With customer review websites on the rise and diners more vocal than ever about their likes and dislikes, it's becoming increasingly difficult to hide from poor service.
Good customer service is absolutely instrumental to your business. In fact, the Tasmanian Government believes it can not only increase your customer base due to positive word-of-mouth advertising by your happy customers, but it can also boost the amount of money your customers spend per visit along with the frequency of their visits.
Daily Telegraph restaurant critic Anthony Huckstep has told Food Service News that the most common problem in dining out revolves around service. "Skilled staff are hard to come by and training is expensive," he said. However, he went on to note that poor service can come at the cost of a customer not returning to your restaurant again, suggesting customer service training is an investment worth making.
Employers can achieve lofty levels of customer satisfaction by employing wait staff and other workers who have undergone training such as William Angliss Institute's Diploma of Hospitality. Not only does this give students an in-depth knowledge of customer service, but it also focuses on business operations, workplace diversity and rostering.
In his column, Mr Huckstep was quick to point out that training staff up on silver service is not the only way to please him and his fellow guests. He believes good customer service starts with "sentiment and intent", with effort, attitude and commitment all playing a major part in delivering an experience that diners will remember fondly. It doesn't matter whether you run a fast food joint or a hatted restaurant – your front-of-house staff are imperative when it comes to meeting and exceeding customer expectations, ensuring they return to your establishment time and time again.
Mr Huckstep said service is about more than delivering food. "It's an establishment's sales pitch, the transaction between buyer and seller. It is the art of managing a room full of differing expectations to all arrive at the same point – satisfaction," he said. Mistakes are par for the course in restaurants and other hospitality organisations, but it's not about the act of making the error – good customer service comes down to how the staff come up with solutions. By training at William Angliss Institute, your staff will be much better equipped to do just that.