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Moving towards the next phase of customer service in a post Covid-19 era

The global COVID-19 crisis is causing sudden and unprecedented disruption not only in India but even the rest of the world at large. It has been totally impossible to predict the total impact – but then these are turbulent and trying times, and dramatic action and resilience will be required to navigate this. It’s been around Six Months since people across the country have been locked up at their homes trying to figure out the ‘new normal’ , the new way of doing business, a new acronym that has found profound meaning – WFH aka Work From Home. On an average there are somewhere between 14 to 17 devices or electronic equipment inside a home. Just imagine the terror if one of the Geysers gets into a problem or imagine if the refrigerator develops a snag. This could easily send a cold sweat down your neck.

If this situation were to happen during few years BC (Before Coronavirus) the ecosystem was already in place to get the same rectified. Within a few clicks of the phone this would be sorted. The ever smiling engineer would come and visit your home, get a good look at your device and have it serviced and looking good as new. Well that was during before the pandemic rolled over our shores, No I don’t want to sound like a death knell author but as a harbinger of hope.

The Following would be the ways in which the teams would have to sensitise to the understanding that Customer Care would have to be based on the three most important tenets that I would like to propagate going forward.

  • Ctrl – Control Customer Experiences – In both the Carry-In space as well as the Onsite Space the Front Desk Engineer as well as the Onsite Engineer would be imperative for these two to keep the customer in control with respect to a) Awareness of the pandemic b) Ensuring that the customer is following the rules set forth by the Government in keeping themselves safe c) being proactive and providing faster solutions to the Customers Defects. D) Controlling the environment that the engineer is working in by ensuring social distancing e) Controlling the time taken to complete the activity either at the Customer premise or at the Carry-In centre.

  • Alt : Alternate Strategies to Quicken TAT Times – a) First Time Right b) Collection Point – where the customer doesn’t have to wait too long after depositing the defective device. The Defective item comes to a centralised repair facility where it gets repaired and sent back either to the Carry-In Outlet or it directly gets delivered to the Customers Premise c) Building smarter Tech so that the customer pain is identified at the call itself prompting the engineer to resolve the query within a shortest fastest time. d) Using a Remote Diagnostics Tool so that the troubleshooting is done over the air.

  • Delete – Deleting the Negativity – When the system has been stretched beyond limits as the situation that is currently in front of us there are bound to be errors which would lead to negative impulses which may take form of feedback. The Organisation can also do the following to keep the negative impulses at bay a) Ensure a level of preparedness b) Communicate, Communicate and More Communicate with the customer so that he is aware of his situation at the moment c) Ensure proper foresight and Planning of spares so that it is at each and every Service centre d) Maintain a proper Speed of Execution so that the customer doesn’t have to wait for so many days to get his device back.

    What the Customer Care Ecosystem needs currently is this ability to comeback following a Ctrl +Alt+ Delete which is called as a Soft reboot and use this to redefine the Customer offerings. The coronavirus pandemic has started a revolution on how multinational entities will strategically approach their business model going forward as they deal with day-to-day operations. This crisis has forced businesses to adapt in how they operate, manage their work force, adhere to governmental mandates, and react to customer and employee needs.

    We expect the world to look different post COVID-19 and while the short-term outlook might be gloomy, history shows markets and society can not only recover after a crisis, it comes back stronger.