Integrated Customer Service Strategy

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‘Customer service has become a lost art in our society.’ (Zimmerer and Scarborough, 2005). According to (Zimmerer and Scarborough, 2005) many companies today are rediscovering the fact that customer service is an essential part of doing business. Providing incomparable service and not necessarily low prices is one of the most effective ways to attract and maintain a growing customer base. According to (Robbins and Judge, 2007) most organizations today are trying to create a customer responsive culture because they recognize that this is the path to customer loyalty and long term profitability. This shows that sufficient research has been conducted on the importance of customer service in a business. (Zimmerer and Scarborough, 2005) stated that the least expensive and most effective way to achieve customer satisfaction is through friendly, personal service and that numerous surveys have concluded that the most important element of service is “the personal touch” which consists of calling customers by name, making attentive, friendly contact and truly caring for the customers.

In order to achieve perfection in customer service, a proper strategy that consists of many elements is required. Customer service can be achieve through a strategic integrated plan that consists of; listening to customers, defining superior service, setting of standards and performance measurement, examining company’s service cycle, hiring the right employees, training of employees, empowering employees, use of technology, rewarding superior service, managerial support and viewing customers as an investment.

Listen to Customers- Companies should listen and respond to the changing needs and expectation of customers in order to keep up in the business world. The best and easiest way to find out what customers really want is to ask them through surveys, focus groups, telephone interviews, comment cards, suggestion boxes, toll-free hotlines and regular one-on-one conversations....
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