How Call Centers Can Handle Spikes in Call Volume
When call center call volumes dramatically spike, how are you going to staff? This is an issue management faces, especially around the holidays. Trying to forecast is a great tactic but even the best of the best cannot always predict a change in business needs or events that lead customers to need additional assistance. Here are some ways to prepare yourself, whether you are a manager or team lead, if a call center scheduling crisis comes at you.
Tracking the causes of call volume spikes is always key because history repeats itself, as the saying goes. Granted, some spikes cannot be predicted, such as a faulty or recalled product but by tracking call data for about two to three months, patterns may be easily detectable. Are call volumes higher after a holiday or the morning after a store is closed? During specific promotions or major holidays? This can help not just for the present but for future scheduling models.
Peak call times should have the highest amount of and most equipped call center agents. Not only are these agents known to be efficient but the missed call rates will be dramatically lowered if not completely erased. Key note: agents in training should not be on at peak times. It may be overwhelming, stressful, and they may not have the training to properly resolve the issues.
Every employee has a strength whether it is call resolution, social media, email skills, etc. Know these strengths and use them to the full ability in the call center to have a well-rounded staff. If needed, outsourcing to a third-party agency may be needed.
Always staff on-call agents, just in case call volumes spike, knowing they could be called in and are prepared to work. But, allow for about a two hour window where the on-call agents can call in and learn if they are needed or have the night off.
By following these tips, it should eliminate any issues when it comes to scheduling call center agents when call volumes spike.
How does your call center address spikes in call volume?
Edited by Maurice Nagle