January 13, 2012
Webinar - To Move Your Call Center Forward in 2012, Make Sure You've Got The Basics Covered
By Tracey E. Schelmetic, TMCnet Contributor
If you run or manage a call center, you'll know it's an information jungle out there, and each week seems to bring some new capability your call center should have mastered by now. Customer experience management? Multimedia integration? Communications-as-a-service? Customer engagement? Social media monitoring? Mobile customer service? Location-based customer service?
While all of these concepts are critical to contact center success, it's easy to become distracted and forget the basics. Customers who are being more careful with their limited funds, have come to expect more from the companies they deal with and have a plethora of choices when it comes to whom they give their business to, particularly in the online shopping realm.
As it's the beginning of a New Year, perhaps it's time for call center to make some resolutions. Not to lose weight or quit watching reality TV, but to make a vow to nail down the basics and improve the most important key performance indicators (KPIs) across the board. What are these key performance indicators?
Hold times. It doesn't matter how great your customer service is, if you're making your callers wait an unacceptable amount of time to experience it, chances are, they won't be impressed. Just shaving a few seconds off your hold time can yield big results in customer satisfaction.
Customer satisfaction. Speaking of this, how happy are your customers? Are they all one-time buyers or are they repeat customers? Are they ambassadors for your brand? Are they telling their friends about you on social media? (And if they are, is it good or bad?) Are your agents spending more time upselling your customers, or do they spend most of their time trying to calm them down?
Average handle time. While many contact centers keep this important metric under control by rushing interactions, this is truly a “cut off nose to spite face.” There are ways to keep this important metric under control that will NOT negatively affect the customer relationship: streamlining agent procedures and improving training, for starters. Effective routing is another way to keep this metric down: making sure the customer is sent to the right department and the right agent to start with.
Customer self-service. While of course you want to provide the customers you actually speak with the best possible customer service, the best strategy is to reduce the number of customers who need to speak with you. Effective self-service options via either the Web or interactive voice response (IVR) can reduce the need for your customers to call you in the first place.
Feel the need to brush up on all these concepts? Here's your chance. This Webinar will cover the best ways contact centers can focus their attention on their operations to yield the optimum results.
Tracey Schelmetic is a contributing editor for TMCnet. To read more of Tracey's articles, please visit her columnist page.
Edited by Stefania Viscusi