Written by Guest Author | November 10, 2014
It’s an easy job, this customer service recruitment lark. All that you need to do is find friendly people who are good with other people, and you’re set. What could go wrong?
Actually, quite a few things could go wrong, if you don’t take a more in-depth approach to picking out the right candidates. These guys are at the frontline of your company, after all.
Here are our tips for recruiting not just people, but the right people for your customer service team.
1. Hire people who are customer-centric
Your candidate needs to think in ways that are very much centred around the customer. Even if they’ve never previously worked in customer service, they will be able to see every interaction through the eyes of the customer.
Your next recruit in this area needs to be able to relate to your customers as human beings, and above all else, have a genuine interest in solving their problems.
2. Look for quality rather than consistency
Customers are used to dealing with customer service employees who are well-trained in consistent corporate-speak. They are rather less used to dealing with people who seem genuinely interested, intelligent and human.
Hire candidates who are true thinkers and problem solvers – people who are capable of doing away with the script and responding to customer issues in a natural, well-thought-out way.
3. Recruit brand evangelists
Does the person who you’re recruiting really care about your brand, and believe in its stated values? Perhaps they’ve previously used your products or talked about your brand in a positive way on social media?
There’s nothing quite as powerful in customer service recruitment as hiring people who are already loyal advocates of your brand. When your customer service employees are genuinely enthusiastic about your company, they’re so much more likely to gain the trust of customers.
4. Consider hiring internally
Who already knows your company, practically from top to bottom, and can also be depended on to give customers quick, but intelligent responses to their queries? Your own best people, of course.
Customer service is one area where it can really pay to hire internally. You’ll certainly have greater peace of mind, knowing that it’s your best existing employees who are on the frontline.
5. Seek those with executive maturity
We’re not just talking about hiring older people. We’re suggesting that you look for those who are skilled in dealing with ambiguity, uncertainty and pressure in their management of emotions and relationships.
People with executive maturity don’t merely have good customer service skills – they also have emotional maturity, and the associated level of self-control and awareness, that helps them to rise to those more difficult customer service challenges.
The right customer service is only increasing in importance as we enter the multi-channel age, so don’t get compromise your competitiveness with mediocre customer service employees.