Managing Customer Service with Technology
Does your business get frequent inquiries? If so, it can be challenging to manage them all. Responsive customer service is key to your company’s success, so finding tools that can streamline the process is a smart business decision.
The most common solution to automating customer service inquiries is implementing a ticket management system or help desk software. A few important things to consider:
- How fast you can respond to a customer
- How well you solve the customer’s problem
- How to track a customer’s issue if it has to be open for a while before it’s solved
- How to do all of this in a cost-effective and efficient, yet friendly, manner
Inquiries often come from a variety of places:
- Phone calls and voicemails
- Text messages
- Website chat
- Snail mail
- Social media accounts and all platforms your business is on
- Posts, replies, and comments
- Direct messaging
- Any other contact methods you have set up in your social accounts
That’s a lot of communication channels to manage! When these channels can be fed into the same system, you can unify your client communications and take a massive step toward organizing all of the moving parts. A good ticketing system will accomplish this, and the feature you want is multi-channel accessibility.
Keeping your customer service costs low is another factor, and one way to accomplish this is to help users self-serve and solve their own issues when they can. This requires a robust knowledge base. A knowledge base contains a set of how-to articles and videos with the most frequently asked customer service questions.
Here are a few basic topics to consider including in your knowledge base:
- What forms of payment do you accept?
- What is your shipping policy?
- How can customers get help if they need it?
- What is your return/refund policy?
- What is your guarantee?
- How do you secure customer data?
- How can customers update their credit card/address/phone/email?
- Where do customers go to track their order status?
- What licenses does your business have?
- What are your hours?
- Do you have hours for seniors?
- How and where do customers log into their accounts?
- What are your COVID-19 policies for employees? For customers?
- Are you hiring and where should applicants go to apply?
A good ticket system will also have the ability to customize the ticket, the service rep assigned, the customer records, and the other important parts of the system. For example, you may want to set up your own status items for each ticket. Open, assigned, active, hold, and complete are typical statuses, but you may need additional statuses depending on your business.
The workflow must also be considered in a ticket system—how does a typical ticket flow through your business, and can the system replicate that flow?
Other important features of a ticket system include:
- Support for multiple languages
- Customer response to tickets, as well as the ability for customers to view the status of their tickets
- Uptime of system (service-level agreements)
- Tracking including the number of open tickets, tickets on hold, etc.
- Reporting metrics such as wait time, ticket servicing time, and number of tickets handled by each agent
- Ticket tagging and categorizing
- Feedback loop for suggested product improvements
- Ease of use for customers and agents
A few of the most popular ticket management systems include:
- Freshdesk or Freshservice by Freshworks
- Zoho Desk
- HubSpot Service Hub
- Salesforce Service Cloud
There are hundreds of technology options for every size of business. If you want to take your customer service to the next level or just want to get more organized, consider looking into these ticket systems.