How to Align Sales and Customer Service Teams

Sales and customer service teams can’t work together effectively because they are divided along functional lines, with different goals, people, tools, and processes. So how should these two functions work together?

The best way to do this is to get sales and customer service teams to work together on a project of mutual importance, where results can be measured and shared. Give them a common goal that they are working towards, and it will go a long way towards bridging the gap between the two departments. This can be as simple as the two teams working together to solve a customer issue or an initiative focused on that has a measurable impact on the company. Everyone involved in the project must know why they are there and everyone’s role. The process should also be clearly defined so everyone knows how to get their part done.

 

What Is The Difference Between Sales And Customer Service?

Sales are the process of making a deal in exchange for money. The product or service is sold in exchange for cash. Customer service is the support a company provides to customers after the sale. Sales may be achieved through advertisements and promotions, but customer service is provided by employees who are already employees of the company.

Sales and customer service are also mutually exclusive. The same person cannot both sell and provide customer service. The sales department is responsible for selling the product, and the customer service department is responsible for helping customers use it.

The distinction between sales and customer service is essential because, in most companies, they are two different departments with different goals. Sales are concerned with the employee’s performance, while customer service is concerned with the satisfaction of the customer. Salespeople are measured according to the number of dollars they deliver to the company. In contrast, customer service representatives are calculated according to how well they address problems or concerns raised by customers.

The average length that a salesperson remains with a company is a little more than two years. Most in the field do not stay with one company for more than five years. The average customer service employee, on the other hand, stays with a company for seven or eight years.

Sales jobs are in demand. In the United States, sales and marketing are the fastest growing occupations. Companies have figured out that the best way to assure customer satisfaction is to hire excellent salespeople. If someone is not happy with a product or service, they will tell ten people about it. Therefore, a satisfied customer is an advertisement for a company’s products. So the best way to get a happy customer is to hire excellent salespeople who can make a sale.

Customer service jobs are also in demand. Every business needs employees who can help their customers use the products they have bought. Unfortunately, salespeople are too busy to provide customer service. A customer service representative’s job is to ensure that customers get what they want and what they paid for. If a customer has a problem with a product or service, it is the responsibility of the customer service representative to resolve the issue.

While sales and customer service jobs both require excellent communication skills and a pleasant personality, employees need other qualities in each position. A salesperson must be able to set goals, achieve targets, and perform under pressure. Effectively resolving a customer’s complaint requires patience, good listening skills, and the ability to remain calm.

Jobs for customer service representatives can be found in retail stores, banks, hospitals, and many other businesses. Customer service representatives work in office settings and on the phone. They may also need to travel occasionally to help customers who purchased products from them.

Customer service representatives often work overtime and on weekends. They may spend a lot of time on their feet and may have to bend, stoop, and lift heavy objects. Customer service jobs are divided into telephone answering-type positions and customer-service-representative positions. Both require excellent communication and listening skills.

Some customer service representatives answer the phone or greet customers in person and ask about their needs. After gathering information from the customer, they help find the product or provide the information the customer needs. A customer service representative may need to fill out forms or take notes about the conversation with the customer. They may also have to process credit card payments for products or services.

Process Of Aligning Sales And Customer Service Teams

Establish a common goal

Establishing a common goal between sales and customer service can help you improve customer service. Sales & Customer Service are typically two different departments with different purposes. Each department can sometimes have a different opinion about how a customer should be dealt with. For example, your sales team might be willing to offer a discount to a customer who wants to buy several products from your store, but that same customer could be considered high value by the customer service team. If there’s no clear understanding of what the other department is doing, each team can potentially work at cross-purposes.

To ensure everyone is in sync, each department should have a weekly meeting where they can share updates on the work they’re doing and what they’ve achieved. This ensures that everyone follows the same process and works toward the same goals.

Create a strong relationship between departments

By implementing a relationship between the sales and customer service teams, you can ensure that both sides clearly understand their roles and responsibilities. This way, your customers will be satisfied and your company. For example, sales should know that they are responsible for delivering the product to the customer and will be in charge of any complaints. In contrast, customer service should know that they are responsible for answering any questions or addressing any issues that arise with the product.

You should also outline specific interaction terms between both parties to ensure that you are all on the same page. For example, the customer service team may not have the authority to decide pricing, shipping, or refunds. These details should be included in the agreement to avoid misunderstandings.

 

Put the customer at the center of all decisions.

Put the customer at the center of all decisions between sales and customer service teams. To build a successful business, you need to put your customers first. The best way to do that is to ensure that they are involved throughout the entire customer experience. For example, conducting surveys, asking for feedback, and making sure that the sales and customer service teams hear their voice are actions that will help you build a strong relationship with your customers.

 

Benefits of Aligning Sales and Customer Service Teams

The benefits of aligning the goals of sales and customer service go far beyond making the two departments work well together. Here are the core benefits of this alignment:

  • The first is that it creates a more positive environment within the organization. When everyone is working towards the same goal and knows it will directly impact the company’s bottom line, they are more likely to be motivated and excited about getting the job done. It’s human nature to feel good about yourself when you know you have made a difference in achieving company goals. By aligning their goals, sales and customer service teams are more likely to feel good about what they do and their role in the company. This leads to increased employee morale, which directly impacts customer satisfaction and retention.
  • The second benefit of aligning sales and customer service goals is that it allows the company to respond to any problems or issues much more efficiently. When clear communication between both departments, problems are identified and dealt with quickly and efficiently. This means that when a customer does have a problem with their product or service, they can quickly and easily be helped to find a solution. The faster customers are helped to resolve issues, the more likely they will return to the company for future purchases. When clear communication between both departments, problems are identified and dealt with quickly and efficiently.
  • The third benefit is that it allows the company to work with its customers more efficiently. If there is a problem with a product, it can be identified quickly and dealt with faster. If there is a problem with the service, sales and customer service teams can work together to solve the issue. This means that customers are more likely to be satisfied with the result, which will lead to them being more likely to return to buy from that company in the future.
  • The fourth benefit of aligning sales and customer service goals is that the company will have a much clearer picture of its customer base. By working together, both departments can create and analyze data on their customers in a more efficient manner to use it to improve their products or services. This, in turn, will lead to increased customer satisfaction and retention.

Take Away

In the end, sales and customer service are two sides of the same coin: they both need to understand how the customer perceives value and how they will communicate that value to their potential and current customers. Together, sales and customer service can establish a mutually beneficial relationship between customer and company. With a bit of effort, sales and customer service teams can learn to work together more effectively for a fruitful future for both parties.

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