National Customer Service Week is an annual event encouraging businesses to reflect on and encourage excellent customer service within their organisations. This year the week starts on the week commencing the 5th of October.
One of the ways that we have decided to mark the week this year is to sit down and catch up with our own in-house Customer Service Team, who not only support the wider team with client relations but are also responsible for instilling a high standard of customer care throughout our organisation.
What are the team actually responsible for?
Day to day the team has many responsibilities, and they can often find themselves tasked with everything from assisting a client with a simple query through to delivering a full training workshop for new starters at Dataplan.
Kay, our Customer Service Manager said “we continue to look after our clients making regular contact, looking at ways to improve services, and making sure Dataplan provide the best service, because only the best is good enough. We will also continue to support staff.”
Hayley, our Customer Service Professional, added that a new facet of their role is to “support the Project Managers with on-boarding of new clients, ensuring a seamless transition from their current payroll management to Dataplan.”
How did they adapt to continue delivering exceptional service throughout lockdown?
The UK wide Coronavirus lockdown challenged us all to find new ways of working, and for our Customer Service Team who are usually involved in regular on-site visits with clients this meant finding new ways to make our clients feel supported and connected.
During lockdown we felt it important to support not only our Clients but staff too. As people relocated and adjusted to “working from home” along with the introduction of an added service providing furlough calculations and CJRS claims for clients, we anticipated the volume of calls would increase dramatically. Our Customer Service Team supported all incoming calls offering clients reassurance and ensuring they were directed to the right source of information.. Kay described that “it was important for our customers to be reassured that it was business as usual. As a business Dataplan issued customers updates on all Covid-19 related changes once announced by the government and our Customer Service Team could assist with any questions regarding this which allowed staff to focus on the job in-hand. ” In addition to supporting calls the Customer Service Team continued to account manage clients with regular calls.
What is their background?
Our team have a wealth of experience from different backgrounds which they draw on to deliver exceptional service at Dataplan. Kay comes from the banking industry where she worked for over 35 years, whilst Hayley began her career at a holiday park with roles as a waitress and on reception before moving into banking for over 19 years.
What is different about working in the payroll outsourcing industry?
Whilst comparisons can be drawn between any client service role, and the goal should always be to deliver outstanding service, both Kay and Hayley identified some nuances that are somewhat unique to their time at Dataplan.
Kay says her day to day role is different and much more varied, whilst Hayley enjoys the benefits of working with a huge team but still enjoying a close bond with her team including “amazing support from the company directors and HR staff.”
What does great customer service mean to them?
At Dataplan our values are important to us and our people, as we explained in our blog post “Why corporate values are so important for Dataplan.” However, the ideas and insight of our people is always valuable which is why we decided to ask the people on the frontline themselves what great customer service means to them.
For Kay, this means “to ensure that rather than meeting a client’s expectations, we go above and beyond and exceed them.” She also thinks it is important to “listen and stay connected to the client, to deliver a personalised service and go out of the way to solve queries.”
Hayley believes that great customer service is achieved by “getting to know your client and understanding how they like to work.” She also thinks all customer service teams should have “great communication skills, enthusiasm, patience and knowledge” to deliver the very best service to their clients no matter what industry they are working in.