When we visit a business, we generally rate the level of service based on that which was provided by the person we predominately interacted with. This may be a salesperson, shop assistant, waiter or service attendant depending on the nature of the business.
Our overall experience however, is influenced by every representative of the business who we encounter along the way. These are people in positions who seemingly play minor roles, hovering on the sidelines or acting as the support crew. Although our contact with these people may be fleeting, they can either add or detract from an experience turning a positive one into a negative in an instant.
One such role is security personnel. Security staff can be the very first point of contact, as well as the last person a customer encounters when visiting a business and we all know how important first and last impressions are. Although they may have minimal connection to the business itself, rather external contractors hired to provide a security presence, if this person is unsmiling, unfriendly or worse rude or abrupt, this can have a detrimental impact to an otherwise pleasant experience.
Delivery drivers can also be the positive or negative icing on the customer experience cake. A friendly, knowledgeable, helpful salesperson has masterfully sold a new television or lounge suite to a customer who is excited about the delivery of their new purchase only to have their excitement shattered due to the sloppy looking, disinterested delivery person who clumsily unloaded the goods and refused to take the packaging away.
Receptionists are another example an important point of contact for clients or customers, responsible for the welcome and farewell to an office, as well other administration tasks. They play a pivotal role in the experience a customer has when utilising any of the professional services, with their demeanour, efficiency and presentation all contributing to a customer’s perception.
Other representatives that have the power to influence a customer’s experience include; installers, service technicians, door greeters, cashiers and ushers.
It is not uncommon for these types of positions to be filled by contractors or temp staff, unaware of the business’s expectations or standards on how to serve customers. Even when these roles are filled internally, they are often overlooked when it comes to the provision of customer service training, yet these roles can have an enormous impact on a customer’s overall experience and therefore, the service reputation of the business.