Non-traditional service roles: security, housekeeping, custodial and groundskeeping have more customer exposure than you think!
Journey Mapping is an effective method widely used to analyze and improve processes, specifically related to customer experience (CX). Our clients are often surprised when they discover through the journey mapping process that non traditional service roles have much more customer contact than leaders realize, and if not prepared to deliver, can potentially sabotage your great customer service efforts. In essence, roles such as security, housekeeping, groundskeeping and custodial have the opportunity to interact with our customers much more than we prepare them for; and in turn could either break CX or drastically improve it!
When we are armed with the deep understanding of the impact of each of the interactions of the folks in these non traditional roles has-and then act to optimize it-we will achieve a competitive advantage over our competition and more fully enhance our customers’ experience. Until we fully understand the impact that those people are currently having, and the potential great impact they could have on customer service scores, we are only scratching the surface of the CX equation.
Think about the impression it would make on a customer if your grounds keeper picked a flower and handed it to him or her when they entered your property...now THAT’s a customer experience game-changer!
First, let’s understand the barriers that employees in these non traditional service roles are facing. Often, they are:
1. Not prioritized or prepared for service delivery because leaders have not made the connection that these roles are an important part of the customer experience
2. Often contracted employees and limited in their development
3. Not being hired or screened for customer service skills- the expectation is not presented
4. Speaking English as a second language and may be apprehensive to engage with customers
5. Not rewarded for service behaviors, so they are not addressed
6. Expected to melt into the background rather than be an important part of the customer experience
Realizing the potential opportunities to improve CX is the first step. And here are some tactics and perspective that your organization could use to include roles such as security, housekeeping, groundskeeping and custodial into optimizing your organization’s customer experience:
1. Set up behavioral expectations for each role
2. Share the ideal interaction story for each role
3. Reward, recognize and celebrate customer engagement
4. Meet with contract companies to share expectations and tactics to achieve them
5. Make expected behaviors a condition of employment contracts
While security’s focus is the safety and security of people and place, the tone and approach should always be customer-friendly. Commanding authority while being courteous is an art, and one that is widely achievable when the workplace environment supports it, expects it and demands it.
Housekeepers are generally working while customers are away. However, they should always be aware of guests coming and going, and offer welcoming greetings and assistance when in the presence of guests.
Groundskeepers also need to be aware of guests in their presence. They are not working in a vacuum and should casually seek out guest contact. Pausing the use of loud machinery (such as leaf blowers and power washers) when customers walk near is also a gesture of courtesy and great service.
Keeping a clean facility is one of the best customer service gestures, eye contact, smile and greeting is so unexpected by customers and therefore makes a huge impression when delivered by the custodial staff.
All in all, it should be understood that with a little effort and emphasis, CX can be vastly improved by focusing on the non-traditional customer service roles. When these folks show that they are aware of guests, and appreciate them rather than simply focusing on their tasks with blinders on, CX satisfaction will soar.
Check out our Customer Service Model for more ideas on how to address CX
Would you like to learn more about how you can improve CX with your staff? Contact us!
ABOUT DONNELLY EFFECT: With over 20 years of Disney leadership experience, Mike Donnelly, Chief Experience Officer (CEO) of Donnelly Effect shares his insights on Talent Selection and Hiring, Employee Onboarding, Customer Experience, Workplace Culture and Leadership- among others. Donnelly Effect is home of the exclusive "World-Class Workshop" series and offers consulting services and keynote addresses to audiences of all sizes and industries. Since 2004, Mike Donnelly has been a contracted Disney Institute Facilitator, delivering Disney training to audiences across the United States.