Innovative customer service pertains to new ways of addressing customer needs. Innovation in customer service is as important as innovation to the product. It isn’t enough to produce new products or technologies; innovative customer service is the other half of the story.
As customer needs evolve, it is important for the business to adjust accordingly in order for it to survive. Acknowledging this need, companies implement innovative customer services to attract new customers and retain old ones.
Even public sector companies have joined in the bandwagon of implementing innovative customer services alongside the private sector. The myth that only private companies need to be customer oriented has long been negated with public sector companies’ aggressive revamping of business strategies to be customer streamlined.
A good example of this concept would be Via Rail Canada. Via Rail Canada is a company that strives to provide one of the best customer service programs in the country. The company is involved in providing rail services from Atlantic and the Pacific up to the Hudson Bay.
Since Via Rail Canada is largely dependent on mass customer base, taking proactive initiatives in packaging rail travel to the various classes is essential. Via Rail Canada’s innovative customer service is apparent in its assortment of programs to cater to different customers’ needs.
Via Rail Canada offers a wide range of products and services to its ever-growing number clientele such as VIA preference for frequent travelers, season tickets, Business travelers packs , students packs, vacation packages, discounted group fares and many others. An in-depth discussion of these programs is found at Via Rail Canada official website.
In 1998, Via Rail Canada introduced NEPO (New Era Passenger Operations). Recognizing that the staffs in Via Rail are the key to success in passenger rail, NEPO aims to provide employees with adequate training to ensure that they have the right skills to implement new tasks thus providing high quality customer service from start to finish.
Customer-contact duties are carried out by on-train services staff supervised by a customer service manager for each train. 81 Service Manager Positions opened were geared to improve service planning and delivery. Due to the NEPO initiatives, Via Rail realized a savings of $15million dollars.
Another good example is Bell Canada, the national leader in providing connectivity to the residents of Canada, is another fine example of innovative customer service.
In 2004, Bell Canada deployed Stellent technology to improve customer service and satisfaction. The innovative customer service program is lauded because it facilitates knowledge management which is essential for a service oriented company like Bell Canada.
With the aid of Stellent technology, Bell Canada was able to harness single-source databank of information which provides quicker access and facilitates retrieval of relevant and latest information used by customer service representatives in call centers spread across Canada.
Consequently, improved customer service satisfaction is promoted. Due to this innovative customer service, Bell Canada enjoyed a visible improvement in productivity, lesser overheads and increase profitability.