As a business, your call center may be the first and only personal contact your customers have with your company, yet it can be a frustrating experience for them. Call center managers are also consumers and expect great customer service themselves, so why do so many call centers get it wrong?
#1. Not Hiring the Right People
At the front line of the call center are the customer support agents, and one of the worst practices is not recruiting the right people. It takes a certain type of personality to deal professionally with customers, whether they are calling with product queries or complaints. The ideal agent should be conscientious, agreeable, open, emotionally stable, and extroverted. Your recruitment process should be able to determine if a candidate is right for your business, and personality assessments are useful in achieving this.
However, the interpretation of assessments should be done by someone trained to do so. The greatest manager might not be the best recruiter.
#2. Not Providing Sufficient Training
Inadequate training can spell disaster for a call center. You might have the right people, and the company could have invested in a great CRM system. But, if agents are not trained in the full functionality of the system, you could miss out on some of the benefits which can improve efficiency and profitability.
On top of the initial training about the products and systems, it has been shown that ongoing training improves the confidence and morale of customer service agents. This, in turn, leads to better customer satisfaction. During training sessions, staff members should also be encouraged to provide feedback to the management, since it helps prevent any small issues from becoming bigger problems. It is also important to make sure that your employees are following Do Not Contact rules.
#3. Not Considering Your Customers’ Experience
When a customer calls, they want to feel that they are valued and that their query or complaint has been satisfactorily dealt with, preferably on the first call. The agent should treat every customer as an individual, detecting their personality and complementing it. Thinking of a caller as just another number in a queue will lead to canned responses.
Another frustration for customers is having to repeat information. Whether they’ve already entered details via their phone keypad, or they’ve been forwarded to another agent, being asked for the same information over and over again will leave them feeling dissatisfied.
#4. Not Using the CRM System Properly
Not having an up-to-date customer relationship management (CRM) strategy can seriously damage your call center efficiency. But having a CRM system is no good if you’re not utilizing its full potential. Your CRM should enable you to synchronize customers’ data in one place and facilitate communication at all levels. Cloud-based communications solutions, such as those provided by Agora.io, fully complement your CRM with voice and video conferencing and storage. Information can be found at the Agora quick start guide.
CRM with voice and video conferencing and storage. Information can be found at the Agora quick start guide.
Running a call center can be a juggling act between turnover, customer satisfaction, sales, and employee efficiency. If your strategy is not working, be prepared to tweak it or change it. Just be sure that everyone is on the same page.