By Daniel Price, Customer Impact Scheduler In a perfect world, we would love to post a shop, have it be self-assigned or assign it once, and have it be completed on the day assigned and never think twice about it. However, that often is not the case. Schedulers understand that things can often times go wrong. Working as a scheduler quickly teaches you that mystery shopping is susceptible to all of the wrenches that life throws at you. The unpredictable weather this year and constant snowstorms in the northeast is a perfect example. Schedulers understand that “life” happens and can often mess up plans. Ultimately, our job is to get shops completed, and there is no better way to ensure that than through good communication, no matter what gets in the way. Here are some tips to remember when mystery shopping and developing a good working relationship with your scheduler:
ALWAYS CHECK YOUR EMAIL
Try to check it multiple times a day! As schedulers, our email inbox is our livelihood. If a shop is late, unconfirmed, or we have a follow up question, emails are the first communication tool used to try and get an answer. We understand that shoppers can’t always answer their phone, as some are at work and others are not in a position to do so. Nevertheless, it is much easier to check your smartphone or computer really quickly to see if you got an email. On our end, getting quick responses from emails makes our job a lot easier.
SNOWED IN? GET SICK? LET US KNOW!
I can’t stress enough how important it is to email or call us if something comes up and it may affect the completion of the shop. It is always better to let schedulers know, even if the news isn’t great for us. If something comes up and you can’t perform a shop or you weren’t able to, canceling is a lot better than receiving flake citations. We understand people get sick, emergencies happen, and the weather can get in the way. We love it when shoppers take it upon themselves to get in touch with us. Schedulers are always more inclined to work to re-schedule with a shopper who is actively responsive and looking to help if something goes wrong. Better communication makes you stand out as a shopper, and your name will always be at the top of our list when we have a nice fine dining shop, new locations and clients in your area, or a last-minute shop opens up.
QUESTIONS? WE ARE HAPPY TO ANSWER!
Often times, shoppers will have questions regarding the instructions or the forms on shops. Sometimes they will take it upon themselves to do a shop based off what they think they need to do, and they won’t perform it correctly. If a shop is excluded and the client won’t accept the report, we aren’t able to pay you for doing it. If you see anything on the form or guidelines that you aren’t sure of, call or email us immediately! We are always more than happy to answer any questions you have. Shoppers sometimes think we like to intentionally make it hard for shops to get completed and finalized. That couldn’t be further from the truth! If a shop gets excluded and can’t be submitted to the client, that not only affects you, it means we still have to find someone else to do the shop. It makes it that much harder to get the shop completed. We want nothing more than to get the shop assigned and completed correctly every time. Got a question about the timing of a lunch shop? Something on the form doesn’t add up to you? Ask us! We will answer it for you. Our best shoppers are not always people who do 20 shops a week. Often times, they are occasional shoppers who exhibit great communication and share an equal interest in getting a shop completed. One thing I make an effort to do as a scheduler is always try to help ensure the shopper is as comfortable about a shop or about having to contact me if something comes up as possible. I’m more than happy to work with shoppers who want to work with me. Mystery shopping by default is not a 9-5 job. Scheduling often mirrors that. We understand we may not be able to contact you right when we need to, but we can’t stress enough how important it is to make an effort to get back to us in a reasonable amount of time. Taking the extra step to keep up communication with a scheduler will make your life as a mystery shopper MUCH easier!