Monday, July 6, 2020

How to Keep Your Customers and Employees Happy and Safe Amid the Coronavirus Pandemic

COVID-19 has made many business operations much more complicated. As such, maintaining a proper customer experience can be difficult, to say the least. From adhering to new CDC recommendations to revamping your customer service to handle an influx of calls, juggling everything often feels overwhelming.

Thankfully, there are several ways to cater to your customers without compromising their safety or the well-being of any of your employees. All it takes is a bit of careful planning and some extra supplies.

Consider supplying face masks.

Like many United States entrepreneurs, you're likely encouraging your customers to wear face masks when they're in your store. A mask is a great tool to prevent the spread of germs and help flatten the curve. However, not all customers have access to a cloth face mask or cloth face cover. To encourage traffic to meet your business needs while also staying safe, you could consider providing complimentary face masks to those who are without. If it's one of your business's hard-and-fast rules, you can place a mask bin at the front of the shop and even leave another for customers to dispose of any single-use personal protective equipment (PPE).
As far as your employees go, consider providing them with custom face masks as part of their uniform. Your custom cloth mask can even have business branding on it to maintain increased visibility. You won't want your custom face masks to be as restrictive as a surgical mask, but they shouldn't be a one-time use mask either. If you have a washing machine on-site or nearby, you can also offer to wash the custom face masks on a daily basis. Happier employees often translate to better customer interactions. And above all, you want to make sure your employees feel safe.

Rethink your call center.

If you're not operating an omni channel call center, you're probably struggling to keep up with the heightened customer demands. If you want to increase customer loyalty, having omnichannel customer support can provide critical assistance. Whether you have a mobile app that collects customer data and can send text messages or phone calls or you use an omnichannel contact center solution that relies on artificial intelligence, live chat, and self-service options, having a contact center in place is critical. Your contact center can even extend to your social media channels.
Basically, the more digital channels you use, the better. An omnichannel approach allows your customers to contact you on their channel of choice. It's a simple way to boost customer satisfaction and increase points of contact.

Discuss workforce optimization.

Part of the customer journey is how all the pieces of your business mesh together. Customer journey management isn't as simple of a concept as it may sound, though. Leveraging an omnichannel approach is one part of a much larger puzzle. Workforce optimization can help you operate with limited staffing, reduced hours, or unpredictable weekly schedules. By optimizing and streamlining some of your key business processes, you're able to cater to customer demands much more quickly and effectively.

In the face of COVID-19, this may mean bundling inventory shipments to account for delays in your supply chain. Instead of multiple deliveries a week, you may want to select a single delivery day to attempt to get as much stock in as possible in one fell swoop. As far as employee management goes, you can consider training employees to be able to handle different functions throughout your business. A more well-rounded employee can accomplish more during each shift than a skeleton crew comprised of several individuals at different times.

Though the coronavirus pandemic persists, it doesn't have to dampen your customer service efforts and sales processes. You simply need to be flexible to pivot accordingly to ensure you're following safety standards, maintaining relationships, and pursuing continued growth.

1 comment:

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