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Is Customer Service a thing of the past

I did a search on Google for " is customer service dead" to see what kind of posts there were. Below is the link for the search. The results were absolutely stunning. Click on it and feel your jaw drop or your eyes widen.

http://www.google.com/search?q=is+customer+service+dead&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&aq=t&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&client=firefox-a

Over 18 million results found from it is dead, dying, a thing of the past, blog entries, complaints, threats and plain old bad service. What has happened in the past few years? Do companies really care about excellent service or does adequate service make the grade. Focusing on call centers, numbers are the name of the game there. From calls taken, to how long you talk to a customer, to how much time you spend after a call and different rating systems that review a handful of calls per month are the standard.

Here are some possible reasons for a decline and why this is a hot topic.

People are not trained properly. For call centers, you may have anywhere from two weeks to a month before you our on your own taking calls. If you are lucky you may sit near someone who can mentor and assist you through those rough first weeks where bad habits can sprout. It can be sink or swim. Also keep in mind a lot of this type of work is outsourced across the ocean.

Staff feels the product is overpriced or does not believe in it.

This is where communication between managers and supervisors come in either through staff meetings, individual meetings or more training. The employee has to believe this is a great service at a reasonable price. If they don't ,then they may be just collecting a paycheck.

Agents are tired of hearing the same complaints and problems over and over again.

If there are constant issues be it service, outage, deliveries, or billing then this is critical mass and management should start earning their salary and FIX IT.

Incentives and salary are not in line with the job.

Let's be honest, in this recession a lot of people would rather be doing something else than talking to 40 or more callers a day. All of these reasons may account for a high turnover in this industry ( as high as 50%). Having a hard to reach bonus plan or meager raises contribute to this factor.

These are some points of what is wrong with 21st century customer service.

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