7 Tips for a Better Call Center

Maybe you're running an ecommerce call center. Maybe you own and operate a debt-collecting service that uses a call center to contact those in the red. Regardless of the specifics, most call centers could use a bit of shaping up, so here are just seven ways to improve your services and increase your successes.

1. Be Flexible With Your Scripts

The hallmark of a call center is its script, but while they can be valuable tools for opening and directing calls, they shouldn't be rigidly followed with no room for customization. People want to know that they're talking to a real human being and not a robot. Don't make your employees sound like one.

2. Keep Training Your Staff

No one likes being put on hold while a customer service agent looks up information on a database or consults a manager about a problem that they don't know how to resolve. You need your employees to be extremely knowledgeable about products, services and deals, and that means keeping them up-to-date on the latest going on with the company. They should be in a constant state of training.

3. Institute a Call-Back Option

Speaking of hold times, did you know that 75 percent of callers would prefer to be called back when an agent is free rather than wait for them on hold? You might see an increase in customer satisfaction if you're willing to implement a new policy or computer system that will allow your agents to make call-backs.

4. Slow It Down

This may sound counterproductive since call centers can live and die by their call times, but it can actually help you speed things up by allowing your employees to slow down. When they're not stressing out about the amount of time that they're spending with customers on the phone, they're much more likely to be calm, relaxed and professional about conflict resolution.

5. Incentivize Your Employees

Happy employees are motivated employees, so make sure that you're offering rewards for a job well done. They don't have to be big; they can be as simple as gift cards for meeting deadlines or a better parking spot for the highest sales rate of the day. Paying attention to your employees is a good idea anywhere, but it can really make a difference in a cold or impersonal call center.

6. Outsource Your Issues

If you're having problems with things like dropped calls, missed orders or equipment failures, consider outsourcing the issue to a third-party call center. Not only will they set a new benchmark for your previous system, but they'll also have trained professionals who can resolve conflicts with your existing tools and employees.

7. Have a Suggestion Box

If you're a manager or supervisor, you don't really know what it's like on the front lines. It's imperative that you listen to your employees about their likes, preferences, wishes, ideas and complaints. A suggestion box is just one way to let them know that you're listening, but it's a good one; it allows them to be anonymous while still making their issues known.

These are just a few things to keep in mind as you revamp your call center services. Whether you're collecting debts or selling products, use these tips to ensure that your call center is the best.
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