Get to know your co-op: CoServ Customer Care (Part 1)

Contact Center assisting Members. Photos by KEN OLTMANN
Contact Center assisting Members. Photos by KEN OLTMANN

CoServ Customer Care Specialists are caring, compassionate problem solvers who live and work in your community. Many of them also have CoServ electric and natural gas service.

Running a successful Customer Care Department requires much more than answering phones or corresponding through emails or chat. While it’s their primary mission, there’s a lot going on behind the scenes to ensure great service every day.

In this two-part series, we will take a closer look at how CoServ’s Customer Care Center operates. This month we’re focusing on the Contact Center and the Training and Implementation team.

What makes CoServ’s Contact Center different?

For most people, the Contact Center is their primary interaction with CoServ, which is why it’s so important to get it right.

Five days a week, CoServ’s Contact Center is fully staffed with Employees who are ready to assist our Members and Customers. Unlike other call centers, the objective is never sales or rushing callers to hurry through the queue.

“We want our Customer Care Specialists to take their time,” Vic Lee, Contact Center Manager said. “Our main goal is to provide excellent service and one-call resolution. Customer Care supervisors also spend time meeting with Employees and providing guidance and feedback.”

Empathy is also important – understanding the hardships Members endure when the power is out, for example, but also reminding them of the difficult and often dangerous job of restoring power.

"They're up in bucket trucks. They're in trenches in the pouring rain,” Michael McCarty, Customer Operations and Quality Supervisor.

As CoServ’s largest team, it’s important to also build a great culture. That’s the job of the CREW (Creating Relationships and Engagement in the Workplace). They help celebrate birthdays and other milestones and provide ice cream and other perks.

“We want people to enjoy being here and if they feel recognized and appreciated, they will take great care of our Members and Customers,” Vic said.

Training and Process Improvement Supervisor Brianna McBride teaches a training class.

It starts with training

CoServ Customer Care has over 250 documented processes, from requests for service to calculating Budget Billing. And we’re always looking for ways to implement technology and add new services.

That’s in addition to providing thousands of hours of training, both for new hires and existing Employees.

These responsibilities belong to the Process and Training Improvement Team.

“We’re the smallest but we have a hand in everything that’s in Customer Care,” Brianna McBride, Training and Process Improvement Supervisor, said. “Front lines, behind-the-scenes, all the way to energy solutions.”

In addition to the training courses for new hires, existing Employees receive training so everyone stays
up to date on the latest policies and processes.

Many of the features that people enjoy in SmartHub today originated as an idea here. Once a new function or process is implemented, Brianna’s team develops the training courses for Employees.

“It doesn’t matter who they speak with, they will get the same information and the same level of service provided to them,” Brianna said.

Don't miss the October edition of Texas Co-op Power

See how the Quality Assurance and Energy Solutions teams help Customer Care provide better service and save Members and Customers money, in part 2.