Call center solutions: the 10 questions to ask yourself to increase productivity and improve customer experience – Part I

Centre d'appel moderne

Your organization is looking into acquiring a new call center solution in order to improve productivity and improve customer experience? Here are 10 questions you should ask yourself to make an enlightened choice. In this article, we tackle various subjects in the form of questions and answers about your current call center operations and the one you are looking into.

When we speak of a “call center”, we are not talking about sites where hundreds of agents are stuffed into small cubicles answering calls as if it were a factory. Actually, totally the opposite! A modern call center is composed of a small agile group of team members tasked with delivering a precise value-added role for the small or midsize company that it works for.

By modern call center think customer service department, technical support, sales desk, dispatching or invoicing. These are the modern call centers.

In general, call center solutions aim at improving productivity, mitigating operational costs, improving customer experience and reducing employee turnover. To address these objectives let us answer the following 10 questions. In Part I, discover the first five questions.

Do you know the abandoned rate and cause?

In order to improve customer experience, it is essential that you know how many customers abandon calls while awaiting to be serviced. Do you also know why they do so? Call center reporting solutions and wallboards contribute to providing you these answers and help resolving high rates of abandoned calls.

What is the average handling time of your call center?

The average handling time, or AHT, is a very popular statistic with call center managers. It helps identify the best agents and assists supervisors in coaching those that need it most. Live wallboards and historical reports provide vital statistics in clear black and white.

Is your organization routing calls to the person most apt at answering a particular customer request?

Is your organization looking at increasing sales closing rate or at reducing the time it takes to resolve customer technical issues? Whatever the objective is, improving the customer experience is always key to increasing revenues and reducing costs. A call center’s ability to route calls using skills-based routing rules will ensure that customer requests are always answered by the most apt person on your team.

Are your team members spending too much time searching for a customer’s file?

When answering calls, how long does it take for your team members to search and find a customer’s file (or record) in the Customer Relationship Manager (CRM) system? Could it also be that they simply give up on the task due to its complexity? Your organization is missing out on great up-sell opportunities and improved customer service. The call center screen pop feature automates the process of finding a customer’s file.

How does your organization handle peak traffic hours?

Some days, some weeks or some months of the year are busier than others; however, customers still expect the same level of service. Call center solutions allow for temporary (or part-time) agents to log into the system to handle that extra load. This contributes to heightening customer experience and improved sales.

Conclusion

In this first part of a two-part series, we presented you the first five of 10 questions to ask your organization before selecting your next modern call center solution. In these questions, we discussed topics that may impact operations of your existing or future call center from how to improve productivity, reduce operational costs, improve customer experience and retain valuable team members.

In this first part, we discussed such notions as abandoned call rate, average handling time, call routing strategies, spending time searching for customer files and handling peak traffic hours.

Stay tuned next week for Part II where we will discuss processing on-hold calls, keeping a call log, handling VIP customers, training recruits, customizing call treatment by dialed number and how to handle calls based on agent seniority.

Can’t wait for next week to learn more? Do you want to see a live call-center solution demo? Please contact one of our business solutions senior consultant to assist you and guide you.