Four Tips to Take Your Customer Service from Good to Great


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I’m always thinking about what goes into stellar customer service, due to my professional experience speaking with companies about their customer service goals and challenges. As a result, I’ve developed the following four customer service tips that every contact center should make a priority.

Tip #1: Be customer-centric. This seems obvious, but it’s surprisingly rare that companies actually do it. It also has less to do with adopting sophisticated technology than it does with a change in perspective and protocols. Imagine you’re a contact center for a company that just suffered a loss of service, which negatively impacted customers. How about sending your customers an email that takes responsibility for the issue, apologizes for it, and makes it right? And making it right could be a very small reimbursement that, trust me, will be repaid ten-fold in a vastly more loyal customer base.

Tip #2: Personalize it. Customers are fast becoming intolerant of doing repeat business with companies that still seem to have no insight into their buying or service history (think about being sold on a totally irrelevant product or service…ugh). To right this wrong it’s vital that your contact center routing system is integrated with your CRM and other back-end systems that house critical customer data. This enables reps to have a customer’s personal information at their finger-tips so they can more quickly and effectively address issues.

Tip #3: Respond fast. When something impacts a customer, the response must be immediate. Taking action in near real-time – especially in today’s Millennial-driven economy — shows a proactive approach that tells customers they are a priority (see Tip #1). It also eliminates the need for customers to spend more time finding out what, if anything, a company will do about the issue.

Tip #4: Embrace self-service. Sure, you still want to offer easy access to live assistance, but increasingly customers want the anytime/anywhere convenience of self-service. Just be sure when you design these systems you do so with the customer in mind. Survey them and find out what systems they would use and for what purpose. Before going live, test them with a beta group to ensure these systems contribute to a positive customer experience.

The above tips take some investment in the right technology, and often require a change in service culture and policy. However, it’s important to keep in mind that much can be done from little if a company is intentional about its customer engagement strategy.

Jason Alley
Jason Alley is a senior solutions marketing manager for Interactive Intelligence. Since his employment in 2010, Jason has helped Interactive Intelligence develop market requirements and go-to-market strategies for contact center, customer experience, and cloud solutions. Prior to Interactive, he spent ten years consulting with large enterprise contact centers and suppliers for Vanguard Communications, and a company he later founded, SmartContact Consulting. Jason spent the first seven years of his career in sales, marketing, and product management.


  1. Here is perhaps a fifth tip: Never underestimate the power of your customer base.
    Whether you do most of your business online or out of a brick and mortar location, customers are your most valuable asset…and their postings online or their word-of-mouth contacts can make or break your relationship with them.

  2. If customer service is exceptional then you sure have promising leads but truth to be told, we can’t guarantee good quality customer service 24/7/365. CSRs are also humans and they are bound to make mistakes. But there will always be a room for improvement.


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