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Offering customer refunds as part of a customer service strategy

Expert Lior Arussy advises a reader on call center agents offering credits or refunds as part of a customer service strategy.

Do you recommend setting a limit for the amount of money call center agents are authorized to refund or credit customers? Or, do you think giving agents unlimited power for customer refunds leads to better customer experiences?
This is a tricky question. The amount allowed to be used to compensate customers has to be proportionate to the price they paid for the product or service. It also has to bear some relationship to the damage caused to them. My preference is not to limit the amount of money agents can use for customer refunds but rather educate agents on how to use it wisely.

Any compensation given by an agent needs to be financially justified. I always recommend that agents are taught product costs and margins as well as customers' annual value so they can apply financial judgment to their decisions. By educating them and giving them some real-life examples, you will empower them to do the right thing both for the customer and the company.

This was last published in July 2007

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