If your company’s goal is to deliver an excellent Customer Experience, you must first embrace the concept of Internal Customer Service. What is happening on the inside of the organization will define the type of Customer Experience that is presented to the outside. The company culture must form a firm foundation for Customer Service. How well are you providing other departments with service, products or information to help them do their jobs? How well are you listening to and understanding their concerns? How well are you solving problems for each other to help your organization succeed?
Internal Customers must take pride in opportunities to help other departments look good. Helping others doesn’t mean you lose or that only one of you can win. In most cases helping other departments leads to a win-win situation. And what goes around usually comes around. Helping other departments succeed can help yours too when the roles are reversed.
What if your Internal Customers had a choice about doing business with you?
External customers can choose a company to do business with. Internal customers on the other hand cannot decide who they want to do business with inside the organization. Employees have to work together for the company to function.
So, what happens when an Internal Customer is not happy with the type of treatment that he or she receives? If the employee seeks a solution to the problem but it is not resolved, the only other choice may be leaving the organization, just as a customer who is unhappy with the customer service might decide to do business with a competitor. An unhappy internal employee may decide to go work for the competition – or any other company – if the opportunity arises.
Employees are drawn to other companies by the prospect of new positions that are more fulfilling and rewarding. How much time and money would your company save in the long run by having a low turnover rate?
To really walk your service talk, your commitment to Internal Customer service must match your company’s external focus on customer care. Good Internal Customer Service starts with good morale within your group. Are your people happy? Do they feel good about themselves and their contributions to the goals of the department and to the company at large? They should, and effort should be made to help them do so. Happy employees are productive, and customers take note. Happy employees are also better team players.
Well thought out training presents a prime opportunity to expand the knowledge base of employees. Effective Communication, Conflict/ Team Management / Customer Service among other customized trainings based on organizational needs are key in achieving a more positive, harmonius and skilled workforce.
They are more likely to feel valued if they are invested in and therefore,likely to stay motivated and focused on their jobs. Training and development is also as an additional company benefit. Recruitment costs go down due to staff retention.
Tips to help strengthen your organization’s Internal Customer service orientation.
1. Employees should never complain within earshot of customers.
2. Employees should never complain to customers about other department’s employees.
3. Employees at every level should strive to build bridges between departments.
4. Utilize post-mortems after joint projects so everyone can learn from the experience. You can mend fences and gain new understandings when everyone reviews what went right…or wrong
5. Let your employees become “Customer for a Day” to experience firsthand what your customers experience when doing business with you.