Rwandan customer service is still a stone throw away from reaching consumer satisfaction and trust.
In light of customer services week, an international initiative aimed at recognising excellent service delivery in the workplace, CNBC Africa spoke to Sandra Idoussou, publisher at Service magazine.
In retrospect, Idoussou firstly revealed that the Rwandan government had lost 40 million dollars annually in the last five years which compelled the government’s actions to launch a customer care task force. Idoussou said the industry is “still far from where it needs to be”.
On the backdrop of Rwanda’s budding economy and the monopoly that international companies have established, Idoussou said, “It is important to appreciate competition, I remember five years ago, MTN was the only one but today with other players on board, they have to pay attention to how they deal with their customers.”
This constant competition for consumer attention, is forcing companies to get competition to the level where they will retain loyalty. “When customers are happy, it is the service provider who wins,” she said, addressing how a culture around service needs to be built.
Idoussou said the publishing work she does gives companies the opportunity to hear what the customer word of mouth is about them, providing them with the opportunity to improve.
According to Idoussou, the major challenges to achieving service excellence is a lack of training. “Institutions need to understand and embrace the importance of training, if you don’t empower people they will not understand what is expected of them.”
She further added that in an industry as perception driven as this, “criticism is good” and consumers in Rwanda have become more vocal about their concerns which gives guidance to service providers.