Customer tickets: how not to sign-off your replies

person writing on white paper

If you’re working in customer service, how you interact with the customer is critical from tone to the words you choose. One area often forgotten about is how to sign off your replies back to the customer.

This is particularly pertinent if a customer ticket is likely to not be worked on agnostically (i.e. the same person is going to respond more than once).

To give you an idea of what I mean, here’s an example of how a conversation in a ticket might go…

Could you grant my colleague (copied in here) access to the Github repo?
Hi Steve,

Of course. Can you confirm if they need write or admin access?

Kind regards,
Just write access please.
Thanks for confirming that. I’ve now granted them write access to that repo.

Let me know if there’s anything else that I can do to assist.

Kind regards,

Do you notice anything about the replies? Each finishes with the same sign-off – in this case “Kind regards”.

What’s wrong with this?

Nothing. To a point. Having a sign-off isn’t the issue here, but the repetition of the same one. When every reply looks the same, it stops having any meaning. In some cases, people have these in their signature (please don’t) and others will simply repeat the same thing.

Rather than such flourishes showing a touch of personality, the repetition creates the opposite.

What should you do?

Vary your sign-offs and match them based on your response.

Depending on your customers, I would argue that you sometimes don’t need a sign-off at all. WordPress VIP customers, whom are usually busy developers, want you to get to the point (so no “that’s a great question” at the beginning of your replies!) and although this is at the end, so doesn’t get in the way of them getting to their answer, it’s still not adding much. Even with variance it still sounds pretty artificial and really quite formal (think of when you use “Kind regards” or “Best wishes” at any other time).

In my own tickets I rarely sign off at all, so when I did, it was for a reason and had more impact. For example, when it’s been particularly pleasurable working with the customer you can make use of that sign-off to make sure they know it. “Have a great rest of your day, Stephen”, or whatever it may be.

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