Bianca Angelico, Chief DayMaker, On Verve
Bianca Angelico shares five daily themes that guest services firm On Verve are following to celebrate National Customer Service Week (3-7 October 2022).
Monday: The Human-Tech interface
We still have not cracked the code of the human-tech interface relationship. As technology is being brought in to assist customer service teams, the integration hasn’t always been smooth sailing. However, giving my team the tools they need to fulfil their role to a high standard is essential. At one client site, a clear desk policy is used in the office, meaning any belongings that workers leave behind are taken to lost property.
The technology helps us to identify who was sat where and at what day, to keep people’s belongings organised and safe, whereas the human touch comes from the DayMaker at the front desk team who reaches out to the colleague in question to let them know how to receive their belongings. No one enjoys the automated experience that comes with technology, which is usually cold and unhelpful, so tech-led operations in customer service isn’t the answer quite yet.
Tuesday: Service with Respect Day
Whilst service with respect is extremely important, it is equally important to remember that our customer service teams are still human beings themselves. So, whilst they need to deliver their service with a positive attitude and with the needs of the customer at heart, there shouldn’t need to be a sign next to them that reads “remember to be kind”.
DayMakers are trained to be able to deal with hostility from those that they serve and remember not to take things personally. At the end of the day, some people just love to hate, and we can’t avoid them. The best thing I can do as an employer is prepare my staff as best as possible to handle those situations with professionalism, remain calm and ask for support from their manager if necessary. Our model remains as service with enthusiasm, as we believe having a readiness to help is the priority.
Wednesday: The Professionalisation of Service: Skills & Capabilities
At On Verve, we are very people-oriented in our recruitment. When regarding the professionalisation of service, usually it is clear to choose a candidate who has had experience in customer service roles, especially for more ‘luxury’ clientele. However, we believe that skills and professionalism can be taught through training, therefore deeming experience unnecessary. We want individuals that have the passion for customer service, and the determination to learn and create an amazing experience for our guests and become a true DayMaker. Funnily enough, some of the most committed and eloquent team members that we have are those that have come to up with no experience, but their spirit for the job was all they needed, we provided the rest.
Thursday: Effective Strategy and Leadership
Being prepared for all inevitabilities as a customer service provider is a large part of your daily strategy. That’s why, beyond the necessary training and development we give to our team, we also give them voluntary opportunities for growth. For example, we offered all our team members the opportunity to train as a mental health first aider, to help themselves, their team, and boost their own personal credentials.
The course had a positive uptake from the On Verve team, so much so that there is, on average, at least one mental health first aider on each team at the different sites we operate at. This therefore means all teams have a trained professional to turn to if something at work has upset them, or if they require general support.
This year we are collaborating with our clients. Each of our client is nominating a DayMaker in their team to be recognised for outstanding customer service. We wanted our clients to be part of this week and help us celebrate their amazing team that is delivering exceptional experience that is bringing the energy to their workplace.
Our clients love to see that we are doing this and that they are part of it!