When online shoppers click the order button on your website, they expect to get their selections quickly and in perfect condition. Making that happen is the job of your 3PL provider. While the company’s warehouse staff actually picks, packs and ships your products, your fulfillment center customer service representative (CSR) contributes to a positive buying experience through the support he or she gives you.
CSRs are your primary point of contact with your fulfillment center and provide continuity for all of your account’s day-to-day matters, such as:
- Scheduling orders according to your business rules and KPIs for speed, accuracy, quality and cost
- Providing instructions to warehouse staff for assembly jobs
- Working with you to develop special packaging or kitting
- Answering your questions and resolving service issues
As they perform these functions, fulfillment center customer service reps collect valuable data on order activity, storage, postage and freight. This information, along with recommendations for potential cost savings, gets passed on for your review during monthly and quarterly business meetings.
Dedication: the hallmark of good fulfillment center customer service
A good fulfillment partner will assign you a dedicated customer service representative. Because your CSR works with you all the time, he or she becomes thoroughly familiar with your business operations, inventory, goals, objectives and internal processes and is able to function as an extension of your team.
But even dedicated CSRs take vacations, so your 3PL should have a “deep bench” of cross-trained customer reps who can maintain continuity when your dedicated CSR isn’t available. If you have a red-hot promotion to get out the door, the last thing you want to hear when you call is a strange voice saying, “Dave’s on vacation. Can it wait a week?”
Here’s an example of how dedicated (and committed) customer service can really make a difference.
One of our existing clients asked us to migrate a new division to Amware from their prior fulfillment provider, and gave us a two-week timeframe to get the job done. Obviously, this involved the entire customer service and operations team. But our CSR was the main person who interfaced with the client on set-up, moving some 400 SKUs into inventory, creating and uploading thumbnails to make items viewable online, setting up order permissions for system users, and applying coding for chargebacks (all this while still servicing the account’s other divisions!). Because our customer service team went the extra mile, we beat the client’s deadline and got this division up and filling orders in seven business days.
Fulfillment center customer service reps really do make a huge difference.
Fulfillment can make or break your business
Online sales have been growing as a percentage of overall retail revenue for some time now. That trend has taken a significant upturn since the outbreak of the COVID-19 virus and is likely to become the “new normal” as the pandemic continues.
Your back-end ecommerce fulfillment operations are critical to your company’s ability to take advantage of the opportunities ahead. And, as the primary liaison between your business and the people who put your products into your customers’ hands, your fulfillment center customer service rep needs to be right on point.
Are your fulfillment operations good enough? Are you getting the service you need from your current 3PL? If not, contact Amware. Our people perform their jobs as an extension of your team, managing your orders and inventory like our own business.