As the manager of a customer service team, you'll have a lot of challenges to face.
You need to deliver incredible experiences for your clients in a time where customer experience (CX) is more crucial than ever, but you also need to keep your team engaged and efficient too.
It's no wonder that today's team leaders have unreasonable levels of pressure to deal with in the modern marketplace.
The good news is that if you know the common challenges, you're likely to face in the customer experience space, then you'll be better prepared to overcome them.
To help you drive the right outcomes for your team and business, we've put together a list of the 5 most common challenges for customer service managers, and what you can do about them.
#1 Keeping Employees Engaged and Happy
Customer service managers often assume that their top priority is the satisfaction of their customers.
While happy clients are crucial, it's important to remember that the engagement and satisfaction of your team members are essential too.
If your employees aren't having a positive experience at work, then they'll be less likely to deliver the high level of service that your consumers expect.
In a recent survey, around 71% of contact center directors cited system efficiencies as the top reason for their employee's workplace stress.
Involve your team members through surveys and questionnaires to find out exactly what stops them from achieving the best outcomes in their roles, then implement strategies to overcome those hurdles.
For instance, if your team is struggling to get used to a new tool or piece of software in your business, perhaps extra training would be useful.
#2 Not Having the Right Tools to Help Customers
Reducing the effort a customer needs to go through can enhance customer loyalty more significantly than anything else, according to the Harvard Business Review,
Today's consumers are constantly busy, dealing with one issue after another. These people want you to invest in the latest technology or tools to keep their transactions as simple and streamlined as possible.
Unfortunately, service reps don't seem to have the right tech to handle complicated consumer problems.
By far, the easiest way to overcome these issues for your team members is to find out exactly what solutions they need to drive better outcomes for your clients.
Assessing your workforce and finding the gaps and roadblocks in your strategies for customer success will ensure that you're investing your money into technology that can truly empower your staff.
#3 Maximizing Efficiency Through Education
Speaking of extra training, the best employees are often supported and driven by what they know and the information that they have access to.
In today's highly digital world, one of the best things that any customer representative can have is proficiency with the tools and software that define their roles.
If you're running a team of tech support agents, then it only makes sense for those people to know the tools that they're working with inside and out.
A tech support agent for an IT business, for instance, might need to know about various Windows operating system issues and how to keep it running at peak performance.
A knowledge base in your workplace that provides access to that kind of information can come in handy when your team members need to check up on an issue that they're not sure about so that they can more quickly serve a customer.
Ensuring that your people have access to the right information will reduce the risk that they'll have to hold their hands up and tell clients that they don't know how to solve their problems.
#4 Going Beyond Customer Expectations
One of the biggest challenges that today's customer service manager faces, is figuring out what their customer wants, and then going above and beyond to deliver that - along with something extra.
Customers aren't always as effective as they could be at explaining their issues and what they need.
Because of this, it's important for customer service managers to know how to talk to their customers and help their team members get to the bottom of common problems.
Teach your team members how to empathize with customers, while getting to the bottom of their issues one question at a time.
It may also be a good idea for people in your group to keep track of the more common problems that your customers face, so you can create your own personal FAQ for staff members to use.
The more you get to know your customers and their common issues, the easier it will be to deliver the resolutions they need as quickly as possible or even eliminate the problem altogether with new updates to your products or services.
#5 Knowing How to Speak to Customers
Finally, understanding your customers and their journey is just one part of the puzzle.
As a customer service manager, it's up to you to ensure that your reps can speak to your clients professionally and carefully - even during times of stress.
It's easy for clients to come to a rep ranting and raving when they're upset. However, your team members will need to remain professional throughout the entire process, which also means knowing when to apologize when the time is right.
Provide your team members with training seminars and sessions that build on their soft skills, like communication and listening.
As your team continues to learn and evolve, remember to gather as much feedback as possible from your customers to find out what they like about your service strategy, and what they would like you to improve.
This will help your business to keep moving in the right direction.
Exceed Your Customer's Expectations
In today's marketplace, a customer-centric approach is a key to success.
Ultimately, your customers expect an incredible experience during every interaction - and that means that you need to go above and beyond to understand what your community needs and figure out how to deliver.
Remember, there's more to excellent customer experience than just serving your consumers too - you'll also need to constantly support and empower your teams so that they're prepared to help clients more efficiently.