Companies should design services of high quality. Moreover, these services must be delivered with speed and efficiency. The employee delivering the services must be skilled and professionally trained in the respective business sector. Also, the overall attitude of the company should be friendly and transparent.
When clients ask for speed, high quality, and efficiency, companies that fail to deliver that level of customer service fail to perform as a proper business. As we have seen in the previous chapter, client satisfaction is linked to the success of a business. The employees fall right in between the customer’s satisfaction and the success of a business; they are actually the link between the two.
Companies are now challenged to get more involved in qualification training for their employees. In recent years, the standard training length for most industries was two weeks for any employee. These two weeks is actually part of a trial period of three months. When we think about the knowledge and skills that an employee can learn in two weeks’ time, we understand that we are barely scratching the surface of the information that the employee needs to do his job properly. Most companies send their employees directly to work after the two weeks of training; they also believe the employees will learn best on the job, learning from their own mistakes. What companies don’t realize is that employees’ mistakes can increase the dissatisfaction of customers.
Let’s imagine a situation. You are in a hurry to check out at a cash register, but the cashier is a new employee who is just starting to work after two weeks of training. During those two weeks, the new employee learned the basics of the job like safety procedures, cleaning, and the use of the software. Very few cashiers learn useful knowledge during training, like customer care skills, the company’s principles and perspective on consumer behavior, or professional skills like product codes, product organization, and store structure.
Therefore, the actual knowledge that the cashier needs to properly work and offer excellent customer service is not available to him yet. Some retail stores believe that the cashier will learn useful knowledge about the job in time, with experience. However, the clients expect the cashier to already know the product codes, an organization of products, and the store layout. This improper training then negatively affects customer satisfaction and puts the employee in a stressful environment.
Returning to our example, even though you are in a hurry, the cashier cannot work quickly and correctly because he doesn’t know how to. You, as the customer, are getting annoyed because it takes a long time to pay for the products and receive them, and the cashier becomes more and more stressed. If the cashier cannot deal well with stress, he might even make a mistake that requires even more time to solve. You get upset and, since you are in a hurry, maybe you even give up on buying the products and leave the store thinking that the employees are incompetent and the customer service was terrible.
We can see from our example that every little detail counts when it comes to pleasing the customers. Companies should dedicate more time and attention to employee training, regardless of the business sector, to avoid unpleasant situations and poor reviews from clients. Every day we can find examples as clients and as employees that show us how the customer’s requirements push for better employee training. Employees can perform better when their training is provided by experts and teaches customer care skills.
At present, companies are challenged to redesign their employee trainings. Customers also demand that companies hire the right persons for the job. In the heavy industries like food and tourism, most companies still choose quantity above quality. They hire many people to respond to increased consumer demands, but many of those people are not the right employees. The effects of quantity over quality are increased turnover of employees, unstable company budget and potential risk of business failure. Another challenge for companies is to encourage the specialization of their employees and to create a continuum between employee education and work. All these changes are necessary to keep up with the client’s demands and ensure excellent customer service.
One important point is that as customer demands increase, employment quality increases as well. Client service becomes more developed. When we look back, we can notice that the changes brought by customer service to employment happened from two perspectives: the managerial changes to employee requirements and the employee’s personal need for a change.