customer service

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Workbook 1

Understanding the Organisation

Communication
Products

Expectations

Organisations

Services

Policies
Level 2
Certificate in Customer Service Knowledge

Section 1: Understand the factors that affect an
organisation and the customer service role

These workbooks deal with the skills and knowledge that are needed in customer service roles. When working through the examples, activities and assessments, please base your answers on any of the following:

a
 customer service role you have in your current job
a
 customer service role from a previous job
an
 organisation that is familiar to you
an
 organisation that you have researched

Introduction to Customer Service
We all know when we have received bad customer service – when sales assistants are too busy chatting to serve us, when staff in a restaurant or store are rude and unfriendly, when the call centre puts us on hold for half an hour, or when our complaints are handled badly.

But what is good customer service?
Customers have expectations. They want an efficient and polite service before, during and after a transaction (buying or using products or services). They want good quality products and services, and they want any complaints and problems to be dealt with promptly and efficiently. They want their opinion to matter. Good customer service meets these expectations.

An organisation needs to offer good customer service at all times if it wants to survive and thrive. If the customers are satisfied with the products or services, they return and they recommend the organisation to others. Quite simply, this keeps the organisation alive and means that employees’ jobs are safer.



Customers’ expectations
are met and they are happy
with the product or service

 Customers come



The organisation’s
staff give good
customer service

© L4W 2012

The organisation
generates more
products and
services to cope
with demand



4



The organisation
employs more staff,
and trains them
well in customer
service

back and buy/
use the products
or services
again, and they
recommend
them to others

Section 1: Understand the factors that affect an
organisation and the customer service role

Different sector organisations
Please read the following as it will help you to answer questions 1 and 2. Products are things that are manufactured or produced – such as food, cars, magazines or furniture. A service is the action of helping or doing work for someone. Organisations are either in the commercial sector, the public sector or the third sector, and they may provide either products or services, or a mixture of both.

The commercial sector
This is often called the private sector. It includes organisations in the retail, hospitality, transport, finance, technology, manufacturing and leisure industries – e.g. shops, pubs, hotels, gyms, private bus companies, financial and legal services, factories and workshops. Some of these industries make products (such as furniture or food) and some of them offer services (such as fitness training or legal advice). Many businesses offer products and services – food cooked and served in cafes by staff, for example. The organisations can be small businesses with only one or two members of staff, or large multi-national companies that employ many thousands of people. In order to hold on to existing customers, and attract new ones, income must be generated in order for the business to survive.

The focus of customer service is on sales and after-sales service, supporting the customer before, during and after the purchase. For example, a small pub owned by a family provides products and services, and they take care of their customers: before – choosing the drinks and menus that their usual and new customers want; advertising and marketing the meals and drinks on offer in a way that pleases new and old customers; being polite on the telephone when taking...
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