2019 CSR All-Stars: Cali Miller, BCSI
Customer Service Representative
BCSI, Burnsville, Minn.
We’re told a picture is worth a thousand words, but for budding photographer Cali Miller, the image of a powerful customer service culture is immeasurable. Though known for her humanistic approach, what really sets Miller apart is her fervent curiosity. According to her nominator, she has found ways to streamline order processing, bringing forward inefficiencies and faults within the company’s system to find solutions and make it better, which benefits customers and the industry overall. Keeping in mind that the 23-year industry veteran has built her entire print career at BCSI, it’s fair to say she knows what she’s talking about. Miller didn’t land here by chance. Before breaking into the industry, she was completing her photography studies at Dakota County Technical College. Like any other student looking for extra money, she got a lead about an opportunity at BCSI. Her husband Tony, who went to school for printing, had been working there as a press operator and encouraged her to apply for the second shift in quality control/packaging. She held that role for six months while completing her degree. Unfortunately, the dynamic of her chosen field was already changing, as digital was poised to take over. Then, a customer service position opened up, so Miller went for it. “I was making money and advancing fast,” she said of the positives. Today, Miller supports more than 200 customers, with some of those client relationships spanning decades.
A typical day: On a daily basis, I support customers through phone and email. I manage rush requests, research and resolve customer complaints, help customers navigate through various ordering portals and manage custom/offline orders while maintaining their corporate specifications. I [also] monitor internal systems and report or resolve, if able, any order flow issues.
Her approach to customer service: I would say my approach to customer service is to meet and exceed expectations. I listen and understand the customer’s needs and have the knowledge about the products and services the company provides to be able to execute immediate results. Being proactive and staying in constant communication with the customers during their experience with us, helping to build strong working relationships [is important]. Follow up and follow through.
How she keeps calm and stays inspired: It truly is all about perspective. I remind myself that there are larger challenges in life and in the world that people are faced with every day. I may be faced with difficult situations daily, and it may become overwhelming at times, but keeping things in perspective helps to keep me calm and collected.
Why she loves her job and the industry: I love the fact that you truly have to hit the ground running every day. [There’s] never a dull moment. I love [working in] a fast-paced challenging environment, turning problems into solutions and having the ability to represent the company in a way that keeps customers happy and coming back.
Her proudest career achievement: Honestly, working in the same industry for 23 years in customer service is an achievement in and of itself. Looking back at where I was and where the company was when I started is such a different view than today. I am amazed at all the changes over the years, and I am proud of the level of service I strive to give the customers every day, and I am proud to be able to be a contributing part of BCSI’s success.
Her best advice: Communication, teamwork and great organization are key. Whether it be the constant communication between you and the customer or internally with management, production, purchasing, shipping, estimating, etc., keeping the lines of communication open and working together as a team will ultimately determine how successful the company is at achieving customer satisfaction and customer retention.
In addition, think outside the box, be engaged in process improvements and make it your mission to learn and understand the “nuts and bolts” of how your company works—the processes from A to B. The more you know, the more effective and efficient you will be in helping the customer, gaining their trust and their confidence that they are in the right place.
What she does for fun: I love the outdoors. [Particularly,] boating, four-wheeling, hiking and spending time with family and friends.
Elise Hacking Carr is editor-in-chief/content director for Print+Promo magazine.