Highlights from FedEx and Comcast
by Susan Hash
Frontline Customer Care
Although the recession has taken a heavy toll on employee morale, the increasingly competitive environment has customers expecting an even higher standard of service. What can you do to motivate and enable your front line to strive for exceptional service on every interaction? Here's a quick look at FedEx's practices for cultivating a team of customer advocates.

Create a Culture of Service Excellence
A strong service culture should be aligned with customer-centric objectives. FedEx's "Purple Promise" proclaims that every employee will do his or her best to make every customer experience outstanding. The company's messaging, recognition programs and communications are all centered around supporting the customer — even paychecks, which state: "Delivering on The Purple Promise makes this paycheck possible."

Measure What Matters
Call center performance measures often create conflicting goals for frontline staff. Emphasizing metrics like average handle time sends a clear message to reps that call time is more important than resolving the customer's issue. FedEx focuses on first-call resolution by giving its reps the latitude to go beyond the call and be more preventative. It may cost more initially in increased AHT and training, but in the long run, eliminating repeat calls and customer frustration results in increased loyalty and revenue.

Share Key Information with CSRs
For reps to focus on problem prevention and customer advocates, they need to have a clear understanding of the company's goals and to be kept informed of its progress. FedEx shares with its reps a monthly scorecard on the company's performance, as well as a Service Quality Index that measures the customer's perception of the service they received through daily random outbound calls to customers.

Inside View — Comcast Digital Care
by Susan Hash
Comcast's Digital Care team actively reaches out to customers every day through blogs, forums and Twitter. There is no one-size-fits-all approach for social media — and a company's approach for engaging (or not engaging) customers should depend on the community dynamics of each venue. The first step is to define your reason for being there and your goals. For Comcast, "it was not about marketing or public relations," says Director Frank Eliason. "Our goals were to listen to customers and help when we could. It's that simple."
Read the full story here.


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