Customer experience is more than a buzzword, it’s an imperative.
As consumers increasingly self-educate long before becoming customers, their decision to buy (and keep buying) often comes down to the strength of your support team.
Given one negative customer service experience, more than 60 percent of consumers will abandon an intended purchase and flock to a competitor.
Whether your business ships physical products or provides essential software, driving a consistently positive customer experience is vital to thriving in a crowded marketplace.
The brands most poised to compete use quality assurance to help them do it.
What is Quality Assurance?
Also known as QA, quality assurance is the systematic process of making sure business results align with business goals.
In software engineering, quality assurance typically involves testing at every stage of development until a product is complete.
For support teams, quality assurance is a long-term play. Those who see the greatest gains account for every step of the customer experience and iterate as needed.
To unearth these insights:
- Choose a balanced sample of customer interactions to review
- Pay special attention to tickets on either side of the CSAT extreme
- Make note of what agents should start, stop, and continue
By the end of this process, you should have a sense of what makes an interaction good (or not good) given a range of circumstances.
You should also have some ideas about what agents can do to avoid negative interactions, particularly when a customer’s ideal outcome is out of support’s hands.
Establish service quality standards
Once you understand your support team’s strengths and weaknesses, it’s time to turn insights into expectations. What does good support look like—for the business and your team?
Armed with various customer service scenarios, your first step is to identify their corresponding customer outcomes.
Step two is defining which agent actions are most likely to move customers as close to their ideal outcome as possible. For instance, product issues and bugs may be beyond your team’s control, but how agents communicate this news can make all the difference.In situations like these, an ideal customer outcome might be: The customer is confident our team is doing everything we can to improve the problem as quickly as possible.
Here are some guiding questions to help craft your customer service credo:
- What kind of language should agents useto maximize empathy and effectiveness across all interactions?
- What tools and resources should agents exploitto help them serve customers more efficiently? Does the order of operations matter?
- What steps should agents taketo increase the odds of customers walking away with a positive impression of your company given an inconvenience or failure?