Importance of Call Centers

Nowadays, customers with queries can contact companies via email, webchat, texting, and social media services. Which is why you may wonder, who even uses call centers these days? A survey by EConsultancy states that more than 61% customers still prefer phones to reach out.This is because they are the most traditional approach to connect with an organization. People rely on customer-care agents for help when they face problems. Also, it is the only contact customers have with the company representatives. And what makes a call center work smoothly? An efficient call center agent. If a call center has to be at its best, it is important to have optimum call center agent performance metrics.

Why is their Agent Performance Unsatisfactory?

Companies are facing a hard time providing the best customer service. Most of the time, the agents receive many calls at once, which leads to some callers being put on hold. Delay in problem resolution frustrates the customers and the quality of customer service deteriorates. Also, being a call center agent can be mentally and physically demanding due to:

  1. Exhausting jobs
  2. Monotonous tasks
  3. Hectic schedules
  4. Working on tiny and squeezed budgets

All of this takes a toll on their performance. As a result, companies are looking for ways to improve. For this, they need to adapt to some ways to make their call center agent performance skyrocket.

10 ways to improve call center agent performance:

1. Providing effective training regularly

Regular training will bring them together and keep them up-to-date with changes in policies, procedures, safety programs, software, and hardware. It will offer the representatives a chance to see, hear, and take an interest in exercises that help the work environment. Effectively trained agents are much more likely to resolve the customers’ queries. This, subsequently, will make the customer experience better.

2. Monitoring agent performance with speech analytics:

Speech analytics, or speech-to-text,  is a technology in the market that can help you to monitor conversations easily without having to listen manually. With the speech-to-text technology, each conversation will be converted into text and will instantly be available for analysis. Companies can use it to:

  1. Survey and understand the context of calls
  2. Know the intent of the customer
  3. Spot keywords
  4. Get useful business-specific insights and leads
  5. Know which agents need training by making sure they follow rules
  6. Check for missing keywords in conversations

This not only help the agents to focus on their weaknesses but will improve their performance.

3. Giving incentives:

Being rewarded for working harder is the easiest way to motivate the agents to give their best. They can be rewarded with:

  1. Raises
  2. Bonuses
  3. Profit sharing
  4. Signing bonus
  5. Stock options
  6. Materialized gifts

It will create a positive environment in the workplace along with providing friendly competition. This will also take the boredom out of their jobs and they will try to perform better.

4. Enacting role-play scenarios:

The agents can be provided with certain problematic situations. Enacting them together in a role-play will make them learn how to handle difficult situations effectively and quickly. It will also encourage teamwork and will stimulate their brains in various ways.

5. Using Speech Analysis:

Speech Analysis tools are providing a way to analyze and evaluate the calls. Analyzed audio data will be useful in various scenarios like:

  1. Checking Agent’s Script Adherence
  2. Real-time evaluation of customer’s buying propensity
  3. Predicting potential buyers by analyzing past behavior
  4. Determining customer satisfaction level
  5. Understanding caller intent
  6. Analyzing customer sentiment

6. Optimizing call routing:

Designing a better call-routing system can help the customers connect to the best agents for their initial inquiries. It will save the time of re-routing the call to several agents before coming to a solution. This will create a good impression on the customers and help build their trust. They will be more likely to use your services again, knowing that you provide a seamless customer experience.

7. Replacing call-wait with call-back:

Being put on hold is the worst part of a customer service experience. Studies show that more than 40% of today’s customers say it’s their biggest frustration. Long hold times also leads to a loss in business. Customers are more likely to wait for a call-back at a scheduled time, rather than being put on hold. More than 75% of today’s customers prefer being called back than being put on hold, according to Forrester Research.

This problem can easily be solved by taking some measures. Companies can send alerts to the customers on hold, telling them that they will receive a call-back at a certain time. This will improve the customer experience as the customers will know when their problem will be solved. Also, the burden on the agents will reduce and they will perform better.

8. Segmenting customers:

Routing the right customers with the right agents will undoubtedly improve customer satisfaction. Customers will be speaking to a skilled agent who can respond to their queries easily. It will make their experience better as the agent will be personalized for them and moreover, this will give job-satisfaction to agents.

9. Sharing best calls with the entire team:

Best rated calls by the customers can be shared with the entire team to set an example. It will help the agents know exactly what are the expectations of the customer. It will also boost the confidence of those agents whose calls are shared.

10. Using AI to help agents:

Many technologies are coming up in the market to ease the agents’ jobs. Artificial Intelligence voice bots, with the help of call center automation, can easily handle basic queries of the customers. This way, agents can avoid wasting their time on routine questions and focus on major problems. Agents and AI will work hand-in-hand to provide the best possible customer service experience. Subsequently, it will reduce the burden on the agents as well and their jobs will become easier.

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