Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Call Center New Year Resolutions

Call Center Software New Year ResolutionsSure, it’s already late in January, but there’s still time to create New Year’s Resolutions to improve the quality and efficiency of your call center. And look at it this way – if you start them this late in the month, there’s a good chance they will still be in effect in February. That’s more than most people can say about their new diet and exercise regimens.

Try these five resolutions at your call center – all of which can be implemented quickly with the applications of workforce optimization solutions, including call recording software, workforce management software, quality management systems and performance management software.

1. Reduce or Eliminate Abandoned Calls
A call that ends before an agent can even pick up is one that most likely will result in a lost customer. Usually such abandoned calls are a result of long wait times. Cut those times down using call center performance metrics to identify service areas that need improvement. The software can also alert agents when there is a high volume of calls in the queue, agents are out-of-adherence and also detect patterns that could ultimately reduce wait times through changes in staffing or agent performance.

2. Categorize Agents, Not Just Calls
Call center recording and monitoring software can help classify calls by type, length, source, etc. for later review, and this information is invaluable for analyzing results and agent performance. However, from this data you’ll also find out which agents are particularly skilled at handling specific situations – some may have a higher rate of success at calming angry customers so they are not lost, while others have a higher upsell rate. Call center software can be used to route types of calls to the agents best qualified to handle them.

3. Call Center Agent Retraining
Every call center agent goes through training, but retraining is still necessary to maintain high performance standards. Recorded calls can be used in these sessions, which should take place at least every three months, to discover where further improvements might be made.

4. Agent Morale and Motivation
While every call is different, there is an undeniable sameness to the task of the call center agent. A workplace that offers challenges and rewards, and makes each agent feel like an important part of the company can do wonders for call center morale. Many of these incentives can be managed and delivered right to the agent’s desktop through workforce and performance management software, by delivering data and metrics that matter.

5. Reduce Wasted Time
Average Wait Time (AWT) is a familiar statistic at call centers. But AWT can also stand for Average Wasted Time, a reference to the time agents spend on tasks other than engaging with customers. These may include retyping data from one location to another, copying and pasting, data re-entry, etc. With call center quality management and screen capturing software these types of once-manual tasks can be identified and then improved and automated by providing user training and/or process and application changes, thus improving productivity.