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How to Create a Customer-Centric Service Culture

There’s a new customer in town. And this customer expects the world of your business to revolve around them. Digital technology such as field service automation has changed the way field service companies do business, and now customers want to be offered products and services that were developed specifically with their goals  in mind. Creating a service culture built around customers is more important than ever for field service companies. A recent report by Aberdeen Research reveals the best ways to start building that service culture for your own business.

Recruit and Retain the Best Talent

Creating a customer-centric service culture starts with building a team that can deliver great service. So it’s important to first take a look at your current employees and see where they have shortcomings. Are some of your techs struggling with servicing certain kinds of equipment while others need a long time to complete reports? Then you should do something to address those particular issues and fill in those knowledge gaps. The best way to do this would be to provide additional training for your current employees. For example, according to the Aberdeen report “Service Culture in 2015: Creating an Environment of the Customer,” the best companies are 27% more likely to ensure their sales agents and marketing teams receive occasional trainings on current and upcoming offerings. And 76% of the best organizations offer periodic trainings.

Once your techs are trained and you understand their shortcomings, it’s time to avoid “brain drain.” Retaining talent is critical to building a service culture since seasoned techs will be more knowledgeable about services and company offerings. Additionally, veteran workers can help train new hires. It’s important that field service organizations encourage knowledge transfers since it helps the whole company do well, not just the field service techs. Aside from retaining employees, smarter recruiting should be enacted so you hire potential employees who have a service mindset, even if they are in a department that doesn’t come in direct contact with customers.

Multiple Service Offerings

Customers no longer expect to receive one type of service. Now with new technology and social media, customer service should be offered on different channels to meet and exceed customer expectations. And customers don’t want to be forced to receive traditional service from a technician or agent; they’d like to be offered different types of service be it self-service like scanning a QR code to receive a manual or remote option like guidance through smart glasses. Customers do not always want to have to call-in a technician or interact with a person. Sometimes these interactions require a lot of effort on the customer’s part, but the best customer service means quickly resolving problems with the least amount of effort expended to solve them. That way only problems that need to be escalated will be attended to by technicians because the customer was not successful using another type of service. The best service organizations are 23% more likely to ensure that their service systems are integrated with ERP, CRM, and other customer management systems.

Understand Customer Values

Field service organizations that treat customers as friends and really prioritize their goals and KPIs will receive the highest customer satisfaction ratings. Providing service that keeps in mind your customer's value and what they want to achieve from using your equipment is a key step in building a culture around service. Each customer is going to have individual goals, so the kind of service they receive should be personalized. Implementing field service software will help you tailor your service to each particular customer’s needs rather than offering a blanket solution that may not work for every organization. Keep in mind, the happier the customer, the more likely they are to continue doing business with you and to spread the word about your services to other people. And that means your revenue from that customer will be something you can rely on and you’ll earn additional revenue from the new customers they refer.

While building a service culture around customers can be viewed as an overwhelming task, 54% of the best-in-class businesses surveyed in Aberdeen’s report focused on making sure their companies are staffed with strong talent that have been given the tools, training, and customer information to do their jobs well and provide great customer-centric service. Equipping your technicians with a mobile field service solution will not only help you build a customer-centered service culture but also maintain that culture for years to come.