Today’s customers are more demanding than ever.
They want what they want when they want it and how they want it.
If you don’t deliver, they won’t hesitate to bolt.
Once gone, the customer may never return, cutting your profitability.
To keep customers returning again and again and again, you must deliver great customer service.
To do it, you need to set goals for your support team, then create a plan to reach those goals.
Achieving these goals will help deliver the kind of support customers expect. Building customer loyalty and pumping up corporate profitability.
You need to set the right type of goals.
If you’re trying to improve customer satisfaction, for example, you need to set goals that address key service challenges, like having customers re-explain issues or having them spend too much time addressing an issue.
You can then set a goal to resolve the issue or issues quickly.
Setting goals boosts customer service in two ways.
If you’re trying to boost customer satisfaction, for example, you might send out a simple survey requesting customer feedback shortly after a transaction takes place.
The feedback from this survey is invaluable.
It helps you gauge the quality of service your team is providing. If customers aren’t happy with the service provided, you can set a team goal of boosting satisfaction and execute a plan to achieve that goal.
Team performance data can tell what’s working and what’s not working. (You can also tell who on your team is performing well and who isn’t.)
If you’re not achieving your support goal or goals, team performance data will help you identify potential issues you can address.
Tracking performance data will also help set a baseline for the quality of service you expect your team to deliver.
Ideally, you want to set customer service goals that leave no room for guessing. In other words, you want to set goals that are:
Setting goals help drive day-to-day interactions between team members and customers.
But you have to be careful when setting goals.
Making them too hard to reach has a negative effect, demotivating your team. Team members will quickly burn out trying to achieve them.
Setting goals that are too easy to reach, on the other hand, accomplishes the bare minimum or in some cases, nothing.
The other half is providing the tools your team needs to achieve the goals.
For example, if you want your team to seem knowledgeable when talking to customers, you need to provide the tools needed to boost responsiveness. Without these tools, your customer service team can’t achieve its goals.
Senior executive goals are broad and strategic. They align with crucial company objectives.
Managers’ goals are operationally inclined. They drive productivity and efficiency.
Customer service team’s goals, however, are customer-oriented. They focus on things like improving response time and boosting resolution rates.
Below are six tips that can help you create effective and measurable customer service goals that drive awesome customer service:
First, you need to determine your direction. What will success look like three months from now, six months, and one year from now?
Is anything holding you back right now from achieving them?
What opportunities out there do you want to explore? Think big here and be creative. You can break down these goals into milestones.
You want easily identifiable goals. That way you’ll know when you reach them.
Vague goals like becoming an industry leader don’t help.
Examples of good support goals are boosting first contact resolution rates by 20 percent, enhancing customer satisfaction rates by 30 percent, and increasing customer retention rates by 15 percent.
When you think about aligning support, and corporate goals imagine you and your team in a huge rowboat. If everyone’s goals align, your rowing will be in sync, and you’ll be heading in the same direction. If your goals aren’t aligned with the company’s goals, you’ll spin around all over the place.
Goal competition seldom works.
When you have too many customer service goals vying for time and attention, you cut your chances of attaining them. Having too many goals also demoralizes your team when they don’t show significant progress on behalf of each.
Pick one overriding goal like customer satisfaction and go with it.
Create intrinsic goals, not extrinsic ones.
Intrinsic goals are things like meaning and purpose, while extrinsic goals are things like money and new cars. Intrinsic goals make employees happier and motivate them to work hard to achieve them.
You want everyone on your team to know why you’re setting these goals and how they impact the company.
You need to take this one step further. Customer service goals need to be trackable and promotional.
Make sure you keep your goals visible.
That way people can see how much progress they’re making on reaching them. You can use things like digital dashboards, post-it notes, email, gauges, and so on.
Having created your customer service goals, make sure you review them regularly. That way you can see how much progress, or lack of progress, you’re making.
Goals shouldn’t be carved in stone. Instead, they’re adaptable and changeable. If your existing approach isn’t working, make changes. You want goals to drive you forward in the right direction.
Also, celebrate success. And do it together as a team.
Recognizing what your team achieves and how it achieves it keeps members motivated. Maybe you take everyone to a sumptuous meal at a fancy restaurant, or you go to a professional baseball or football game together on the company. Once you’ve celebrated your success, move on to the next target.
Use the six tips above to create specific, quantifiable goals for your customer service team. Align these goals with a key company objective, like customer satisfaction. Then develop a solid plan to help your team achieve them cost-effectively.
Setting goals drives your team forward and helps deliver awesome customer service—the kind that keeps today’s customers coming back again and again and again.