October 7, 2015 | Part 2, A Day In The Life Series
We’re back with the next post in our ‘A Day in the Life’ series, where we put a spotlight on the people who make up the team at Complete Financial Balance. Today’s post focuses on our exceptional Customer Service Officers or CSOs. We interviewed the team to gain insights into their day-to-day schedules and collect some valuable advice for those who may be looking to break into (or just wondering about) the CSO field. So without further ado, here we go!
The CSO team at Complete Financial Balance is made up of 5 hard-working and enthusiastic people, Natalie Burgess, Clair Maher, Michelle Canning, Rikki-Lee Appleyard and Lyle Vinter. Carrying on from our Corporate Values blog post from last week, we get a glimpse into the daily activities of a CFB CSO to see how they CARE, how their day looks, and who they are as individuals.
Firstly, what exactly is a Client Services Officer?
Rikki-Lee: A client services officer is exactly that, we are here to make the lives easier for both the advisers and clients. We provide administrative support to make the process of an application or claim flow smoothly.
Michelle: Once the application has been written, our role is to bring the application to completion by welcoming our Clients, keeping the adviser and client updated with the progress until the application is ‘in force’.
Natalie: In a nutshell, CSOs are supporting staff to advisers and clients by assisting with client queries and needs along with the implementation of advice.
Lyle: Exactly, Client Service Officers are problem solvers who achieve excellence through open two-way communication and knowledge sharing.
Can you describe what a typical day looks like for you?
Clair: My day begins by checking the CSO task list right at the beginning of the day and then reporting the information to our General Manager. I check all sources of incoming work which includes my personal email and the general admin inbox, and then the CSO in-tray in the office.
Natalie: Once I have checked my email boxes, I prioritise my work from my emails for the day and create a task list to ensure all client and adviser needs are met.
Rikki-Lee: As we have a lot of different work coming in through a lot of different areas, it is important to balance correctly where your immediate attention needs to be. I always get in early so I can get myself prepped for the day, open all my emails and tasks and be ready to go at 8:30 work start.
Everyday sounds different for you, so where exactly does your role slot in at CFB?
Lyle: Overall, as a CSO my role is to communicate with our paraplanners and advisers to develop and implement strategies which ensure our customer needs are met and their level of satisfaction is maintained and exceeded at the highest possible levels.
Clair: We act as the middle man between advisers and product providers, and clients and product providers.
Natalie: Our role is to assist with the implementation of advice and act on any client changes and requests, such as updating details with insurers and account details.
Michelle: As Clair mentioned, we’re between the adviser and the client, so we take over the application or task once the adviser has seen the client.
What is your favourite part about working as a CSO at CFB?
Rikki-Lee: I have recently contacted a client who submitted a claim, to let her know that I am here throughout the process to help her out with any queries she has and to ensure the process is as easy and burden free for her as possible. She was incredibly thankful and deeply appreciated the conversation I had with her, even as small as it was. It’s things like that, which make coming to work every day worth it.
Clair: We have a great work culture! We get to work with some really outstanding people who have a great deal of knowledge and are very motivating to work with on a daily basis.
Natalie: Definitely working in a team of CSOs with a great company environment as a whole. I genuinely enjoy coming to work in the morning and knowing that we are going to help clients achieve their goals.
Michelle: For me, it’s the variety. From new applications to policy schedules, speaking with advisers and a variety of companies.
You’re part of a fantastic CSO team and you enjoy what you do, so what is one piece of advice you would give to someone who wants to get into the CSO space?
Michelle: As I said before, variety is a big thing for me, so be prepared for the variety and to be kept busy in meeting and exceeding the adviser’s and the client’s expectations.
Natalie: Have patience and prioritise work tasks, it makes a big difference.
Rikki-Lee: My advice for anyone wanting to get into the CSO field would be to ensure you have well rounded time management skills, as an essential part of this job role is ensuring things are completed within a certain time frame. A good team to work with is also important. I fell very lucky to work with the people I work with, as they are all supportive, helpful and entertaining.
Clair: Learn as much as you can about the products you are dealing with – it makes a huge difference.
Alright, so you’ve given advice to someone who wants to be CSO, what about advice that you’ve been given at CFB?
Lyle: The minties are for customers only!
Clair: Run things past the advisers when you’re not sure, they have a wealth of knowledge that they’re more than happy to share.
Michelle: Check your tasks and emails as they both manage your workflow.
Rikki-Lee: Coming from an office where I worked solely with one adviser, I have been given extremely helpful advice on how to manage my time effectively so I can provide assistance to a greater magnitude of advisers. My confidence and time management has improved ten-fold.
What about your time outside of the office? How do you like to spend your free time?
Clair: I like trying to see as much of Brisbane as possible
Natalie: What free time? I have two kids! I enjoy silence and going to the toilet without being summoned.
Lyle: Spending time with my grandkids and wife, or being outside riding my bike, climbing, hitting golf balls or kayaking.
Rikki-Lee: I enjoy soccer, MMA and going to the beach with my squadron of puppies.
Michelle: Socialising with my family and friends!
Want to learn more about our CSO team?
If you would like to read more about our wonderful team of CSOs, then head on over to Our People page where we have detailed profiles about each of the CFB team members.
Our last post was all about sharing our Corporate Values, so if you’d like to read more about the values and actions that guide the CFB team and build our exciting work culture, then click here.
Stay tuned for the next post in this series, where we will give you an insight into the daily life of another CFB team member!
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