Managing your customers’ expectations in the field can be daunting, especially if there’s a risk of not meeting them due to unforeseen circumstances. But providing this service is quickly becoming a standard part of the customer package.
Whether it’s letting a customer track their engineer’s ETA or informing them that their engineer won’t be able to make it at all, the advantages of carefully setting your customers’ expectations far outweigh the risks. So why is it that businesses that already do this don’t have to rely on dangling incentives or implementing harsh punishments to ensure their staff provide the best service possible?
Here are just a few reasons why...
Let staff be their own boss
Making your field staff accountable to the customer may seem like a drastic step. But giving them the added responsibility shows trust on the part of the business and allows for true autonomy (that’s part of the reason they took the job!) Empowering customer-facing service personnel to be directly accountable really plays to the strengths of the mobile worker mentality.
In any case, good staff want to do a good job and by providing field staff with the ability to set the customer’s expectations ensures that a ‘good job’ includes good timekeeping and communication which, in turn promotes good customer feedback.
Refuse to be a scapegoat
Managers are easy targets for field staff. When staff have turned up late or missed a customer visit, the customer dissatisfaction is reported back to management whose own displeasure is easily shrugged off by staff. Managers in these cases are essentially acting as buffers between staff and customers.
By enabling field staff accountability directly to a customer any dissatisfaction becomes more personal and is harder to ignore. The manager (and scapegoat!) is removed from the situation and customer satisfaction becomes a priority on the ground as well as in the boardroom.
Get with the times
We feel more secure in the knowledge that our services are going to be delivered, we don’t even mind when they’re delayed as long as our expectations are met and it’s time field service operations caught up!
Although historically setting customer expectations within the field services industry has been hard to leverage, giving customers clear and measurable expectations has now become significantly easier with accessibility to mobile / location data.
Don't miss the cross-sell
Field technicians have a unique opportunity to engage with and interact with customers. Of course they have a job to do and if they are there to repair something or restore service then that should be their priority. But don't miss the opportunity to give your field technicians a more rounded view of the customer and their contact points with the organisation. For example they might be about to visit a customer and you could warn the technician in advance of a recent customer complaint, or the fact that the customer hasn't paid a recent bill and would benefit from a reminder. You might be able to cross-sell other products and services if appropriate.
Sound too good to be true? That couldn’t be further from the truth.
Get On My Way
Leadent Digital is unique in having such a deep field operations transformation heritage alongside a love of technology and customer experience. We use this insight every day to produce digital applications that customers love. Applications that help customers receive a more seamless, next generation service experience. Applications that give customers control over how they book their appointments and that use the power of merged reality to bring instant help to customers and technicians.
We built On My Way to allow customers to see all the information they need to know about their planned service appointment. This includes appointment address, time and delivery window, technician name and their badge ID and photograph alongside the real-time location of the service engineer shown graphically on a live map.
On My Way also lets you get direct feedback from customers who have used the service. This feedback is taken during the service transaction itself, whilst the customer is viewing and interacting with On My Way and waiting for their service engineer to arrive.
Why not take a look and speak to us for more information.