This month, we got the inside scoop on customer experience from Karen Grasso, our CX Support Supervisor. Delivering outstanding customer experiences is a priority for all FIDELITONE team members. While most of our deliveries exceed customer expectations, the occasional unforeseen challenge can happen. And it’s how a company handles those challenges that will shape their reputation.
Karen and our CX Support Team handle 150-200 customer and client calls per agent daily. She always makes sure to put herself into the shoes of the customer to understand why they’re frustrated, and that’s why she excels in her role. Being empathetic and perceptive enables her to go above and beyond to shape great customer experiences.
What does a typical day look like for you?
I am part of a team of Fixers. The beginning of my day is spent dealing with exceptions: addresses that need to be changed, orders that need to be canceled. Because I’m the supervisor, I regularly work with our operations teams across the country. I also deal with customers who want to talk to a supervisor. I talk to a lot of people on the phone and email back and forth with different hubs.
What do you enjoy most about working at FIDELITONE?
I like fixing problems. We have a lot of success stories. I’m also a people person so I enjoy talking to our clients and their customers. I do whatever I can to make customers happy.
Speaking of success stories, can you share one that comes to mind?
Last week I was talking to a customer who is pregnant and works as a teacher. She had received most of her baby furniture but was still waiting on a chair to arrive. She tries to schedule deliveries during the afternoon when she’s not in class. When she talked to me, I could tell she was frustrated. I gave her my direct line and coordinated with dispatch to get the drivers to accommodate so we didn’t have to reschedule her delivery again. After our call, she sent a nice message to tell me how appreciative she was of the service.
How did you get your start in the industry?
Just luck. I replied to an ad on Indeed and came in for an interview. I’m very empathetic and I used to be a substitute teacher so I like to teach. When you’re a supervisor and have direct reports, you have to train them from start to finish so my job is the best of both worlds.
How do you train new employees to provide the best customer experiences?
From the very beginning, employees are taught what the expectations are. New hires listen to my phone calls for a while and I listen to their calls. They don’t rush during the calls.
What about the future of customer experience excites you the most?
I’m excited about technology that creates efficiency. We have a big project that should be up and running in the next few months. The new system will take some simple tasks off my plate so we have more time to take care of customers who require extra help.
What are your interests/hobbies outside of work?
I used to do dog rescue and I have four dogs of my own that are all rescues. I have three kids - my son is a baseball player. This is his first season playing college ball so I’m looking forward to baseball season.
Share a unique fact about yourself!
I asked my 17-year-old daughter and she says that I wear red lipstick most of the time!
What do you look at after a customer call to determine if it was a good experience?
I always worry about solving problems. I have to advocate for the customer. I open cases to track customer exceptions and it’s a good day when I get to close all of the cases.
What sets FIDELITONE apart from the competition?
The white glove service. When I first started at FIDELITONE, I didn’t know that the drivers wore white gloves and booties. The two hour time window also sets us apart. I hear a lot of compliments about how great our drivers are at setting things up to the customer’s satisfaction and keeping everything clean. They take all the trash with them when they leave a home.
How do you work to create customer loyalty?
I asked for a direct phone line so customers are able to call me directly. I have my own extension. It makes people feel better that they have a specific person helping to resolve their issue. I’m also very good about following up with customers.
What FIDELITONE value do you most connect with and why?
Customer-Centric (obviously!). However, I do collaborate quite a bit with our hub in Washington, DC. To me, it’s really important that our customer support be a team in all three call center locations. It’s important that we’re all on the same page and help each other out.
What would you recommend for someone who wants to start a customer experience career in supply chain?
I was able to be on the interviews with the two agents that work with me now. You don’t want to bring someone on who has a bad attitude. It’s important for prospective hires to know that the job can be fast-paced, sometimes good, sometimes challenging. It’s helpful to have prior experience in customer service or problem-solving. One of my agents worked at a pharmacy and the other worked in retail so they can handle tough customer challenges.
Here’s how to create customer loyalty through outstanding service:
Customers want to feel heard and understood. It’s important to take the time to see their situation in its entirety. Understanding their specific circumstances can lead to better problem resolution. At a minimum, the effort won’t go unnoticed. You WILL have to go the extra mile in order to stand out from competitors and create loyal customers. Positive experiences go beyond just answering calls and giving answers:
- Provide a direct phone line to make the service feel personalized.
- Keep that direct line of contact with the customer open.
- Reach out to other team members to find alternative solutions
Problem-solving is something that top-notch customer experience representatives feel passionate about. While problem-solving seems like an individual sport, it actually takes:
- Teamwork and collaboration
- Relentlessness - dare to scratch a little below the surface to see what other options may be available to you.
- Optimism - knowing that if you try just a little harder, you will be able to improve a customer situation
Passionate team members like Karen are the reason why FIDELITONE is a great place to work. We truly appreciate their hard work and dedication to providing outstanding client experiences
Are you interested in joining the FIDELITONE team? Learn more about career opportunities.