Checklists are awesome! They have a huge effect on productivity and performance. When you use them, the chances of forgetting the key details of the workflow are minimal. By relying on them, you always know the steps, follow the steps and therefore nothing is missed.
Your customer service team can also benefit a lot from a checklist to maintain order and consistency in everyday tasks. It may even achieve perfection of service delivery if it adheres to the rules & principles therein.
Similarly, a customer service checklist can also prove handy for managers and supervisors when it comes to evaluating agents and current customer practices. They can rely on it to set new goals, lay down core performance principles, and aim for the best-in-class service!
In this blog, we will discuss the customer service checklist template and its utility in terms of adding value to service delivery.
What is a Customer Service Checklist?
A customer service checklist is a set of rules that a company follows to deliver customer service at various stages of the journey. It may vary from company to company, but typically includes all the steps and guidelines to resolving issues and improving customer experience with the product, service, or brand.
Having a customer service checklist template is akin to a ready-made template for assisting customers, addressing complaints, and evaluating a team’s performance. It can help your service team fix problems in tune with the set patterns.
Why Use a Customer Service Checklist Template?
Customer service is a highly specialized task. It has certain basic rules and etiquette that agents must follow to improve customer satisfaction. Service reps however do not always play by the book, so they occasionally make mistakes which results in a poor experience for customers.
A customer service quality assurance checklist is essential for a variety of reasons, including –
- Repeat the basics of the game – Delivering quality service is never about luck. Service reps not only need to be aware of the basics of the game but must also repeat them to achieve the service goal.
- Avoid mistakes with customer service – Not all service reps are created equal. While some may be good at the job, there will always be some who need the clearly laid out guidelines to avoid making customer service mistakes.
- Handle customers confidently – Your service team will feel confident when it has a clear set of directions to follow for customer service. This is how you can ensure consistent results with the service.
- Assess the performance of your team – A customer service checklist template makes it easy for managers to assess the performance against key metrics and understand the steps needed to improve the delivery.
The Complete Customer Service Quality Assurance Checklist For Great Support
Your customer service team would feel clueless if it did not have a template to follow. In that case, its performance would never be consistent in dealing with customers across various situations. Having a checklist can rectify that mistake and help your team solve your customers’ problems like a pro!
A quality assurance checklist for customer service can guide your team in offering responses and handling situations effectively.
- Make Sure It’s Easy To Contact Your Support Team
- Set Clear Customer Service Expectations
- Create an Accessible Knowledge Base Section
- Specify Your Availability to Customers
- Use Canned Responses for Common Questions
- Deploy Chatbots to Complement Your Support Team
- Know Your Products or Services Inside Out
- Focus on Boosting the Response Time
- Train Your Team to Keep Customers in the Loop
- Use Positive Language
- Give Emphasis on Building a Long-Term Relationship
- Make Customer Feedback Part of the Process
- Evaluate Customer Service Performance
- Make Follow-Up A Part of Customer Service Strategy
- Act Proactively
When you have the customer service standards checklist, you are sure your team will tick all the boxes and exceed customer expectations at every stage of the journey.
1. Make Sure It’s Easy To Contact Your Support Team
What is the purpose of having a support team when customers can’t reach them easily? And if your team too is not easily reachable, customers are going to feel frustrated.
The point is, if customers can’t reach your support team, how will you solve their problems? How will you understand customer pain points and offer the assistance they need?
The more customers face problems in reaching your support team, the more it shows the value of having the customer service audit checklist in place to get such basic things sorted out.
So, you should make sure customers don’t have to grind hard or send multiple emails before getting a response from you.
How to make your support team easily accessible?
- You can offer 24-hour phone support or use email or social media to help customers get in touch with your service team as and when they need it.
- Make customer support software such as live chat and chatbot part of your service mix to ease the accessibility for users.
2. Set Clear Customer Service Expectations
Customers indeed like to feel special when they reach out for assistance. But your business must ensure that everyone who approaches the service team gets a similar type of experience.
And when we talk about a similar type of experience, it means there has to be some consistency in your approach to customer service.
It would be wrong to dish out preferential treatment to some while ignoring others. You have to be consistent with service delivery, set clear customer service expectations, and then train the team to follow them.
So, you should ensure that customers are aware of the type of service you provide and your team is aware of the type of service it has to deliver. This can only happen when you have a customer service standards checklist in place for the team to follow.
How to set clear customer expectations?
- Have a customer service checklist so that your teams can understand its roles and duties towards customers.
- Be upfront with your customers, set realistic expectations, and be open about what you can do and fix.
3. Create an Accessible Knowledge Base Section
Not all customers are interested in contacting a service team for help. Some of them also like self-service as it spares them the inconvenience of waiting for responses.
In fact, 70% of customers now expect a company to have self-service applications on their website.
Self-service gives customers a lot of flexibility in terms of searching or finding information related to the product or service or any other thing per se.
To effectively cater to the customers looking for self-service options, you should think of including a detailed and intuitive knowledge base in your customer service process.
This will help you answer all frequently asked questions without even having to dedicate a team for the same.
Things to remember with a knowledge base
- Update the knowledge base information on a regular basis to meet the expectations of customers.
- Review your help center section and if possible, have a good mix of videos, images, how-to-do lists, and posts to serve a variety of needs effectively.
4. Specify Your Availability to Customers
When customers look for assistance, the last thing they would want is unavailable service reps. It can frustrate them big time. And this kind of situation when you look to reduce customer churn for your business.
Your available hours are something customers should be aware of. They should know when you are there for help, and when not.
It’s fine if you’re not able to provide a 24×7 service, but why put customers in the dark about your working hours? To avoid such situations, use a customer service quality assurance checklist and check whether or not everything is in the right order.
In addition, with tools like live chat and AI-powered chatbot, it is easy to be there all the time for help. They will make you available to meet in different time zones.
Why should customers know your working hours?
- This will save them the needless hassles of waiting for you when, in reality, you’re not meant to be available at those hours.
- You may have customers from different time zones and you can cater to them successfully only when your working hours are clearly specified.
5. Use Canned Responses for Common Questions
Having a knowledge base section is fine when customers wish to get served on their own. But what if they have some queries and expect quick responses at odd hours?
For such scenarios, you need to save canned responses for common queries which can help you be prompt at any time.
Before preparing such responses, it’s important to review all the most common questions that clients routinely ask. This will be like having a customer service checklist sample where you tick the boxes based on the steps done.
Once the answers are ready, you can either use them with live chat responses or save them in the customer service tool for reference at any time.
Things to remember with canned responses
- Your service team can send those responses to clients with some personalized touches as it makes them feel natural and not scripted.
- Seek inputs from all support team members and compile a list of the most frequently asked questions and their answers.
6. Deploy Chatbots to Complement Your Support Team
Customer support is quite a taxing job. Most agents hate it simply for the monotony of having to respond to the same questions over and again, on a daily basis.
Worse still, the nature of support jobs makes it hard for service reps to feel motivated for long or stay productive on a consistent basis.
This is where customer service chatbots or AI bots can help transform the way you deliver customer support. You can deploy them on the website or social media or email campaigns to redefine the meaning of support.
With bots, you are sure –
- They can be available round-the-clock
- They can handle several customers simultaneously
- They can save precious time for agents who can then focus on more complex queries
When a chatbot is part of your customer service strategy, your agents are complemented well which helps them provide the kind of value and attention customers often expect.
7. Know Your Products or Services Inside Out
A customer support team is only as effective as the product or service knowledge it possesses.
And if your team lacks knowledge, it will fail to do justice to the role, therefore, creating chances of bad customer service.
Worse still, service reps who are not up-to-date with various aspects of the product often fail to add value to customer experience.
Your focus therefore should always be on training the team on different features of the products or service so that they can handle customers confidently.
No customer service checklist template can help if your service team does not have adequate knowledge about the products or service.
How to boost your team’s product knowledge?
- Make your team go through product documentation to become familiar with every aspect therein.
- Encourage your service reps to test out your products and services to gain first-hand experience of your offers.
- Conduct regular product training and update product manuals on a consistent basis to help agents in need of knowledge.
8. Focus on Boosting the Response Time
Customers like quick responses. If your service team takes longer than usual to respond to queries, it might create a bad experience for customers.
Each member of your service team has to learn the value of quick responses so that a collective and collaborative effort could happen on that front.
It’s equally important to have a strategy in place to respond to customer inquiries. When there is a process for the response, it keeps the team organized and also boosts the response time.
Your team however would never be able to respond quickly if it did not have the right customer support tools at its disposal. It would fail to meet customer expectations if it did not follow the customer service checklist.
Live chat and artificial intelligence chatbots can help you deliver quick responses to customer queries.
9. Train Your Team to Keep Customers in the Loop
A communication gap can hugely affect the best of efforts in the delivery of customer service. Even when you provide great service and if you don’t involve customers in the whole process, it would fail to make an impact.
So, you should try to keep customers in the loop when it comes to offering service to them. And keeping them in the loop means –
- Keep them informed at every stage of the resolution process
- Give them a crystal-clear view of all your work into the resolution
- Specify a clear time-frame when their problem will be fixed
This collaborative approach to customer service is very effective and can help a lot in building customer relationships. When you follow these practices, it will ensure
- Customers won’t feel like being ignored
- Customer experience will improve manifold
10. Use Positive Language
More than 8 out of ten customers would stop doing business with a company after a bad customer service experience.
Clients have every reason to feel disappointed if there is some fault with your product or service. And you would add to their disappointment if you did not stay positive or use positive language.
More importantly, you owe to paying customers, and therefore not being professional with them might irk them big time. So, you must approach them with an upbeat mindset and attitude, no matter what the complexity of the problem is.
By using positive language, you may achieve various things, including –
- Always treat customers as king as avoid blaming them for the problem
- Focus more on the problem rather than shooting the messenger
- Show respect to customer’s problem and be willing to resolve the issue at the earliest
- Don’t expect customers to be polite and rather play your part in solving their issues
Naturally, you need to train your team and have a customer service template that reps can use and understand how to use positive language in every situation.
11. Give Emphasis on Building a Long-Term Relationship
Customers won’t mind turning into advocates if they are happy and satisfied with your product, services, or support. In fact, meeting and exceeding customer expectations is always a powerful strategy to win brand loyalty.
In order to increase customer loyalty, you first have to give emphasis to building a long-term relationship. You need to find ways to give value to customers at every stage of the journey.
To build a long-term relationship with customers, you need to –
- Try to go above and beyond for your customers in every situation
- Go the extra mile to make them feel special or privileged
- Make sure you deliver great service for every issue they face
- Offer occasional gifts or rewards for association with your brand
Building relationships is a long-term goal and your service team needs to be trained on that.
12. Make Customer Feedback Part of the Process
Customers matter the most. You just can’t ignore them. And yes, every complaint ignored is 26 customers lost.
More importantly, their opinions, expectations, and preferences hold value more than anything else.
And if you’re not seeking their feedback, how would you understand what they expect from your business?
By seeking customer feedback, you not only value them but also make them feel more involved in the service process.
When you ask for feedback –
- Customers like it a lot and feel great at being cared
- They feel like their opinion is valued and heard
That apart, the feedback you regularly seek and receive could be an impetus to the positive changes to your different processes, products, and service standards.
How to seek customer feedback?
- Your service team can ask them directly without feeling any hesitation.
- Live chat could be a great tool to seek customer feedback right after the conversation is ended.
- An email survey, online forms, or social media channels can also be used for seeking customer feedback.
13. Evaluate Customer Service Performance
Even the best of customer service teams need a periodic assessment of their tasks. If you don’t evaluate your agents, how would you know their performance levels?
Evaluation is always key to understanding the kind of customer service your team is providing. It helps you know whether the service is adding value to customers or whether the team needs more training.
With a regular audit of customer service KPIs, you’d be in a better position to realize how your team is faring against key metrics.
Evaluation can help know about areas where your team needs improvement.
14. Make Follow-Up A Part of Customer Service Strategy
Do you know, 42% of people are likely to buy from a brand whose sales rep calls back at an agreed-upon time?
For most customers, getting help when needed the most matters a lot. And if your service team is able to help them in need, you’re sure to win them over for life.
And, maybe, that’s why follow-up holds a huge value in customer service. Businesses that do regular follow-up deliver value at each stage of the journey and create a personal connection with customers.
When your business follows up-
- It shows customers how much it cares.
- It gets an opportunity to understand and serve customers better.
- It finds it easy to convert leads and achieve happy customers.
15. Act Proactively
There is no match to being proactive when it comes to delivering customer service. If your team is able to anticipate clients’ needs and offer solutions before the expectations, it can win brand loyalists for sure.
Acting proactively should be a part of your customer service strategy. It’s about having the right tools and a mindset to deliver timely assistance.
If you’re able to solve problems before they become pain points, you have adopted the kind of proactive customer service approach often expected from brands.
This is how you move away from the reactive approach and add value to your service delivery.
How Can REVE Chat Complement Your Customer Service Checklist?
Your service team will need the right tools at their disposal to make the most out of the customer service checklist.
With REVE Chat, you get an AI-powered chatbot that can be deployed across channels for engaging with customers and seeking their feedback.
Using the bot, your service team can tick off many boxes easily, be it responding to routine questions quickly, staying available round-the-clock, or seeking feedback.
You can combine a live chatbot solution with the chatbot to deliver hybrid support and ensure value to customers at every stage of their journey.
The value of a checklist is huge in terms of keeping your customer service organized and orderly. It can ensure your service team has the rules in place to follow for every imaginable situation.
With REVE Chat, you can start a free trial of tools that can complement your customer service checklist template and get assurance of great service delivery.
So, the time is right when you take steps to strengthen your customer service process and win the trust of your target audience.