7.6: Customer Service Skills
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Regardless of the role or she fills, all IT professionals who work in schools should be expected to demonstrate excellent customer service skills. “Customer service” is not a term commonly associated with education professionals, but they are skills needed for those who are providing technology support. Exactly what is meant by customer service also depends, but—in general—users and managers recognize those who can identify problems and can resolve them quickly and with a pleasant disposition as having good customer service skills.
Individuals identified as demonstrating good customer serviced skills typically have excellent knowledge of the systems or products they are supporting. In addition, they have the capacity to resolve problems in creative and flexible manners, especially when the standard methods prove ineffective. Together, these elements of customer service represent professional knowledge that can be applied efficiently and effectively.
In addition, those with good customer service skills have patient and empathetic personalities. This nature allows them to listen carefully so that they clearly and accurately understand the problem being presented and they recognize its importance. They also avoid the temptation to blame the use for problems with the computer. At the same time, a technician with good customer service skills will see problem solving and troubleshooting as an opportunity to teach the user strategies for avoiding similar problem and resolving them with independence if they arise.
Regardless of the role an IT professional plays in a school, good customer service skills are important. Improving these will increase the efficiency and effectiveness of IT support systems.