Customer success is more than customer satisfaction. It is going above and beyond for your customers to guarantee they achieve their desired results, whether that be a one-time fix or–hopefully–a customer relationship that spans decades.
Either way, customer success does not just happen. It is something you have to cultivate through every interaction.
In this article, you will learn four field service shifts you can make that will increase the long-term success of your customers and help you grow your business.
Improve Your Customer-Technician Relationship
Your technicians are the face of your company. And how they interact with your customers will ultimately determine the relationship's success.
That means that no matter how much you have perfected your operations from a numbers standpoint, it does not matter if your technicians cannot build a rapport and deliver a stellar customer experience.
So, how can your business better support the technician-customer relationship?
For starters, you can focus on improving your pre-service communication.
You do not want to put your customer on the schedule and never check back until the technician shows up at their door. Instead, you need to communicate with your customers early and often to foster a positive relationship before the technician arrives.
When you set up notifications and alerts for appointment reminders and estimated time of arrival updates, you make your customer feel valued—and a little appreciation goes a long way.
Thoughtful pre-service communication ensures your technicians do not show up to frustrated customers before they even have a chance to demonstrate their expertise.
Introduce Supportive Technology
Over 65% of people have higher service expectations than they did five years ago.
Today, customer expectations can only be met with the help of technology, especially if you want to scale.
You have to be willing to introduce technology that supports your customer experience without pulling away time and focus from your service technicians.
For example, some customers prefer to find answers for themselves instead of utilizing customer support. So, an option like a customer portal elevates your customer experience and saves your team time—reducing time-consuming tasks like customer support phone calls.
Moreover, you want your technicians to have access to all customer records while on the road. Technicians need to be able to handle tasks such as updating job details, sending estimates and invoices, and collecting payments without needing to go into the office.
The right technology saves you time on routine tasks so that you can speed up your response times and dispatch technicians more quickly and efficiently to serve more customers.
Mentor Your Novice Technicians
There is no denying that finding and maintaining field service talent is a challenge. Currently, more field service professionals are leaving the field than there are entering to replace them.
That means you have to commit to mentoring the fresh talent that you do have so that they can become the new experts.
One way to ensure successful mentorship is to carefully match your technicians’ skill sets to their assigned jobs so that they never feel like they are in over their heads without the training they need. Then, incrementally provide them with the training and experience required to continue to build their professional skills and take on larger, more complex project types.
When you ensure your technicians have the skills, training, and resources to be successful at every job they are assigned, you boost their confidence. And they, in turn, provide superior service to your customers.
After all, if you invest in your technicians’ continued success, they are more likely to invest in yours—meaning they help you cultivate loyal customer relationships.
Value Your Loyal Customers
Businesses often treat new customers with more care than recurring customers. For example, they offer incentives like first-time discounts and faster appointment times for delivery and installation.
But in reality, the better mission would be to retain more of your existing customers.
Research says loyal customers spend 67% more than new customers. So even a 5% increase in retention can boost revenue by 25%. That is why businesses need to adopt a culture of supporting ongoing customer success.
For example, if you sell HVAC equipment, how can you follow up with that customer after delivery and installation?
Businesses that are committed to ongoing customer success have a plan in place to provide support and service for the lifetime of the equipment through things like predictive maintenance reporting and warranty tracking.
Remember, investing in an asset is a big deal to your customer. So, if you demonstrate that you care enough to help them get the most out of their investment, you will gain a customer for life.
Place Reputation Above Revenue
A business depends on revenue, but getting too caught up in maximizing revenue at the expense of your customer experience will cap your growth potential.
At the end of the day, your reputation means everything in the service business. Customers are looking for businesses that do the right thing, even if it is not the most profitable.
That means the business does its best to make it right when the inevitable hiccup occurs.
When you put customer success at the center of everything you do, it creates a flywheel effect. Their success encourages them to spread the word about your business and leads to increased referrals and overall revenue—and the cycle continues to propel itself. Consequently, customer success is the ultimate growth lever.
This post was inspired by Zuper FM’s Investing in Field Service Technology with Kellan Carter. Listen here now.