Amongst the chatter, the tapping of keys on keyboards, and the muted conversations muffled by headsets, you can probably hear a Manager quietly sobbing, if you listen hard enough.
The problems of running Call Centres, or anywhere tasked with making contact with customers over the phone, are diverse.
How do you control a team working over the phone, day in, day out?
How do you gather data? How good is the data you are collecting? What do you do with it when you’ve got it?
All these questions and more are at the forefront of a Call Centre Manager’s mind.
Not only do they have to keep control of their workforce, they are also accountable. They are required to produce reports, give monthly and quarterly figures, supply predictions.
Management and Director’s Reports can’t be constructed using guesswork. A company can’t base predictions or growth forecasts based on the fact that “Julie does really well, but Nathan could pick up the phone a bit more”.
This is why Wallboards are moving from being a nice-to-have, to being a must-have.
These are displays linked to staff activity, updating in real time, and showing each staff member, and their performance.
You can see at a glance who has answered each call, how many calls have been taken by individual staff members, and how many calls have been missed. You no longer need to guess. You can see the real data. You know for a fact that Julie is indeed doing well. You can tell how many calls she’s answered that day, and how long each call lasted. You can also tell that Nathan has missed calls, and is always the last to pick up a customer call.
There are other developments to make the Manager’s life a little easier. For instance CRM integration.
A CRM (Customer Relationship Management) system allows a company to track their ongoing relationship with a customer. As well as holding their basic information, such as name, address, which products they’ve bought and when, it also shows more detail. Like their contact preferences, the last time they called, whether that have experienced issues, and what the outcome of any issue was.
All this is valuable data, particularly to staff who will be making contact. An obvious example might be that the customer has stated previously that they prefer communicating via email, or are on the Telephone Preference Service. In which case, the Call Centre staff member knows not to phone. Another example might be that the customer works on set days every week, so the staff member knows to avoid these days when trying to make contact.
Having a good telecoms system, tied in with an existing CRM system, moves the game on for a Call Centre.
Calls are more productive, have more relevance to the customer, and give a better experience. Likewise, Call Centre staff members have a better working day. They have fewer ‘difficult’ calls with annoyed customers, and so suffer less stress.
With a dedicated Call Centre telecoms solution, staff can even receive help from Managers or Supervisors. For instance, Julie might have a call with a problem customer. The person on the end of the phone is angry, abusive, and won’t listen.
In these circumstances, Julie’s Manager or Supervisor can send Julie a quick chat message, giving advice or support. He can even end the call if he feels the customer has stepped over the line.
Technology has made things easier in Call Centres. From giving useable, real-world data, to improving both the quality of calls and the experience of staff working there.
If you want a hand to implement any improvements, or just want to find out a bit more, get in touch.