A young man writes in a journal
We can all admit it: aside from the queues at airport check-ins or security or government agencies where long lines are the norm, we have little patience for a queue that lasts more than five or ten minutes. With so many things to do, the last thing you want is to waste time waiting in line for a service or product.
Nine out of ten customers avoid stores with long queues, and 70% of them might not come back. Despite the frustration that customers go through, it’s unfortunate that many businesses are not aware of how much they’re losing by tolerating lines. American businesses lose $130 billion a year due to customer service delays, and poor queue management has been a huge part of the problem, but things are changing.
Many businesses are adopting solutions like the cashier-less concept, but businesses can do more to cut queue lengths. If you’re looking to boost efficiency in your business operations while improving customer experience to achieve growth, operating a queueless business may be the solution. The question is: how do you go about it?
Below, we discuss six tips to guide you in the process of operating a queueless business.
Know Your Service Level Target
Before you think of streamlining your queue management, you need to better optimize your operations by knowing your service level target. For instance, if you’re a service-based business, your service level target should be the percentage of customers, calls, or orders that need to be served, answered, or completed within a predefined period of time.
When determining your service level target, you have to find the right balance between your overall desire to deliver quality business services versus the cost your business is willing to undertake to achieve it. Whether you’re dealing with long queues in your business service, customer service, or order processing section, it’s important to know your service level benchmarks so you can determine how best to serve your customers.
Understand Your Performance Metrics
With a service level target in mind, you can track actual service times using your POS (Point of Sale) data and surveillance data. Get to know the average order time, drive-thru order time, waiting time for customers, the time between orders, and others. Performance metrics are the key to understanding what is causing delays in service speed, why customers are leaving, and how you can equip your staff to deal with long queues. With the right data, you can now take the right steps to streamline your queue management efforts.
Prioritize Customer Requests
A key goal for any business is to prioritize a wide range of customer requests: answer questions, offer assistance where needed, process orders, and complete checkout as quickly as possible. Unfortunately, not all customer requests can be solved immediately. There may be some waiting time in between or several follow-ups may be needed.
How is your business handling such requests? What solutions are you offering? One of the easiest ways to handle customer requests smoothly without causing delays or long queues is getting technology you can rely on. Look for reliable and user-friendly systems like queue management software that will help you deal with long lines.
Adopt Virtual Queue Management Software
It’s no secret that today’s customer wants more done in less time. Whether it’s a customer buying a product in your retail store, a citizen applying for a service at your agency business, or a student filling some registration papers at your institution, you don’t want to cause any delays in providing services. With the right information in your hands, it’s time to experiment with virtual queue management software to give your customers an exceptional experience.
Virtue queues allow your customers to easily secure a place in queues without the need to actually have to stand in line. For instance, by taking a ticket or number with a specific appointment time, in say, a service center, amusement park, bank, or repair and assistance service, customers will enjoy better and faster services at their own convenience.
Adopting a virtual queue management software like QLess--the world’s number one customer experience platform--will benefit your business in many ways:
- Eliminate long lines and reduce walkaways
- Significantly reduce customer complaints
- Gain valuable business insights with tracking and reporting
- Boost operational efficiencies and staff productivity
- Enhance communication and overall customer engagement
With virtual queueing, your customers are simply given a personalized wait time forecast. They can then get timely updates and notifications on their smartphone, tablet, or PC as they move to the front of the queue. With accurate wait time updates, your customers can tend to other business instead of waiting in line or in a crowded service lobby. The result is, often, happier customers and better-equipped staff who’re ready to handle customer needs.
Make Necessary Changes and Compare Progress Over Time
Once you have your virtual queue management software running, you can look at your business’s performance over time and find trends. By analyzing data collected using the software, you can identify bottlenecks and other issues that cause slow service times. To further improve your queueless business, make these critical changes:
- Optimize staffing levels so you can further improve service speeds
- Identify core staff training needs, especially in using virtual queueing software
- Find inefficiencies in the operational processes to better serve customers
Enhance Communication and Customer Engagement
A customer surfs the internet instead of waiting in line.
It’s important to enhance communication and customer engagement between your staff and customers. This way, your business can reduce no-shows by almost 20%. Virtual queueing software also provides extra tools like automated surveys that can help you collect real-time customer feedback, providing you with valuable insights into how you can improve business operations and customer service.
QLess Can Help You
Whether you want to provide fast and efficient appointment scheduling for your campus, streamline workflow in your supply chain business, build an omnichannel approach to provide your retail sales team with valuable customer information, provide tailored care management solutions, or improve efficiencies in government agencies, QLess is here to help.
With our QLess queue management software, you can now operate a queueless business and focus on running day-to-day operations instead of dealing with long lines. Ready to eliminate lines? Request a demo or call us on our toll-free number at + 1 (800) 405-4637 if you have any questions.