After working at our family installation business for 11 years, I have seen many different trends, lots of different types of people and lots of different and ever changing products. I have also learned the vital importance of customer service. It is a constantly evolving concept and one that installers in the double glazing industry cannot ignore.

There are many tips that I could give when it comes to customer service, but these are five finishing touches that add that little bit of extra polish to the over all customer service experience with the home owner.

Present your quotes well

If you’re still giving prices to home owners written on a scrap of paper, give yourself a slap in the face. It’s 2016, put some effort into it!

I have always found that a well presented quote really does finish off the first phase of the selling process with the sales staff well. We present ours in a neat folder with our logo, with a slot for a business card, a sheet explaining what happens if and when the home owner decides to go ahead. It’s all very compact, slick and we get regular positive feedback on the way we present our quotes.

A lot of customer service is making the feel home owner feel special and looked after. A finishing touch like this makes the breaking of the news of them having to spend some money a little easier to take and a little more relaxed with you.

Admit your mistakes and put them right

Any company promising that every job goes 100% correct is lying. This is the real world and no company should be promising anything that they cannot deliver on.

However, it does pay off to admit to mistakes that have been made and do whatever possible to put them right.

One of the industry’s biggest problems with customer service is how so often companies fail to put right things that have gone wrong. It could just be the little things. A door may have dropped but needs adjusting. A window handle may not be working properly. There might be a scratch on a unit that needs looking at. If an installer doesn’t have a good enough after-sales service then very quickly all that novelty and positive feeling from the home owner is going to dribble away and be replaced with frustration and disappointment.

So, get it right, acknowledge errors and issues and make an effort to put them right as soon as possible.

Keep regular communication

Seems like a very basic point to make, but you’d be surprised how often some of our customers complain about the lack of communication they have during their experiences from other companies.

The communication from your sales staff or office staff shouldn’t stop until there’s a fitting date to talk about. You could have a ten week lead time. The home owner will start to feel uneasy if you sign them up on week one then they don’t hear anything from the company for seven or eight weeks.

Even if there’s nothing much to report on, a quick phone call or even an email or letter to say that they’ve not been forgotten about and that they’re very much in the schedules of installation will keep them at ease.

In fact regular communication at all stages of the sales process, from start to the very last silicone seal is always advised.

Customer feedback forms

This is for both parties really, but customer service feedback forms are really useful. They’re helpful to home owners to pass on their thoughts on the company, their methods of working, the quality of the products and the overall level of customer service.

They’re also useful for installers as they provide a great way to get direct feedback from home owners. In my experience these forms often provide some very honest answers. Customers have a chance to tell the company they bought from what they thought of the whole sales process, the people involved, the products and the overall experience. These forms should be taken seriously and amendments made to improve the customer service experience in the future.

The mere act of asking customers for feedback adds that one last professional touch just as the contract is drawing to a close.

Stick to times

Last but by no means the least is for installers to stick to the times agreed. This goes for every stage of the process, from the sales person turning up at the home owners door on the very first occasion, to the fitters getting there on site at the time agreed with the home owner.

There is nothing more irritating for most people than agreeing a time with someone, then that person turning up late, or not at all. It’s a common across all manual trades, people not turning up on time or not at all. It what has given many trades a rather dodgy reputation.

The simple act of turning up to an appointment, the surveyor turning up on time, the fitters turning up when agreed, it all keeps a professional image up. Attention to small details like this is what home owners notice the most.

These are just five of many things installers can do on the customer service front to make sure home owners are kept happy and will recommend them to friends and family.

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