What does customer service mean to you?
As a Tradesman, your field service business naturally focuses on the people.
As an electrician, plumber or handyman, your service quality is determined by how great your customer experience is.
You can possess great skills in the field and a remarkable service solution in the market, but if your customer service is poor, you will eventually lose your customers in the long run.
This means the extra effort that you take to invest in developing your customer services will help you grow your business.
According to Gartner’s Insight from 2022, 64% of Businesses wish to grow their business by prioritising customer services. By focusing on the current challenges and trends, businesses are taking steps to provide a better customer experience.
For you, as a tradesman in the competitive industry, setting your business priorities will help you advance. To help you navigate your way through your customer service journey, we are breaking it down into 4 strategies to focus on improving your customer services. Further to that, you can read about the benefits of improving customer service.
4 Key Strategies to Deliver Great Customer Service!
Definition of Customer Service:
In line with Oxford the language definition, customer service is the assistance or advice a company (Field Service Business) provides before and after a customer buys or uses your products or services.
Now that we got that out of the way, let’s dive back into our 4 key strategies. The idea of presenting these strategies for Tradespeople like you is to help you innovate, grow and evolve in the Field Service Industry.
Here are the 4 key strategies to focus on:
1. Pay Attention to Details
Whether you sell a product or provide a service, paying attention to the details is the first and foremost strategy that you need to implement.
From the time you enter your customer’s property till you leave, you are under the customer service experience radar.
Here are a few tips for you:
- Show up on time
- Pay attention to what you wear
- Organise your service process
You and your Field Technicians represent your brand and service business. This means it is important to appear respectable and professional when providing the services.
Creating great impressions will help build a reliable relationship between you and your customer!
To be honest, as a tradesperson you are surrounded by dirt and dust when you provide a service. Whether it’s just rewiring or fixing plumbing issues. The process of providing the service is a bit messy.
Take the time to minimise the mess and organise your tools when delivering the service. You can invest in organising tools to create a more professional service delivery.
By paying attention to the details, you can receive great customer feedback and reviews.
Customer feedback and reviews are a great way to continuously improve in the field. Also, you get the opportunity to showcase your great service on your social channels and website to attract more customers.
2. Provide Convenience
When a customer searches for a service, there are 3 things they are looking for:
Convenience…… Convenience……. And Convenience!
Is your Field Service Business convenient to your customers?
If you are still using manual Field Service Management processes, then it’s high time that you shift to digitalisation.
Investing your money in new and effective technology is worth it if you have a great strategy up your sleeve.
According to Mc Kinsey’s‘’How CEOs can win the new service game’’, there are four big trends that businesses should focus on if they intend to reinvent their business by improving customer services:
- Contactless operations
Now if we closely look at the trends, in terms of improving customer service, it speaks of high convenience.
During the pandemic, we experienced an accelerating shift in digitalisation. To meet customer expectations and demands, Tradespeople adopted a new approach to providing field services by utilising effective features from a Field Service Management software solution.
For instance, the i4T Business Lite and Pro platforms offer Tradespeople benefits such as enhancing mobility, using simple workflow management, managing cash flow management and providing easy payment methods encouraging contactless operations for customers.
Switching to an effective software solution can help you provide better customer service that meets all the trends in the market.
Increase business opportunity, growth and customer loyalty.
Further to that, customer interaction with digital channels has also accelerated during the pandemic strike, and it is continuing to grow.
Enabling channels such as:
- Virtual customer assistants
By doing so, you are providing your customers with a way to find it convenient to communicate freely and request your Trades Services easily.
Customers are evolving to digital experiences, thus this can help improve your customer service as well as your customer experience (CX).
In addition to digitalising your workforce and management, it is also crucial to provide the necessary training and guidance for your team. Your skilled Field Service Technicians can add value to your business when they know how to use simple tech features.
3. Meet Customer Expectations with Speed
Responding to your customers on time is a high priority for your business growth and customer service.
In a previous article,Stand out from the crowd! we asked you: Have you ever met a business owner that says “Customer service doesn’t matter”? you haven’t and you won’t because it is just expected – it’s what the crowd does.
Throughout your Field Service career, you would have experienced that no customer is patient enough to stay for a delayed response.
CMO report: The Customer in Context reveals that to improve customer service and customer experience (CX), responding quickly is crucial for business owners.
Studies suggest that customers would prefer the business to respond to their inquiries within 15 minutes.
In another study conducted by Bain & Company in 2005, most businesses assume that they meet customer expectations.
80% of them are confident that they deliver great customer service meeting their customer expectations. However, the reports reveal that only 8% of businesses delivered what they believed.
Hence, there is a delivery gap created.
The Bain & Company research found the following:
- Only 50% of businesses make sure to tailor their products or services according to the customer’s need
- Only 30% organise their management to deliver great Customer Service and Support (CSS) and CX.
- And only 30% respond to customer feedback.
Identifying the Delivery Gap in the Industry
Taking a closer look at the research, you as a tradesman can improve how you approach customer inquiries and manage the response time effectively.
First and foremost, it is important to identify what type of customer expectations are possible to meet with your business resources. Based on that you can plan a strategy to help improve customer service.
If you are using the i4T Business platform, you can respond to customer inquiries with instant quotations quickly within a few mins. This type of feature allows you to effectively respond to multiple customer inquiries without delays.
Whether you are dealing with new or recurring customers, you must maintain your customer service standards with good speed. From responding to quotations to scheduling, dispatching and sending invoices, your response time should satisfy your customers.
Speed is essential when you are trying to meet customer expectations. Hence, create a management structure and use Field Service Management software that can help you evolve with customer demands and expectations.
4. Emotional Fulfilment
Your relationship with your customers is important for your business to thrive. As a Tradesperson your service does not end after you fix a light bulb or immediately send an invoice.
While you focus on meeting your customer’s expectations and needs, you must take a look at how it will emotionally fulfil your customer.
Great customer service delivered will reflect when the customer is emotionally fulfilled with your services. Evaluate and analyse customer behaviour towards your social channels and identify how to create a bond with them.
According to the Mc Kinsey: The future of customer experience report, the two primary components of customer service are:
- Understand and anticipate customer needs
- Facilitate the development of customer profiles
Your social media platforms, websites and other communication channels can help shape your relationship with your customers with transparency.
Customers expect transparency, and if you are using customer service software that can provide transparency, security and compliance at every step of the process, then you and your business can benefit.
Customers will return to your services when they are satisfied. Some of the most important qualities a customer expects from a service business may include:
- Fast response
- Awareness and consistency in business channels
- Trained and skilled staff to help them with questions
- Clear and consistent communication
- Human experience
- Easy to find information tools
Benefits of Focusing on Improving your Customer Services
Many Tradespeople continue to explore and develop several strategies to evolve in the industry. By implementing these strategies, tradespeople can benefit from an:
- Increase in customer trust and loyalty
- Increase in digital interactions with customers
- Reduced costs
- Increase Revenue