Customer care and customer service - Marketing Management

A degree of confusion exists regarding the relationship and distinction between customer care and customer service. In fact, although the two are closely related there are also some major differences.

Some of the key differences are captured by Stone and Young6. Taking each of these differences in turn, customer service emphasizes the tasks involved in servicing customers rather than customer needs. It is more a supplier’s view of the elements of customer requirements as opposed to the customer’s perspective. Customer service also focuses primarily on the costs associated with customer requirements, whereas customer care centres on long-term profit and revenue implications. With customer service, more attention is given to procedures, management processes and hierarchies and on technical and administrative requirements. Customer care, on the other hand, emphasizes the importance of procedures that encourage responsiveness to customer needs and ways in which management systems and procedures can support this with a view to achieving commercial, as opposed to technical or engineering, aims and goals. Having said this, in many companies we still find customer service departments. There is nothing wrong with this so long as the elements of customer service and the activities of the customer service department are set and managed in the context of a wider overall company approach and perspective regarding customer care. Put another way, customer service is but a part of overall customer care activities.

Differences between customer services and customer care

Differences between customer services and customer care


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