Many equipment rental business owners and managers understand the importance of keeping their customers happy and loyal. But many have trouble justifying the "expense" of customer service training because they don't fully comprehend its positive impact on ROI and have difficulty measuring it.
Today's customers are savvy. They expect quality, personable service, and they expect their equipment rental company to be knowledgeable about products and services. Most customers do not choose to do business with a company simply because of its price. They want a company that is going to anticipate their needs and values their business. They want to work with a company they are comfortable with and trust. Therefore, managers must work diligently to ensure their employees consistently not just meet but exceed their customers' expectations.
Excellent customer relations impacts all areas of your business. Understand the effects and positive impact of delighting your customers and train your employees to do just that, and you will see the return on your customer service training investment. The ROI will not only be in sales, but in employee retention and other areas that can have an impact on profitability. But knowing what to measure is often concerning to managers because a successful training program does not always show a definitive link to sales unless you know what variables to measure.
Knowing this can help show lasting positive changes in financial performance. The four most easily measured are:
Upselling and cross-selling
An employee of your company who provides excellent service always will ask the right questions to determine the customer's needs and get as much information as possible. A customer might not know all of the services and options available to him or her. This presents a great opportunity for the employee to sell other parts and services while offering the best solution for the customer. This will increase the transaction amount as well as showcase a knowledgeable staff member which the customer will appreciate.
With any piece of equipment that is rented, there is almost always a complementary piece of rental equipment or a supply that is appropriate. The mere suggestion by your employee can result in an increase in sales. If your organization also has a parts and/or service department, there are numerous opportunities to cross-sell. Make certain your customers know you are a full-service provider and partner.
The equipment rental industry historically has been dependent upon enduring relationships and referrals from long-standing customers. Customer loyalty, therefore, is extremely important to the success of your business. You want to position your brand as being the best at providing customer service, building a solid reputation among your customers. Focusing on repeat referrals and customer loyalty should be top priority, and it is the most affordable sales and marketing strategy available. A knowledgeable staff trained to understand your business as well as your customers will result in the creation of new ongoing relationships, an increase in sales opportunities and the reinforcement of a positive reputation for your business. A referral is the ultimate compliment to your organization.
Greater employee retention
Employees that enjoy their job and working for your company undoubtedly will treat customers better. Investing in customer service training shows your employees that you are committed to their growth as an employee and individual. Consequently, employees feel valued when they see the company invest in them and that their work is important to the vitality of the company.
Consider how much it costs a business when there is significant employee turnover. Experts estimate the cost of losing just one employee results in 30 to 150 percent of that person's yearly salary (whether an hourly or salaried employee). In the equipment rental industry — an industry reliant on experience and technical skills — it's one added cost that you don't want.