FabFitFun: 6 Lessons Learned About Managing a Fast-Growing Customer Service Team

FabFitFun is all about bringing joy to its members. Each season, it ships them curated boxes of full-size beauty, lifestyle, and wellness products. The brand offers other perks, too: member-only sales, frequently updated workout videos via FabFitFun TV, and a vibrant online community.

One of the biggest perks members enjoy is the company’s commitment to delivering “unparalleled customer service.” Now that’s a bold promise. Especially for a company that has expanded its customer service department from about 20 agents to 200+ agents in the past two years.

We recently sat down with Caitlin Logan, FabFitFun’s Director of Customer Experience, for a webinar discussion about “Metrics That Matter.” We learned a lot about FabFitFun’s growing pains and how the brand has streamlined its contact center operations, kept agent attrition low, and kept its CSAT scores hovering near 95 percent.

Here are 6 crucial firsthand lessons Caitlin shared with us.

 


1. On the Front Line, Consistency Is Everything.

FabFitFun expects its front-line team to project the right tone, provide correct information, and go above and beyond to make each customer’s experience a memorable one. Agents at both the company’s corporate L.A. headquarters and its outsourced call center in the Philippines need to be on the same page at all times—a familiar challenge for many startups.

For FabFitFun, the stakes are unusually high. Members often share their service experiences on the brand’s community forum; if one customer gets a credit for a damaged item and another customer is sent a replacement, it’s a huge blow to the brand’s image.

How does FabFitFun ensure consistent performance across the entire organization? The brand takes a hands-on approach to performance management—starting with weekly leadership meetings and Caitlin’s frequent visits to the Philippines.

“It’s really, really important that our customer service team has consistent responses across all channels. Every agent needs to be trained and knowledgeable so they handle every situation the same, or it will backfire—and people will know about it.”

2. The Right Mix of Metrics Is Key to Managing Performance.

FabFitFun uses a formalized reporting process that scores agents on a variety of measures: productivity (attendance, customer wait times, etc.), technical compliance, soft skills, and service outcomes such as first contact resolution and “save rate” (customer retention).

Customer reviews, which stream into agents’ and managers’ dashboards in near real time, are an important part of the metrics mix. But this feedback serves other important purposes as well.

  • It gives managers the visibility they need to deliver micro-coaching on the spot.
  • It gives agents the means to self-correct.
  • It helps team leaders optimize their time by revealing which agents need the most help.
  • It makes QA reviews more representative and productive.
  • It’s used to set and track performance goals so agents are motivated to keep aiming higher.

Because agents and team leaders have access to the same customer data, they’re on the same page. No confusion, no pushback—just a collaborative effort to clear obstacles to progress and improve the customer experience.

“We care so much about the member experience, it’s a business initiative at the forefront of what every department does. Every performance metric is important, but customer satisfaction is the KPI everyone looks at on a daily basis.”

3.  Real-Time Feedback, Both Good and Bad, Is a Great Motivator.

In the days before Stella Connect, FabFitFun agents received a monthly average score based on thumbs up or thumbs down via email CSAT surveys. Agents didn’t hear directly from customers, and they didn’t receive comments that could give them a boost or help them grow.

Today, every FabFitFun agent has a laptop, along with the Stella Connect feedback stream open on a second screen. Agents love the instant gratification of positive feedback, and they take lessons from the negative to improve their star ratings. Negative feedback doesn’t sink morale or diminish productivity; in fact, both types of feedback keep agents engaged and drive performance improvements.

“I actually see it as I’m walking through the floor, people being motivated and excited about these ratings they’re getting. The negative feedback is not as pleasant, but it’s an opportunity for them to get motivated to do better.”

4. The Difference Between Manual and Automated QA Is Like Night and Day.

Two years ago, FabFitFun’s QA program was entirely sporadic; there was no formal system in place. Caitlin developed spreadsheets, and QA leaders pulled tickets at random to review and score. The process was laborious and time consuming, and it produced little in the way of results.

When MaestroQA became part of the contact center tech stack, everything changed. QA leaders in L.A. and in the Philippines now enjoy the benefits of a fully automated QA process: greater efficiency, a bigger impact, and better outcomes. They choose five tickets per week per agent based on customer ratings, comments, and other specific criteria, and they work with team leaders to make sure all agents get the support they need.

“Those spreadsheets were really, really painful. It took so much time, and it wasn’t automated, and we’d have to pull all the tickets again to get that feedback to the agent. The process is just so much nicer now.”

5. Customer Service Teams Promote Brand Health, in More Ways Than One.

FabFitFun’s customer service agents are the face of the brand. They treat each customer contact as an opportunity to connect and build a long-term relationship. When customers call to cancel their memberships, agents make them feel valued and remind them of the benefits of staying.

The contact center is also the brand’s eyes and ears. All day long, agents hear from customers about what’s working and what isn’t, from policies to promotions to online tools. If an agent has high QA scores but low customer ratings, this can also point to problems outside of service delivery.

FabFitFun uses front-line VoC—both customers’ direct observations and problems revealed by examining trends in the data—to inform marketing, operations, and other departments of the need for change.

“When we see things that aren’t satisfying to members, it gives us some ammo to go back to the company and say, ‘Hey, our customer is our queen. She’s not feeling that way for these reasons. How do we fix that?’”

6. Reward Excellence, and You’ll Get More of It.

FabFitFun has built a service-oriented culture and an energized front-line team by way of recognition and rewards for outstanding performance. Agents can earn points for prizes, and they receive monthly bonuses and awards based on their Stella Connect star ratings and QA scores. Each week, reports from team leaders show agents where they stand so they can work to boost their scores before month’s end.

For the Philippines call center team, FabFitFun hosts memorable icebreakers and team building events such as boat rides and beach outings. These efforts to make outsourced agents feel like part of the FabFitFun family go a long way to instilling brand pride and excitement for the job.

“We’re all about recognizing the team for what they’re accomplishing and showing them the effect they’re having on the business. We really want them to enjoy working here. Focusing on their happiness and celebrating their wins is huge for us.”

There’s So Much More to FabFitFun’s Success Story

During our chat with Caitlin, she shared much more about FabFitFun’s customer service evolution and the best practices that have made the brand a customer service leader. She also described how the brand uses VoC surveys and social sharing tools to further engage customers, amplify great service experiences, and drive sales.

Missed the webinar? Click here to download the recording!