Posted by Rebekah McLain on Monday, May 18, 2015 - 08:00
What does customer service training have to do with accounting? A lot, as it turns out. When a finance or accounting firm loses a client, it’s not necessarily because the team doesn’t have the financial savvy to do the job properly. It can be because employees lack the customer service training and soft skills to meet the client’s non-numbers needs.
As a manager, it’s up to you to make certain your team can fulfill both reporting- and service-based needs for your client. Additionally, soft skills learned in customer service training can improve your team’s relationship with other departments within the organization.
Here are six ways customer service training can help your finance and accounting team members keep their colleagues and your clients both satisfied and happy:
1. Building rapport
While your team may be great at creating thorough reports based on big data, how are they at building relationships? Establishing a healthy rapport with clients leads to trust and confidence in your team’s abilities. In the long run, that leads to happy customers who not only return for your financial services but recommend your firm to others.
Communication is a key soft skill in finance. Your team will often be tasked with explaining complex data to audiences not fluent in numbers, including clients and colleagues from other departments. Customer service training can help your team build the skills to make the numbers talk.
The ability to actively listen is crucial in your field and can help your team better understand the needs of the client. It can also benefit your organization internally, as it’s important for finance and accounting teams to understand what other departments need from them.
Breaking down big data for people who don’t have mathematical or analytical mindsets can be challenging. However, it’s important your team doesn’t lose patience with its audience. Doing so could cause an internal rift between departments. Even worse, it could result in a client turning to another company.
Customer service representatives field a fair number of unpleasant calls or emails throughout the day, so instilling motivation is an important factor in their training. This training could benefit your team members, too, as it will help them keep forging ahead and encourage their teammates in the process.
6. Client appreciation
Without the customer or client, your organization doesn’t exist. While employees responsible for client-facing functions are well aware of this, it’s easy for it to slip the minds of those who work behind the scenes. Customer service training can remind those team members that your organization is always striving to improve processes and procedures with the clients’ best interests in mind.
You’ve probably already got a great finance and accounting team, but there’s always room for improvement. Adding some customer service training to your team’s repertoire could take it from being great to being excellent — and that would benefit the entire organization.
Have you implemented customer service training to improve your team’s soft skills? Has your plan succeeded? Let us know in the comments.