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How To Make Customers Happy 4/8/12

How To Make Customers Happy

Jena (Germany) Are you having trouble with the dishwasher? Or with a computer, that doesn’t work as it should do? Or with an incomprehensible instruction manual for the new book shelf? No problem – there is a service hotline for cases like these after all. But if you call them, in most cases you won’t be able to talk to someone close by, but you will be transferred to a call center abroad instead. To cut costs many companies have not only moved their production units, but also their customer services departments to cheaper offshore locations.

But the question is: what impact does this have on the service performance of a call-center? “According to prevailing opinion: a negative one,” says Prof. Gianfranco Walsh from Friedrich Schiller University Jena (Germany). In his experience, “most customers contacting a call-center abroad expect communication problems and a lack of customer orientation”. Prof. Walsh and his colleagues show in a new study published in International Business Review that they are in the wrong.

The fear or suspicion of bad performances from offshore service centers is unjustified as the economists of Jena University, EBS Business School Oestrich-Winkel (Germany) and the Bowling Green State University (USA) are able to point out. “Contrary to previous assumptions the results of our study show that the evaluation of the performance of call centers abroad is not necessarily worse than that of domestic call centers,” Simon Brach from Jena University says. “It doesn’t influence service performance outcomes from our point of view if the customers speak to a call center in Germany or abroad,” the researcher from Prof. Walsh’s team stresses.

How do customers evaluate the performance of service hotlines?

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