Why is it Imperative for Businesses to Incorporate Multi-channel Call Centers?

multi-channel

While looking back at the evolution of communication technology in modern times, who could have thought we would come so far from sending smoke signals and carrier pigeons to sending and receiving calls, texts, emails etc. in the blink of an eye over long distances. But here we are, taking pride in what we have achieved and what is yet to be.

Almost all the sectors around the globe have benefited from the advancements in modern communication technology, one such sector is the call center industry which, I believe, has gained the most be it hands-free phones or cloud-based call centers or business intelligence analytics and seeing its current progress one thing is certain, it isn’t going to slow down.

Though the evolution of this industry hasn’t been a smooth one. Not that long ago, the primary task of call center agents was receiving calls and handling only the basic issues while the complex ones were transferred to the manager. But that was then, the call centers of today use multiple channels to handle more complex issues than ever before.

And the result? More and more businesses nowadays are leveraging multi-channel call centers to offer various support services to its clients in order to meet the ever-growing expectations of customers from the same organization.

What is a Multi-Channel Call Center?

A multi-channel call or contact center is basically the merging of multiple communication channels into a single, centrally managed platform. These multi-channel services include,

a) Call center services

b) Email support services

c) Video chat support services

d) Social media customer support services

e) Chat support services

These services also serve the need of the hour because today customer dependent businesses working with any one customer service channel will miserably fail to ensure customer satisfaction, hence a multi-channel contact center.

Benefits of Incorporating Multi-Channel Call Centers:

Over the recent years, we have seen more and more businesses incorporating multi-channel contact centers in order to provide better support services to their customers. But what are these key benefits these businesses are getting, let’s have a look.

Instant Support

The current technologies of today have made our customers impatient and in need of instant gratification. Offering instant support through live chat, providing answers on social media, faster replies to emails etc. is the only way businesses can curb these gratifications before arising or, in other words, nipping the issues in the bud.

Deep Customer Analytics

Multi-channel call centers help in better customer analytics by offering a single point access to all the customer-related information which also includes a knowledge repository of past behaviors and the deep analysis of how these questions were answered. These analytics help businesses tweak their sales tactics based on customer demands.

Multi-Tasking Operations

Multi-channel call centers make it much easier for individual agents to multi-task and move swiftly across different channels because of the presence of a single version of customer data located in a single application. As a result, a single agent can easily navigate through any channel to resolve customer queries and helps reduce the burden on voice agents.

Omnipresence

Another great way a multi-channel call center can help you is by being present across all the available channels to offer support to the customers and collecting all the information stored at one location. So, if your customer switches in live chat and moves on to FAQ, to social media sites and at last to a voice call, your agent will still have a single record of that customer with all the necessary data required for any future reference.

Upsell and Cross-Sell

With the availability of all the customer related information at agent’s fingertips, he will be better able to understand their sentiments and suggest associated products and services that might interest the customers. These suggestions are different as they are based on facts contrary to the ones made by traditional call center agents based entirely on hunches.

Improving Corporate Image

Multi-channel call centers that are available on all the channels frequented by the customers contribute greatly in establishing the brand image for the organization by showing genuine interest in what the customers have to say along with proactively answering customers comments and being aware of any change in customer sentiments.

End Thoughts:

Day by day the competition is getting tougher. Apart from promoting their interests in mass media, companies must work hard on their customer relationship too. And for this to happen, the companies must allow their buyers, the freedom to choose their mode of communication, be it social networks, fax, email, SMS or anything else they deem fit. This is the only way the customers can enjoy their experience with the company.

5 Tangible Benefits only a Call Center can offer the ISP Industry

The history of ISP or internet service providers might not be that old (a couple of decades actually) but its ever-growing demand is simply outstanding. Though ISP industry bears some close resemblance to the telecommunication sector, it still has got its own set of rules to follow and learn from customer expectations all while working in close proximity with ever-changing government regulations.

In the beginning, internet service was being provided through telephone lines which was later transformed to wireless options using wi-fi networks. If one looks on a global scale, today, ISP is considered one of the most unpopular industries among consumers, the primary reason being some recent issues between government agencies and telecommunication industry regarding the maintenance of an open internet a.k.a. net neutrality.

However, this lead to an increase in the competition as even the established brands now had to struggle to find new customer service solutions in order to stay successful. On the other hand, as the government regulations prevented monopolies back in 2015 and wi-fi became a constant presence in our lives, this further lead the consumers to switch over to the companies offering exceptional services not only with solving queries about popular platforms but also assisting audiences with the information they need to make smart consumer choices.

Any internet service provider who is committed enough to satisfy the needs of its consumers should demonstrate its brand value to every customer service communication. But what if a company doesn’t have the required technology or experience to meet the growing demand of modern consumers and innovative channels? Well, in that case, the perfect solution would be to hire the services of a third-party customer care services provider to help beat the competition and increase your bottom line. Let’s see what else you can get by hiring a call center.

1. Billing Service

A professional call center understands invoicing, is already familiar with the ISP industry along with answering service usage stats and its modern software which collectively can handle your entire billing process along with its retention and collection. It offers-

a) Timely billing to help you collect the bills on time.
b) Accurate invoices to enable the hassle-free transaction.
c) Effective collections to ensure all bills are collected as soon as it becomes delinquent and not later.

2. Technical Support

Call centers also offer technical support which enables the internet service providers to differentiate itself from their competitors with a high level of service quality, problem resolution and quicker responses to help bring a big smile on the customers’ faces which ultimately leads to healthier bottom lines.

3. Customer Care

The delivery of an excellent customer care service plays a critical role in determining the success of any organisation. ISP sector is no different, in order for its client base to be happy, satisfied and loyal, it must ensure prompt, efficient and ‘going beyond expectations’ customer service tailored to its customers’ needs.

4. Sales and Customer Acquisition

Call centers also play a vital role when it comes to processing an effective sales and customer acquisition strategy. We all know how today’s competitive work environment requires organisations associated with ISP to engage with all potential clients across multiple channels using both inbound and outbound communication services.

Well, a call center not only provides all this but, in addition, nurture and strengthen customer relationships as well to help promote revenue generation.

5. Customer Loyalty

Remember one thing, customer feedback, whether positive or negative, travels fast, and only a superb customer support can guarantee a positive word of mouth. With a reputed call center working by your side, your company’s reputation will build up in no time once your customers start sharing on social media the best user experience they had with your company.

Conclusion:

In the end, it all falls back on the start-up companies to make the ISP industry more competitive in the coming years but in order to do that it’s very important for it to communicate value through call centers apart from recognising consumer demand. Here, a customer service provider can easily analyse the survey result of customer satisfaction to determine which service channels need help and which consumer data will be useful to design future payment options and service agreements.

Original Source: https://www.theoctopustech.com/5-tangible-benefits-only-a-call-center-can-offer-the-isp-industry/

5 Benefits of Blended Call Center You Should be Aware of

Blended Call Center

Utilizing the time of agents is currently one of the most challenging aspects of the call center industry. Often, call center supervisors can be seen distributing and redistributing resources repeatedly to different departments and operations. As a result, precious time is wasted doing these arduous tasks thereby, affecting the overall productivity of the related call centers. The solution? Blended call centers.

What is a Blended Call Center?

A blended call center is one where agents both make and receive calls to meet the demands of strategic dictate. The combination of predictive dialing for outbound calls with automatic call distribution for incoming calls results in each agent effectively handling the work overflow of the other, thus making each agent’s time that much efficient. Also, this combination of calls helps in adding variety to the day and make the job less boring.

Apart from offering the blend of their inbound and outbound campaigns, blended call centers also come with a wide range of features such as-

a)Intelligent Dialer Function

b)Call Barge-In

c)Live Reporting and Analytics

d)Call Recording

e)Agents Extensions

f)Call Transfer

g)Support for Work-at-Home Agents

Armed with these features, blended call centers offer an upper hand to businesses, lending them efficiency and agility, regardless of the scale of their operations. Let’s talk about these benefits in detail,

1) Higher Efficiency Rates

Blended call center agents have a habit of working in complete harmony with each other to provide the best solutions for their client’s business, whenever call volumes get high or there is a call overflow.

Not only this, but blended professionals can also run an outbound campaign for businesses whenever it requires them to run a marketing campaign for a specific time-frame. Another plus point is this uniformity in handling responsibilities teach them to work more efficiently along with ensuring zero-idle time.

2) Flexible Nature

With the help of technologically advanced tools such as automated call handling, IVR etc. blended call centers can easily provide a level of comfort that is much hard to match by its competitors. This is because agents know how to work together in order to smoothen out the whole customer serving process. By being available 24/7 for the customers, these agents use their expertise to render the ultimate level of service experience.

3) Highly Skilled Team

One major drawback of offering either inbound or outbound call center service is that the agents will only be versed in handling one sort of customers while on the other hand, a blended call center service harbors a team of highly-skilled individuals proficient in handling both inbound and outbound calls.

Moreover, these agents are quite skillful in providing valuable insight about customers and are in a much better position to help you plan your business model accordingly.

4) Prioritising Customer Satisfaction

The average hold time is reduced significantly once you let the proficient experts of blended call centers handle calls and offer innovative solutions to their problems. It is also because of this reduced hold time; customer issues can now be retorted much more swiftly. Not to mention the efficiency and effectiveness with which the customers will be served and a strong brand value established.

5) Low Turnover Rate

Last but not the least, these job roles lend a positive attitude to the agents as they are tended to change on a constant basis. Furthermore, this prompts them to work more comfortably and enthusiastically.

Though there is some uncertainty, the positive work routine offers an exciting work environment to its agents. And the happier the employees are, lower will be their turnover rate and as a result, more trustworthy they will appear to partner with.

End Thoughts:

As we have learned so far, blended contact centers provide a perfect balance of both inbound and outbound call center services. Though we are not underestimating the advantages of running a dedicated inbound or outbound call center here, a blended one brings the best out of both the worlds for the employees, customers and the call centers in itself.

Original Source: https://www.theoctopustech.com/5-benefits-of-blended-call-center-you-should-be-aware-of/

Why Customer Support Outsourcing Should Matter to Your Business

Outsourcing, at first glance, seems like an appealing idea especially when you look at all the benefits that tag along, benefits such as saving you tons of money, resources and often times, a great deal of stress. Though farming out your customer service will definitely help cut overheads, you have to understand here that it’s not a one-for-all solution to your problems or in simple words, there is no such thing as magic outsourcing beans (in case, you are thinking otherwise).

Now, keeping this in mind, let’s move on to understanding what exactly customer support is and how can it help grow your business along with some of the best practices that come with customer support outsourcing. Combine these for yourself to figure out why (or whether) outsourcing this service should matter to your business.

What is Customer Support?

The general image that pops into people’s head whenever they think of customer support is that of a group of friendly, smiling people answering client’s phone calls. Though in practice customer support agents play a much bigger role, serving as a prime connection between your business and its clients, handling queries from installation guidance to technical failure to initial set-up to maintenance, security and God knows what else. And this, in turn, makes them direct representatives of your establishment and its work culture.

How Customer Support can help your Business?

Knowing about customer support is one thing but understanding how it can help your business along with utilizing it to its full potential is completely another thing. Apart from securing purchases (by resolving queries) and referring the client to other products which help bring loyalty within the client, customer support teams relieve your in-house employees to concentrate on their work and achieve higher efficiency by handling themselves the direct communication with the clients.

All this, no doubt, leads to an elevated company’s image and the building of a trustworthy and reliable brand. Just keep this in mind, a good customer support service is one that not only makes the money but also saves the money.

What are the advantages of outsourcing your customer support services?

a. If you compare the cost of creating your own in-house customer support team to that of hiring a call center fully equipped with all the infrastructure and a team of employees, you will realise outsourcing will be a much cheaper deal.

b. With the help of outbound services that are offered by many call centers, you can avail various other services as well such as welcome calls, cross-selling, ‘winback’ campaigns etc. In short, it can provide another avenue to grow your business.

c. As your business grows, the majority of your time will be taken up to providing customer support service to your customers whereas outsourcing this service will help you to reallocate your time and expertise to areas that need the most attention.

d. Another great aspect of outsourcing is working longer schedules. Just kidding, what I mean is, you will be better able to satisfy your customers’ needs even after your business have been closed for the day as call centers generally operate 24/7.

e. Here’s a fact, if you are not up to date with the current technology, you won’t last long. But outsourcing can help resolve this issue for you once and for all as the call center agents generally work with most significant technology, you can be rest assured that your customers are being offered the best service possible at all times.

f. Customers, nowadays, are much more demanding than they ever were and will not hesitate to switch over to your competitors if you fail to satisfy their demands. Outsource customer support to a service agency with the experience and expertise to handle customers and within no time see your pockets lined up with revenue.

g. A reputed call center always comes with a team of trained, qualified professionals with the access to best practices and techniques only a professional would know. Try to do this yourself or use unqualified individuals and it might result in PR disasters which in the long run will damage your business.

f. Having a call center at your disposal can mean great things for your business, things such as flexible schedules, additional services and certain other capabilities your in-house team can only dream of achieving. Today’s call centers are basically made to tailor their services in order to meet your needs.

Conclusion:

Outsourcing customer support applies all the principles of customer service which includes not only helping customers to solve problems (no matter how small or big) and make better decisions for themselves but also in functioning as a part sales and part tech support. And the outcome? A happy, satisfied customer. What more could you possibly want?

Original Source: https://www.theoctopustech.com/why-customer-support-outsourcing-should-matter-to-your-business/

Role of Customer Support Outsourcing in Revenue Generation

Customer satisfaction and loyalty are two key factors you should look for while pursuing organisational success and long-term growth for your company. Fortunately, both these factors are naturally a part of customer service that has always kept the customers happy and ensured their ongoing loyalty thus, contributed their share to the corporate growth. But with the passing time, as the expectations of customers are continuously evolving along with the complexity in providing them the desired services, various businesses can be seen struggling to maintain the strategic value and profitability of their organisations.

One solution to this problem can be staffing and managing your own internal call center but various examples over the past years have shown that this can indeed be a challenging and costly part of your direct-to-customer business and can often time, represent 3% or more of net sales. Another alternative is outsourcing your customer support services (whether in part or in full) to an eligible 3rd party service provider in order to support your growing business. By opting for an expert outsourcing company, you also assure your company the sound investment and leave customer support in the hands of capable representatives.

There are a number of ways customer support outsourcing can enable profitability for your business. Read out below to find the various advantages of this move along with how your company can enjoy a sound financial future.

Comparatively Much Lower Cost per Call

As a business leader, do you know your costs? No, I am not talking about the hourly labor rate but the total cost per transaction which also includes-

a) Payroll and benefits costs for agents, supervisors and management

b) IT systems and software

c) Telecom

d) HR recruiting and training (including employee turnover)

e) Space and utility costs

Calculate these to understand your costs per transaction, order and call. Now, when you compare these costs with outsourcing, you will realise how cheaper your cost per call will be than an internally managed operation. As a result, you can reinvest the saved money into your business thus generating more revenue.

Building Healthy Relationships

If you are thinking that profits only come from customers buying a product, then my friend, you are mistaken. How well the customers relate to your brand and how happily they promote it to their peers also plays an important role in your company’s profitability and overall revenue generation.

By assuring round-the-clock availability to your customers through outsourcing customer support services, you will motivate them to see your brand as something they can rely upon. This further leads to the building of a trustworthy relation along with adding value to your business as well which, in turn, help your business generate more profits.

Focus on Core Competencies

Outsourcing customer support will eventually leave other employees with ample amount of time to focus on other core activities related to company’s growth. How? Without the customer support component to worry about, each leader can focus entirely on the most important aspects of their daily operations. This will eventually lead to professional improvements, developing better quality products, meeting quotas and various other integral aspects of any business, further leading to better profitability and a higher revenue.

Optimizing Your Work Environment

Your business cannot function efficiently if your employees aren’t performing accordingly. Yes, it’s true, you may not know but profits also come from well-rested workers. And outsourcing your customer support services does exactly that.

I. Your IT-related services can be limited to the very needs of established departments.

II. Your managers and board members will be exempt from planning strategies that involve customer services.

All the departments and related employees simply have to check with the outsourcing firms to ensure whether teams actions align with what was expected of them or not. This will further add up to the promise of work-life balance and in due time, lead your motivated team to promising results and a higher revenue for your company.

Long-Term Strategic Planning

Long-term growth is something every business whether small or large looks forward to. However, long-term growth also requires a long-term planning (which is justifiable) because, over time, your business will grow and with it the responsibilities as well but will your in-house customer service team grow that easily? The probability is probably low. Though, if you go for an outsourcing company, you won’t have to worry about this as call centers always have a ready pool of staff. Also, they are well used to growing in accordance with the growing demands of client companies. So, your needs might increase but your expenses won’t (at least not enough to matter).

Conclusion:

Profitability is something that moves any company forward and toward other related goals. But efficiently managing the costs and expenses that come with it is what contribute mostly to generating revenue and maintaining them in the right balance. No wonder, customer support plays such an integral role in attaining and retaining the target market.

Original Source: https://www.theoctopustech.com/role-of-customer-support-outsourcing-in-revenue-generation/

How Call Centers are Shaping the Real Estate Industry of Today

While most of the real estate professionals happily look forward to visiting properties with their trusted clients, there are only a handful of realtors who consent to the task of cold calling, an equally important task which helps them gain new clients. Though real estate cold calling is a simple task that helps them build a business, nonetheless it requires skilled agents on your part to increase the customer base.

Hold on, if you are thinking here of maintaining a dedicated in-house team of cold calling professionals, do not forget to add on the extra cost of hiring and training these agents, keeping them on regular payrolls, providing them various employee benefits along with furnishing them with infrastructure and extra office space to name a few.

However, outsourcing real estate cold calling to a professional service provider can be the best bet if what you’re looking for is to improve profits and reduce overhead costs. Why outsourcing? Because these firms are already well versed in all the cold calling guidelines and possess the required skills to tactfully pursue the prospects.

Moving forward, let’s have a look at what else the real estate industry has to gain by outsourcing its call center department to professional service providers:

Answering Service

Call center agents undertake all the inbound and outbound calls, leaving you ample time to evaluate opportunities and close more deals.

a) In today’s highly competitive real estate market, it’s far better to allow your customers to reach an actual live person in real time rather than relying on automated voicemail systems.

b) Since call centers agents have years of experience handling thousands of calls from home and business prospects looking to buy and sell a property, they impart their knowledge to help these prospects make a decision.

c) Call center agents are well known for offering personalized services and are experts in developing a script well suited to your clients’ needs be it buying, selling, loan modifications, cash investing or mitigation inquiries.

Customer Service

With the help of real estate call center services, you can easily provide your customers with a courteous and responsive 24/7 support without sacrificing your freedom.

a)Since real estate transactions usually involve huge sums of money, it only seems logical to use call center agents that excel in building trust with customers instead of using autonomous voicemails.

b)Another benefit is, call center agents utilize client databases and web portals used on a daily basis in order to provide your customers with accurate and up to date information without disturbing you.

c)The ultimate benefit is gaining the trust of your clients who know that even if they cannot speak directly to you, you are within reach whether they need assistance after work hours or on weekends.

Lead Processing

As you set up your marketing campaign, the leads will start flowing in. With a professional call center processing your real estate leads, you can easily capture every detail without even picking up your phone.

a) One of the many benefits of outsourcing your real estate lead processing is that it allows you to focus only on your business without missing important phone calls or losing leads.

b) A professional call center agent works as an extension of your business and follows your specific instructions to offer a customizable solution along with letting you determine what information to be collected and how to deliver it to your business.

c) Call center software integrates directly with CRM to allow you to directly input leads into your system. These technologies are what make lead processing an efficient and seamless addition to your operation.

Appointment Scheduling

To avoid scheduling appointments from becoming an expensive distraction, outsource your call center services to ensure that all your appointment related phone calls are handled professionally.

a) Today, most people simply do not have time to schedule during your working hours. But with call center services, you can easily accommodate all your clients’ scheduling needs at a time most convenient to them and make more profits in turn.

b) While call centers help your customers schedule their appointments, you can refocus your staff to concentrate on other important tasks such as creating specs or working out some billing issue.

c) Call center software is also quite flexible which can not only be easily integrated with your existing scheduling software to accommodate any scheduling scenarios but can also send you instant updates and any vital personal regarding the booking time.

Closing Thoughts:

Now we know that real estate cold calling requires professionals with a necessary set of skills to give you the ability to remain open 24/7 and carry out the sensible conversation with the prospects regarding the properties for rent, lease, buy or sell along with taking advantage of every potential opportunity that comes your way. Thus, it becomes highly imperative for real estate firms to adopt the services of a renowned call center in order to ensure that all leads are captured and followed up properly for high conversion ratio.

Original Source: https://www.theoctopustech.com/how-call-centers-are-shaping-the-real-estate-industry-of-today/

How Call Centers are Shaping the Future of Restaurant Industry

If your primary wish involves getting your restaurant recognized as one that is known for valuing its guests among its competitors then it is extremely important that you start addressing your customers complaints, feedbacks, and doubts in a proactive manner.

However, achieving something like this is not at all easy, not since the booming current trend of ordering online food (with the help of various online order portals) that had transformed the hospitality industry into a digital entity. These online order portals have upped the game by great degrees, providing its users, not just amazing discount offers along with ensuring timely deliveries but also taking their feedbacks very seriously.

In order to fight off this tide of increased competition and tight margins, the restaurant industry is constantly on the lookout for solutions that can help bring down costs. This solution must be able to overcome these 4 main hurdles –

1) Rising labor costs

2) Increased food expenses

3) Meeting high expectations of customer service

4) Less than robust growth

Though these hurdles only seem to have bothered small and medium-sized restaurants till now as the largest food chains across the country are already availing services (such as catering, takeouts, and call-in-orders) from Restaurant Call Centers for quite some time now. But times are changing, and we are seeing off-track restaurant call centers also gaining popularity among fast casual, quick service and fine dining restaurants.

For those of you who are unfamiliar, a restaurant call center provides services that include outsourcing certain operational functions normally associated with the restaurant industry to 3rd party vendors located elsewhere.

Why Your Restaurant Need a Call Center?

One fact that the restaurant staff understands very well is that the peak time when customers call to book a table for upcoming meals is usually the peak time when the staff is at its busiest (mostly during lunch and dinner time).

Handling the order taking process by yourself or a staff member at these hours means keeping one host waiting while attending other, or often times as is the case, leaving the phone unattended while helping customers with seating. This, needless to say, looks unprofessional and generally lead customers to call the next best option on their list.

And the end result? Your customer ends up getting his table booked at his ‘next best option’ and you end up with a missed revenue opportunity because you missed that call. You do understand it’s a lose-lose situation for everyone, right?

How can a Restaurant Call Center Help with Reservation Process?

Since childhood, we are familiar with the phrase, “the first impression is already half the battle won”. Well, its time to put it to good use.

a) It’s comparatively much lower in cost hiring call centers to help your restaurant instead of pouring lots of money and time while setting up an in-house team.

b) Call centers hire experts that undergo stringent training programs to provide a professional voice to your restaurant and thus help build better brand value.

c) Call centers offer top levels of security that helps to maintain the confidentiality in terms of conversation that any business had with its clients.

d) Since call centers are well-versed with customer dealing, chances of them making a mistake while taking order details and passing it on to the restaurant staff is non-existent.

e) If you manage to provide your customers a first-rate service experience, they also return the favor by preferring your establishment over others along with increasing the order size.

As we have seen in many businesses, a customer’s choice is determined by the company’s professional look (in this case, restaurant’s). So, providing a business phone number will only serve as an icing on the cake.

A Tip: Choose a number that’s easy-to-use, it’s even better if you choose one that represents your restaurant’s motto or its name.

So, is that all? Well no, there’s one last thing left.

How Restaurant Call Centers Handle Customer Feedback?

What do you think customers do at your restaurant after finishing their lunch or dinner? Do they go off to work, home or whatever place they intend to go? Well, yes of course. But after they posted comments on social media about how good or bad your service or the quality of your food really was. And believe me, the only thing that tarnishes the reputation of your restaurant worse than a negative feedback is your ignorance towards it.

Here too, the restaurant call center services come to your rescue by real-time monitoring what is being said about your business and responding immediately. If the comments are positive, call center agents will thank them share them further with your followers, if not, the agents will address the issue immediately and show that you care, thus keep the situation under control.

Conclusion

It doesn’t matter which industry you belong to, call centers offer perfect solutions that range from handling phone calls to social media support to managing multiple communication channels and as a result, can greatly elevate your restaurant’s performance and revenue collection.

Original Source: http://www.theoctopustech.com/2018/05/how-call-centers-are-shaping-the-future-of-restaurant-industry/

How Call Centers help Reduce Operating Costs of Business

While looking to grow or expand your business, hiring a dedicated call center to contract out your customer support service can give your business the very edge it needs to move ahead of the competition. The business industry already understands this fact well enough that companies who outsource gain much in terms of reduced costs and a larger workforce. Some of the other reasons why businesses love outsourcing includes-

a) Calls centers have the capacity to run your company’s operations such as entering into the new market or increasing reach.

b) Can easily scale your business up and down according to current marketing needs.

c) Help acquire additional skills.

d) Extend businesses multilingual capabilities.

And many more…

As we can see, opting to outsource your customer support service can help you avail many such benefits for both your company and customers. But what of its cost-effectiveness? No business cannot operate for long without money. To answer this, I have mentioned below 3 important reasons in order to explain how hiring call centers can help improve the cost-effectiveness or, in other words, reduce the operating costs for your business apart from making profits.

1) No Extra Office Space-

It doesn’t matter whatever city you are operating from, extra office space always takes away a huge chunk of money from your pocket. Even if you are thinking about expanding your in-house customer support department, it’s still going to cost you a hefty sum.

But if you plan to outsource your call center services to countries such as India, Philippines, Ukraine etc. you won’t ever have to worry about spending another dime on renting office space.

2) No Loss of Business Outside Office Hours-

We all know how frustrating it can get when we are unable to contact a business whenever we wish to. It’s just that every time some issue arises, the customer’s calling time seem to match the time you are offline and customer frustration can ultimately lead to loss of business.

Wouldn’t it be better if this could somehow be avoided? Well, as it turned out, hiring a call center will render round-the-clock support service which will keep your customers happy and your revenue stream steady.

3) No Employee Management Salaries-

Though businesses love to be a source of jobs, it’s a bitter truth that employees are expensive. Just employing the in-house call center managers can easily set you back up to $5,000 a month and this doesn’t even include the cost of recruiting, training and managing the team members.

But if you hire an outsourcing firm, you can save all this money simply because call centers come already equipped with managers, employees, CTOs, CFOs etc. so you don’t have to worry about paying them from your pocket.

4) No More Employee Call-Outs-

No matter how responsible and reliable employees work for you, nobody can make it to work every day. They all have their personal lives which will sometimes lead to last minute days off from work. And you will be left spending valuable time trying to find replacements.

So, if you are outsourcing your customer support service to a call center, worrying about last minute employee call outs is yet another thing you can tick off from your checklist.

5) No More Employee Benefits-

As a business owner, have you ever noticed how much you pay every month for employee benefits and compensation for facilities such as insurance plans, paid vacations, retirement plans, maternity leaves etc.

By offshoring your call center, you can easily and effectively deviate all those expensive employee benefits to that third-party outsourcing firm you hired in the first place and, as a result, save loads of money in the process.

Closing Thoughts:

Finally, in the end, your decision to outsource shouldn’t be a complicated one. Apart from all the money-saving ways I mentioned above through which you can easily reduce your business’s operational costs, you also get skilled expertise to work for you at a reasonable rate, not to mention the improvements you will get regarding the business operations.

Original Source: https://www.theoctopustech.com/how-call-centers-help-reduce-operating-costs-of-business/

Steps to Track Your Call Center’s Performance Using KPIs

Call center monitoring is an ongoing procedure of collecting data, analyzing it and giving feedback. Since it directly affects the customer satisfaction, employee retention, and your bottom line, it is essential to carefully navigate the implementation of certain KPIs or Key Performance Indicators into your call center working strategy to work to your advantage.

We understand being a contact center manager is a tough job as apart from managing your team, you have to successfully identify and choose from the vast pool of metrics, your KPIs to measure the overall performance and measure them accurately along with a focus on improving your key metrics to make your call center services thrive.

Step 1

Before diving any further into the list of suitable KPIs, let’s have a look at the few things you should consider before choosing your key metrics.

1) What is the type of your call center, is it related to sales, service or support?

2) Are you assisting your agents with necessary feedback to help them provide excellent service to your customers?

3) Empathy and rapport building is essential in engaging customers, are your agents providing that?

4) Do you expect different queue time depending on the channel?

5) Can metrics be used more effectively to personalize interactions with customers?

Step 2

The previous step outlined the need for a game plan, once that’s sorted, you will know which KPIs to track in order to yield the most value and actionable insight. Below are mentioned some such KPIs to choose from.

a) Operational Efficiency Metric is the overall measure of the capability of the call center to deliver services to its customers in the most cost-effective way possible while still maintaining the quality of the support service.

b) Average Handle Time or AHT is the average duration of one transaction taken during the initiation of a customer’s call to the end moment till the issue is resolved. It includes any hold time, talk time and related tasks that follow the transaction.

c) Wrap-up Time is the follow-up process that includes the measurement of the time spent by an agent performing ACW or After Call Work once the transaction is over. It also includes entering notes or any tasks related to the closure of the customer-related

d) Forecast Accuracy basically provides us with a simple measure to help us access the quality of our forecasts. It enables you to forecast calls correctly in order to ensure you are not under or overstaffed at any given time.

e) Cost Metrics measure how well the contact center is managing their costs which also involve operating expenses along with costs per call, agent attrition (customer loss due to retirement and resignation of employees) and agent absenteeism

f) Customer Satisfaction is a metric that measures how the support services provided by a call center meet or surpass a customer’s expectation. It is essential as it provides the contact center manager with a metric that he can use to manage or improve his call center

g) First Call Resolution is keeping the tracks of every inbound and outbound call that addresses the customer’s needs during the first time, thereby eliminating the need to call again thus ensuring satisfaction in shortest time.

h) Self Service Usage is the track keeping of customers that are using self-service options to resolve their own issues without the need to get in touch with the service agent.

i) Average Wait Time is the average amount of time customers wait in a waiting queue before an agent addresses their calls.

j) Agent Performance KPI measures the performance of help desk agents by tracking the effectiveness of the agent using various metrics such as-

  • Agent Job Satisfaction
  • Agent Tenure
  • Training Hours for New Agents
  • Annual Agent Training Hours

Step 3

Now, last but not the least, since we know what areas to work on and what are some of the top KPIs to choose from, let’s learn a bit about KPIs in general in order to better utilize its applications.

a) Use KPIs to enhance your knowledge about the workings of various platforms and channels.

b) Use KPI to track the NEV (Net Emotional Value) in order to better serve your customers.

c) Understand that in this ever-changing world, you need to change KPIs on a daily basis to meet the current requirements.

d) Use 2 or 3 KPIs to generate better results as no single KPI can guarantee 100% performance.

Closing Thoughts

You cannot hope to track all the indicators at once as it would be too time-consuming, and the amount of data would be completely useless to examine for human analysts. You would miss the forest looking for trees.

What you can do is create a scorecard of performance aspirations and quality control and focus on one or two KPIs for each study period.

Original Source: https://www.theoctopustech.com/steps-to-track-your-call-centers-performance-using-kpis/