Within any business you must be prepared to deal with customer complaints. There could be a variety of reasons why a customer has a complaint query, from poor customer service, to a faulty product, or substandard practical service. Whatever the reasons behind a customer complaint it is important that you have the right processes built in to your teams, with the correct channels and checklists for all employees to follow during a complaint. Call escalation is when a caller asks for a complaint to be escalated and moved on to a manager of a customer service agent, or through to a dedicated complaints team.
There are a few ways in which you can train your staff members to produce high levels of consistent quality when communicating with customers over complaints and queries. There are also ways in which you can build in effective measures and processes into the framework of your company to deal with queries and complaints.
You staff members should be taught how to listen to customers in the first instance. If a caller is angry or not in the first few seconds of a phone call it is important to take the time to listen to them, and not react in a negative manner. Make note of the major points of a customer complaint, as this will help you to find a route to a solution once a caller has calmed down. If a caller is angry and threatening, crossing the line of acceptability, follow your specific company guidelines on how to handle difficult customers.
It is important to always stay calm throughout a call with a customer. Focus on your breathing and maintaining a calm, neutral tone throughout the conversation, and have empathy with the caller. Always make sure to repeat the callers name throughout the conversation, and repeat back bits of information they have provided you. This helps to build a rapport with the customer and demonstrates that you are listening to the problems they are facing and are actively looking for a resolution on their behalf.
One other thing that drives callers mad is when they are asked to wait, and placed on hold for a long period of time. If it is at all possible, don’t put a complaining customer on hold, as it is only likely to inflame the situation and cause further frustration.
Always ensure that your customer service team is fully prepared to field complaints, to resolve any queries and issues that a customer might have about your products or service, and have a stringent complaints procedure in place that allows your customer service team to know exactly what to do with a customer complaint, whilst looking after the customer at all times. Your customers are the most important part of your business and its ability to thrive and continue to grow. Without them your organisation would not be able to survive, so ensure you listen to them in a fair and balanced way, and continue to analyse and improve the customer service practice your company provides. By employing the services of a dedicated contact centre team to help you deal with call escalations and overflow calls you can ensure there is help available at all times.