The Importance of Good Customer Service in Construction
When people think of construction, superior customer service isn’t usually what pops into their heads. People gravitate toward the negatives before the positives. Horror stories about a renovation that took too long or a construction crew that didn’t clean up after the job come to mind.
The relationship between a contractor and a client can be tenuous as both sides want the work completed on their terms. However, a good contractor knows providing great customer service is still imperative. Clients can bring in huge gains, monetary and otherwise.
What is “Great Customer Service” in the Construction Industry?
Quality customer service boils down to exceeding the client’s expectations in all areas. To succeed in the construction industry, a contractor needs to pay close attention to customer requests, no matter how big or small. Things that might seem unimportant to you could make all the difference for your clients. It could affect how the client sees your work ethic and customer service skills.
Obvious things, such as being on time, sticking to the schedule and staying within the budget, can go a long way. But customers need more. The foundation of great customer service begins with improved communication between contractor and client.
There are a few ways to keep the lines of communication open. First, train your construction staff to value customer service. Ensure they maintain this attitude during any contact or communication they have with clients.
Second, keep the dialogue open and use your expertise as a contractor to help the client obtain the best value. Define the project with clear objectives and understand what the client wants and needs from the project.
Third, ask your clients if there are any additional services you could perform. More than likely, they’ll have some, and that can increase your monetary gains. Finally, include free services where you can. People love hearing they got something for free, even if it’s menial. Letting your client know you did a few things for free can make them feel appreciated. It can have a huge impact on their happiness with your work.
Benefits to be Gained from Great Customer Service
Treat your clients with respect. Maintaining a great working relationship creates more incentives than just monetary benefits.
Below are a few examples of the positives that can come out of providing excellent customer service:
- Referrals – Clients aren’t qualified to base their opinions on the quality of your work. They usually base their opinions on whether or not they liked you as a person and as a contractor. If you keep your clients happy, they’ll refer you in no time.
- Rise Above the Competition – Providing quality customer service will elevate you above your competition, separating you from the rest.
- Monetary Gain – Great customer services can earn bonuses, especially from public entities.
- More Bids – A great customer service reputation, along with open lines of communication will win more bids, even if you’re the higher bidder.
In the end, customer service in the construction industry is almost always a win/win. The better relationship you have with a client, the less likely you’ll be to have adversarial clients.
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