Good customer service is important in every industry and it seems to be a key issue for translation and interpreting companies. Keeping clients satisfied is essential in order to ensure that they require our language services over and over again. However, what does providing good client service mean for translation and interpreting agencies?
The Importance of Technical Competency
Project managers are the face and voice of the company and, therefore, the way in which they interact with the client is essential. It is very important that they have sufficient knowledge and that they have received appropriate training before they handle any emails or live phone calls.
It is not strange for language coordinators to receive urgent translation or interpretation requests and nothing can be more stressing for a client than realizing that the person trying to help him is not really qualified to do so. Translation and interpreting companies are definitely hectic environments and coordinators need to be able to live up to such a challenging rhythm. Project managers need to be very familiar with each client’s procedures for ordering translators and interpreters and have immediate access to a list of available language professionals who would be able to satisfy the client’s need.
The Ability to Stay Calm
Another key factor that makes to a good client service in the translation and interpreting industry is the ability to stay calm even in tense situations. Dealing with people all day long is always stressing, even more when the client is upset because the interpreter is late or because he is billing discrepancies. Project Managers need to stay calm, let the client talk about his concerns and then calmly offer an explanation in a positive manner. It is important to understand that, many a time, the work environment of the client is also stressing (courts, hospitals, law firms, business organizations) and therefore empathizing with the client is usually the best way to make a lasting good impression.
Excellent Organization Skills
Taking down notes of everything done throughout the day, making sure that every phone call or email is being handled in the best possible way also contributes to a good customer service. As it has already been mentioned, translation and interpreting companies are hectic work places and it can be easy to forget about a phone call or miss a translation deadline. Project managers are expected to have excellent organization skills in order to be able to perfectly manage multiple duties and requests at the same time.
Politeness and Good Manners
Last but not least, being polite and showing good manners also contributes to always delivering a good customer service to those clients that request the services of translators and interpreters. Sending a follow-up email after a translation was delivered to check if the customer is satisfied with the translated document or a phone call to the client that requested an interpreter to confirm if he has found the participation of the language expert useful are small and simple ways in which Project Managers can show to clients that they really care about the services offered.