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Check out our informative articles below!


Protect Your #1 Asset - Customers

It's a sad but shocking truth that most waste management companies are using system software that originated in the "dark ages" of the computer. If your software is ten or more years old, you fall in with this group. And while many people subscribe to the adage "If it ain't broke, don't fix it", that could be disastrous for the future of your company. New software is one of the best ways to improve your company's overall productivity.

But whether your system is "state of the art" or ancient, it probably focuses more on general ledger reports and billing, without servicing the real information needs of your customers. This is the biggest mistake you can make.

No matter what system you choose, customer service must be the keystone of your organization. Customers literally make or break a company, and the competition is getting fiercer every day. Customer loyalty is challenged each time a competitor offers a cheaper price, even if your service to the customer has been beyond reproach. No doubt you have already spotted waste containers with new company names on them, even in your own neighborhood. Your customers may have reported being contacted by another company. Can you really afford to fall short in this crucial area?

There are several ways you can better address customer service, even without significant system modifications.

Consider establishing a way to track and catalog all customer problems. Attach notes to customer files which include not just requests and problems, but information about other offers customers may have received from competitors. Then establish an answering offer which customer representatives and sales personnel can use to help retain customers.

Make sure you know all key customer personnel at commercial and industrial sites, including their title, telephone, fax, cell phone, supervisor, secretary and other related information. It's essential that you know who to call in each situation, and it's only common courtesy to know who answers that person's phone.

Never stop reinforcing the training of your customer service personnel. Regular meetings to review policy and procedures regarding customers can help your employees deliver consistent service. Written procedures are essential, especially if you want to train a new employee, and existing employees can review them when needed, as well.

Establish forum discussions where the personnel can talk about various customer contacts and receive feedback from peers. Being able to share "war stories" is a great stress reliever. However, don't let these meetings sink into a complaint session about your customers' faults. You are looking for good, open communication where employees trade experience and advice.

Finally, never underestimate the importance of your biggest asset...your customer.




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