Understanding the Power of Team Collaboration in Customer Service
Many factors are involved in creating an effective customer service strategy. The agents you hire, the support platform you use, and the internal resources you provide your team, can all have a significant impact on the level of service your customers receive. But while most business owners are aware of these major factors, there’s one that is often overlooked – team collaboration.
Enabling your team to collaborate on support tasks is one of the best ways to improve their abilities in providing fast and effective service. If you’re not yet doing so, keep reading to learn why allowing for collaboration is so important, as well as tips and tricks to help you get started.
Why is Team Collaboration Essential in Customer Service?
Customer service is a collaborative function. Not only do your support agents have to collaborate with each other to ensure faster, more accurate replies, they also have to maintain good relationships with cross-functional teams to get their help when needed. Let’s break down the nuances of collaboration in customer support and find out why it plays such a pivotal role.
It Requires Significant Cross-functional Communication
Let’s say a support agent is speaking to a customer who has a billing issue. Now, such problems cannot be resolved by the agent independently and require the finance team’s help. Therefore, it goes without saying that the agent should be able to quickly contact the finance team and offer a resolution to the customer in a timely manner. But to do this, efficient processes need to be set up to make inter-team collaboration as smooth as possible. Your employees need to be able to talk to each other easily over a team collaboration chat application, rather than frantically make phone calls or run to the other team’s desks.
It Prevents Duplication of Effort and Improves Productivity
Collaboration between support agents is also equally critical. For instance, in the same example discussed above, if the agent knows a teammate who was troubleshooting a similar issue earlier, he/she can simply reach out to them to find out who they should be talking to in the finance team, rather than spending too much time in needless back and forth conversations. Hence, you should encourage all your support agents to share their expertise with one another. This goes a long way in reducing duplication of effort, imbibing a sense of team spirit, and boosting individual agents’ productivity.
It Helps Remote Employees Stay Connected with their Colleagues
As remote work is gradually becoming the new normal, a lot of companies have hired remote support agents either full time or on a contractual basis. When your support team works from across the globe, it becomes extremely difficult for them to collaborate with stakeholders who do not work in the same timezone as theirs. By using the right combination of remote working tools such as Zoom and Freshdesk, your remote team can collaborate with other teams at a time that is convenient for both parties and share ownership of problems. It will also greatly benefit your remote workforce if service level agreements (SLAs) are managed keeping in mind the multiple time zones that are at play.
It Helps in Delivering Customer Delight
The best part about team collaboration is that it contributes to good results. Results that lead to happy customers and positive word of mouth.
When your team is working together seamlessly and hustling to get things done faster, it’ll make a positive impact on metrics such as customer satisfaction, first response time, average resolution time, and so on. Good service experiences will instil a feeling of trust in your customers, thereby encouraging them to continue their association with your brand.
5 Reasons Why Freshdesk is the Best Helpdesk for Team Collaboration
The first step in making collaboration a core part of your support strategy is to choose a platform that enables it. Although you could make do with email or another form of internal communication like Slack or Trello, these tools were not primarily built, for support and hence, aren’t the most efficient for that job, and only work as a short-term solution.
Freshdesk comes equipped with these advanced collaboration features out of the box to ensure hassle-free collaboration between cross-functional teams. Here’s a look at all of Freshdesk’s powerful collaboration capabilities and how they can help your team work together and engage in contextual conversations.
#1 Share Ownership of Tickets for Easy Inter-team Collaboration
Freshdesk allows you to share ownership of tickets with other teams without losing visibility or access to it. For instance, a frontline support rep can assign a ticket to internal teams like engineering or finance and still continue to be a co-owner. This ensures that other teams can work on the issue parallely, while keeping your support agent in the loop at all times. As a result, you don’t have to worry about any issue slipping through the cracks and focus on delivering customer delight with the most up-to-date information.
#2 Create Sub-tickets within a Ticket for Faster Troubleshooting
Freshdesk lets you resolve complex queries faster by splitting them into smaller sub-tasks that the concerned teams can work on in parallel. Such tickets are resolved only when every team completes the task that is assigned to them. This way, your support agents don’t feel overburdened that they have to collaborate with multiple stakeholders. It also means that you have a well-oiled system in place to handle problems that require extra effort.
#3 Club Similar Issues Together and Resolve them Quickly with Linked Tickets
There are times in customer support when your business sees a sudden surge in incoming ticket volume. This can be due to holiday rush, an error in your website, or other similar reasons. To keep your team better prepared for handling such situations, you can use Freshdesk’s linked tickets feature to combine similar issues together and send status updates on all related tickets in one go. Every agent who is involved in the ticket will have up-to-date information on the progress, ensuring consistency in customer replies and no miscommunication.
#4 Chat within the Ticket Thread using Freshconnect
Your support agents do not have to switch back and forth between multiple tools to copy-paste information and collaborate with their colleagues anymore. With the Freshdesk-Freshconnect integration, you can discuss problems and have important conversations regarding the issue right inside the ticket thread. Your agents will be able to contextually collaborate with other team members, and even external stakeholders from the same window. If you’re already using other team collaboration applications like Slack and Microsoft Teams, you can still integrate them effortlessly with Freshdesk and have information between the tools flowing in automatically.
#5 Simplify how your Support Desk Communicates with your Field Teams
If your business has field operations, then Freshdesk can make life a lot easier for you. With the native field service management module, field agents and helpdesk agents can easily collaborate with each other and respond to customers with full context. By creating service tasks, your support agents will be able to share customer addresses, phone numbers, issue history, and more with field technicians to improve the overall field service experience.
When your team is empowered to share information and assist one another, they can provide your customers with faster resolutions than ever. But enabling collaboration requires a bit more than merely encouraging your agents to contact each other with questions.
- First, you’ll need to choose a support platform that simplifies the collaboration process.
- Once you’ve chosen a platform, you’ll need to take an omnichannel approach, and have a streamlined process in place for assigning tickets.
- Then, you’ll want to actively foster a sense of teamwork within your team. Encourage agents to work together to find solutions, and to view helping customers as a collective goal.
When you make collaboration a key part of your service approach, you maximize the value of your team’s experience. But more than anything else, you can be sure that your customers are always receiving the best support possible.