When you search “accounting” online, you fall head first into a pictorial sea of paperwork, calculators and stern men and women in suits. With such a rigid perception of accounting, it’s no wonder people feel reluctant to discuss invoices and payments with staff who handle the administration side of a business. Holmes Administrative Coordinator, Holly Fyffe brings a fresh approach to the accounting side of client relationships. I recently sat down with Holly and asked her to share her perspective.
I’ve found that there are three key steps accountants can take to break through the stereotype, improve their customer relations and enhance their overall experience. The first one is to listen.
All businesses provide goods or services a customer needs, and you can only do that if you know what it is your customers want. Be a good listener. Taking the time to hear what the customer is really saying will allow you to work together to find a solution that is best for all parties.
I try to help customers understand our system and take the time to understand theirs. At Holmes, we’re happy to work out a payment arrangement that suits clients’ business style. By providing the opportunity to customize everything from ordering, design, print and billing, we give our customers the freedom to manage their projects and break free of the cookie cutter mold. That leads me to the next step!
The second key is to connect. Take the time to make customers feel important and appreciated. I use their names in conversation, ask about their day and treat them as individuals. It is important that customers know their value doesn’t lie in a number, but in the relationship you allow them to build. That’s how we genuinely feel at Holmes!
The most important step is providing a level of support that goes above and beyond what they are used to. In this digital age, there’s nothing quite like talking with a real person when you have a question. We try to make sure there are multiple ways for a customer to reach out and that someone is on hand to address any potential questions or concerns. Rest easy knowing when you call Holmes, you’ll be able to speak directly with whoever you need.
The simplicity of our direct connection helps us build and strengthen those working relationships and generates trust. At Holmes, there is no “Send All Invoices” button. I personally review, mail or email invoices based on customer’s preferences. If you have a question or need to discuss something, I am available by phone and email or you are more than welcome to stop into the office and we’ll work together to resolve any issues.
Sure! I really feel like our attention to the needs of our customers sets Holmes apart from others in the industry. We see unique people, unique problems and offer unique solutions. By listening to customers, connecting with them as individuals and offering continuous support, anyone can give a remarkable customer experience from start to finish!