The success of your company hinges on many things, but one of the most critical is how your team performs in customer experience management (CEM). It is the customer experience that determines sales, profits and ultimately business success. Studies have shown that companies with a 90-percent or greater level of customer satisfaction reported higher retention, loyalty and profits compared to companies with less than 50-percent customer satisfaction. Despite these findings, many field service businesses still remain skeptical about spending money to improve service, because they don’t see a direct correlation to sales and return on investment (ROI).

So what does service excellence mean? It means efficient scheduling, on-time arrival, fixing the problem the first time, and employing a front-line staff that is an ambassador of your company. Successful field service companies want customers who want to do business with them.

There are several strategies that set best-in-class companies apart from their competition. In support of Customer Service Week 2015, we’ve listed 4 that will help you better leverage your customer’s experience in an ever-changing business landscape:

1) Foster a service culture

The workforce is critical to the company image. When an organization exceeds service expectations, it’s clear that its employees understand company standards and will go above and beyond to make sure they deploy them. These companies have created a customer-centric culture based on service excellence. A determining factor in customer satisfaction is how your company engages with the customer. Involved leaders know the appropriate level of resources and competencies to provide to help their staff succeed and ultimately strengthen their competitive edge.

2) Promise less. Deliver more. Communicate.

Unmet promises disappoint a customer more than no promise at all. Savvy companies set realistic expectations and then exceed them. If they cannot meet the expectation, they let the customer know immediately. These expectations apply to every level of staff, from the call center to the field staff. For a company to be truly successful, everyone must be aligned in supporting the company brand.

3) Train workers

To achieve best-in-class customer service, companies must hire best-in-class performers and give them the training they need to do their jobs well and to solve problems the first time, every time. Best-in class companies offer regular customer service training and ongoing meetings about customer service. Consistent training and coaching are essential to ensuring that your staff reflects your company’s values.

4) Quest for efficiency

Today’s customer is more demanding. In service delivery, the customer sees efficient scheduling as an indicator of an efficient operation. While most companies provide technology to optimize scheduling, only one-third offer fully automated dispatch and mobility. A lack of automated dispatch prevents these companies from achieving best-in-class efficiency, a major factor in service excellence. Technology is a critical component to maintaining a well-run, field-based operation. Service-savvy companies know that deploying the right solution to schedule and manage jobs not only pays off in increased service but in a strong bottom line.