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supply chain customer service

Supply Chain Customer Experience: 10 Tips to Improve Customer Service

As e-commerce continues to grow, consumers have access to an increasing amount of options and choices in just about every spectrum. They can order groceries online and have them brought to the car or delivered outright. Amazon continues to push the customer service envelope with faster and more accurate deliveries, allowing customers to order just about anything they could need and have it delivered to wherever suits them best. 

It’s not just consumers that have more choices, however. The logistics industry is growing at such a rapid pace that newcomers and startups alike are gaining a competitive foothold. Carriers, freight brokers, and 3PLs each provide a shipper with numerous options for improving their overall logistics capabilities. 

Customer Service is a Differentiator

Traditionally, a well-established company could simply rely on its reputation to coast through any upstarts. However, that time is changing, and quickly. New companies are bringing fresh insights and innovations into the logistics industry, and what was formerly the status quo is falling to the wayside. Ultimately, it will come down to one key differentiator: how the customer is treated. 

Poor customer service can severely hinder a logistics company from being able to find and, more importantly, retain clients. And given that we live in an interconnected era of technology, a poor experience can travel at the speed of Twitter. Conversely, an excellent customer service reputation can make all the difference when it comes to distinguishing your company from the competition. Here are ten tips to consider when looking to bring your customer service to the next level. 

Ten Tips to improving customer service

Communication is key to building trust: Communication and trust go hand-in-hand. When customers receive notifications and pertinent information in a timely manner, it helps to establish and deepen trust with a service provider. This is especially true if the information may be less than positive, such as a delay in a process or delivery. By promptly receiving this information, a shipper can communicate with their customers about the impending delay, which minimizes the overall impact throughout the supply chain. 

Now is best: As the adage goes, “time is money,” which is especially true of logistics. As consumers have grown accustomed to expedient deliveries, increasing the speed at which a client receives anything, be it shipments, information, quotes, or answers, will go a long way towards improving overall service levels. 

Reduce Customer touchpoints: When a customer is looking for a solution to a particular problem, they want to speak with one person and come away with a solution. When a customer has to bounce from one representative to the next, every touchpoint reduces the overall experience and satisfaction. Inter-department collaboration and communication are essential to good service.

Adopt strong training and learning processes: The logistics industry is constantly changing. What was best practice today might be obsolete by next week. Worse yet, outdated information can lead to a customer making a poor business decision. Therefore, it is crucial to create a training system that provides access to updated information to team members and reps who need it. Daily or weekly team meetings can help present and share new information with relevant team members.

Multiple methods of communication: It is frequently becoming the case where a phone call or a lengthy email chain simply isn’t the most efficient means of communication. Fortunately, there are many ways of giving a customer the means of reaching out to the support they need. Providing multiple options allows them to choose which best suits their needs and preferences. 

Streamline Interoffice communications: Between tracking down a specific message in an email chain or remembering which conversation thread in Slack to go to, information often gets lost. In addition to looking unprofessional, a customer is often left waiting for information to be found and a solution provided. By streamlining these communications, teams can quickly find their information and quickly develop a solution. 

Honesty is always the best policy: Good, bad, or ugly; your clients deserve to know the truth. While it might not always be a pleasant conversation, they’ll be happier knowing when it’s all said and done. This also applies to not having an immediate solution. Most customers will appreciate the admission, so long as it’s followed up with a promise to find the correct answer quickly. 

Make them stand out: Regardless of the industry, it always feels good to be treated as an individual. In a B2B situation, customers like to know that they aren’t just another number and that their business is vital to your organization. Going above and beyond can create a memorable experience for your customers that will keep them coming back for more. 

Streamline the interface: There is nothing worse than dealing with a clunky UI. It can turn a routine interaction into a frustrating experience or worse. Ensure that your website, digital platforms, and other software are user-friendly and easily accessible for your customers. 

Implement a Collaborative TMS system: One of the best means for improving overall customer service is implementing a system designed to increase the overall cooperation between organizations. A collaborative TMS goes above and beyond the functionality of a transportation management system and increases the speed and ease of sharing information between two organizations. 

Turvo takes collaboration and customer service to the next level

When it comes to collaboration, your organization needs Turvo. Built on the concept of unity and maximum efficiency, Turvo is designed to harmonize all internal and external systems to create one end-to-end platform. This helps eliminate redundant tasks and automate essential business functions, improving the cooperation between shippers, 3PLs, and freight brokers. Contact us today to learn more about how Turvo can improve your customer service offerings and take your collaboration to the next level. 

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