Informed workforce good for bottom line

Your feature “It helps to know the score” (MW January 5) points out that as consumers become increasingly demanding, staff product knowledge and service levels are failing to keep up. Of greater concern is that poor customer service is having a negative impact on companies’ bottom lines.

For example, bar staff can influence customers’ purchasing behaviour – indeed, almost 70 per cent of customers don’t decide what they plan to drink until they’re actually at the bar but in too many outlets, staff lack the most basic information about the drinks on offer, resulting in lost footfall and sales revenue. Conversely, good customer service can positively influence the value of purchases made. However, to achieve this, a well-informed workforce is essential.

Our research has shown that getting staff to interact with products is crucial in improving their product knowledge. This doesn’t just mean handing out reading materials, but holding regular training sessions that are entertaining and encourage participation. Quite simply, staff are on the front line representing your brand to the consumer, so you must ensure that they’re as passionate about your business as you are.

Rich Bryson

Account director

Intelligent Marketing

London NW1

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