed throughout most of 2018.
But did you know that aside from all of those really good points of interest, there is actually one area of your operation that might be more important?
I’m about to hit you with a big ball of truth…
The customer service experience you provide is equally as important as the rest of your supply chain efforts.
Yes, you read that right. All of your other logistics-based metrics are wonderful for their respective areas of focus. Maybe you even have the absolutely fastest shipping times around and have the lowest rate of returned goods.
But the real question is… How well are you taking care of your customers?
Keeping your customers satisfied is absolutely crucial to the growth of your company.
So today, we're talking about the top 3 reasons why your customer service department is performing poorly. Furthermore, we are going to talk about how you can take action right now to fix it.
If you are a CEO or an executive of a company and you are reading this right now, I want to issue you a challenge.
I challenge you to get to know your customer service department better. I don’t mean only the logistics behind how it all works… I mean the people who power it. Physically get up, go to your customer service team and spend a day or two working with them.
See, it’s great if you know how the system works in theory, but can you tell me how your team works together to actually implement it on a daily basis? How do they know when to escalate an issue? Realistically, how many phone calls or emails do each of the team members receive and have to try to solve every day? What “off-the-cuff” methods do they use when nothing else is helping resolve the issue for your customer?
Without understanding the importance of the team that powers your customer service process, you will never be able to improve it.
Ask any successful CEO where a lot of the companies’ marketing funds go. I can almost assure you that they will mention digital marketing ranking somewhere between 1st and 3rd on that list.
Nowadays, almost everyone who owns a smartphone can be found on some sort of social media platform. If you can’t find someone on Facebook, just check Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn or Snapchat and you will probably find them.
As a matter of fact, we have some statistics of social media usage from a recent survey from the Pew Research Center. According to the survey, roughly three-quarters of the U.S. public (about 73%) use more than one social media platform.
That is a large number of human eyes scrolling through these platforms around the clock. Out of all those eyes, some of them belong to your customers. So it would stand to reason your customer service department should be just as pronounced as your online presence.
By doing this, you can get out important updates to customers eagerly awaiting their packages that have been delayed for one reason or another. And you achieve the same result without making them pull up tracking numbers or logging into your website. One less step for your customers reduces stress on their end. In turn, you can decrease some of the legwork that your customer service team would otherwise have to handle individually. This may not always be the case, but it doesn’t hurt to put more streamline practices in place.
There is a drastic contrast that we need to take a second to highlight here. While you should certainly, and reasonably, expect your customer service agents to use every tool available, you are also responsible for making sure that those tools are at their disposal.
Your customer service agents are just not equipped to handle everything they encounter. This is something that we touched on lightly at the beginning of this list. However, we felt it should be discussed a bit further.
If you want your customer service team to be strong and capable of getting their job done correctly, efficiently, and quickly, you may need to consider putting more funding into team training. By spending on things like empowering your employees, you increase the quality of your customer's experience with your brand.
One of the most overlooked roles in most companies is also one of the most public-facing positions. Aside from core KPIs, managing a YMS, and keeping your warehouse and shipping speeds up to par, your customer service department is vital to keeping your customers satisfied and informed.
Your customer service efforts can truly make or break your brand in a heartbeat.
Don’t know where to start? Drop us a line and let’s talk about how we can help you revitalize your customer service team.