It’s one of my favorite times of year…time for us to get ‘United through Service,’ which is this year’s theme for National Customer Service Week, according to the International Customer Service Association.
National Customer Service Week (NCSW), held October 7-11 in 2013, is designed to raise awareness of customer service and the vital role it plays within an organization. It is also an opportunity to say thank you to those who work in customer service for a job well done.
Organizations take part in NCSW by hosting events in their workplace. These events can be large or small, serious or fun, they can be held all through the week or just on one day…. It's up to each organization to decide how to celebrate.
Many organizations use this week as an opportunity to provide training and refocus the efforts of their staff on the needs of their customers. In IT, a common misconception is that the Service Desk is responsible for customer satisfaction because of its role as single point of contact. However, every team in IT is part of the value network that, in the end, creates value for customers.
Celebrating National Customer Service Week doesn’t have to cost a lot. For example:
· Begin each meeting or training class with a review of team goals and how they contribute to customer satisfaction.
· Celebrate achievements such as an increase in your customer satisfaction rating.
· Send a daily email with positive customer feedback or inspiring customer-related quotes.
· Offer a “lunch and learn” series focused on the soft skills needed to deliver excellent service such as listening skills, communication skills and customer service skills.
· Launch a project aimed at creating better relationships between your Service Desk and second- and third-line service providers by creating Operational Level Agreements (OLAs) that clearly spell out roles and responsibilities.
· Review your policies and processes and ensure they are not standing in the way of excellent customer service. Begin with a review of recent customer satisfaction surveys or complaints to ensure changes fully address your customers’ needs and expectations.Best practice frameworks such as ITIL® and ISO/IEC 20000 are aimed at ensuring the focus always stays on customer needs and expectations. In fact, customer satisfaction by definition is “the difference between how a customer expects to be treated and how the customer perceives he or she was treated. Achieving high customer satisfaction begins with understanding customer requirements and determining how best to manage expectations in terms of the level of service that can be delivered.
Our CustomerService Excellence for the Service Desk Professional course is one way that we can help organizations learn more about these frameworks and standards in the context of customer service and to also reinforce essential customer service and support skills needed to enhance productivity, effectiveness and increase customer satisfaction.
So get ready to celebrate! National Customer Service Week is only a few days away.