Today, perhaps more than ever, service and support departments are at the forefront of a company’s success. Customer success depends on synergizing customer service representatives with the rest of the company. Generating valuable customer data is integral to this process.
A customer relationship management system, or CRM, with unique and dedicated service and support features, helps guarantee the customer’s experience is amazing at every brand touchpoint.
CRM for customer service?
While software dedicated solely to customer service and support (CSS) does exist, service customer relationship software integrates CSS functions holistically—not as something tacked on at the end, but working with marketing and sales at every stage of the customer experience.
Better customer interaction translates to more returning customers. In other words, we should stop thinking of a one-way funnel, and visualize more of a circular journey—after great service experience, a customer is primed to resume shopping.
Contacting support can at times be frustrating: having to ID yourself and explain your issue only to be put on hold or transferred and asked to repeat everything all over again.
A service CRM system avoids these issues by providing service and support staff instant access to all relevant customer touch-point information. This means not only less frustration but also faster resolutions.
How a service CRM works
So what are some of the key elements of service CRM? Firstly, information about the customer is captured by every department in the customer relationship management ecosystem so that it is accessible by the service reps.
Customers can contact support through all channels: phone, email, online forms, chatting and social media.
Once a customer reaches out, a “ticket” is created. This contains the customer details, the nature of the complaint, and suggestions to whom the ticket should go to, for example, problems logging into an account might go to IT; problems with delivery would go to shipping.
It might include details about the service-level agreement (SLA), which makes both rep and customer aware of what to expect regarding how long it might take for the issue to be addressed and resolved.
A “workflow” organizes and automates the various steps toward resolution. Like, if the customer wants to return a broken item, workflows should trigger a task to inventory and shipping to promptly mail out a replacement.
At a later stage, customer service software can gather feedback about their service experience, which further boosts support quality for every future ticket.