We talked about the importance of customer satisfaction numerous times, and we pointed out that one of the most important factors for making your customers happy is having a reliable call center that’s always available for answering their questions and solving their issues. Working on improving your call center efficiency and the quality of interactions between your customer representatives and your clients is an ongoing process that you should always be focusing on.
The success of a call center is defined from the bottom-up instead of the top-down. In other words, it’s your diligent agents, the people on the front line, are the backbone and the key component of a thriving call center. Improving the individual performance of your agents is what we’ll be focusing on in this article, so keep on reading if you’re keen on finding out how to improve call center customer service and create a positive, long-lasting impression.
Follow these 6 tips for success:
1) Specialize and Utilize Skills-Based Routing
Over time, your employees will showcase an affinity towards particular areas of your business and will develop skills that complement these areas of expertise. You should embrace this and encourage it among all your employees. Specializing allows you to create efficient smaller teams inside your call center, thus allowing you to reroute calls to agents who can best handle the needs of the client on the other side of the call. This is called skills-based routing, and it’s essential when you’re trying to improve call center efficiency and productivity.
2) Give Credit Where Credit Is Due
Good leaders know how and when to deliver praise, especially when praise is due. When an employee shows commitment and dedication, make sure to recognize it and let him or her know how much you appreciate their hard work. When employees feel appreciated, chances are they’ll continue working on improving their performance even further and gaining additional skills that will make them more efficient in performing their duties. Giving praise is just one of the ways how to improve service level in a call center and keep your agents motivated.
3) Provide Feedback
As busy as running a call center can get, you should always find the time to provide personalized feedback to your agents. These 1-on-1 sessions should be tailored to the agent you’re giving feedback to. Reviewing individual performance results and figuring out what makes your agents tick shows that you genuinely care about their success, and consequently, the success of the entire call center team.
4) Utilize Coaching
Having a team leader or a more experienced agent coach, a new and inexperienced agent promotes teamwork and ensures that everyone follows best practice procedures. Coaching is best done via listening to live calls where real-time interventions are done. For example, if a new agent is having trouble in resolving a customer’s issue or is faltering and needs help, the coach can pitch in with advice and give valuable guidance to the agent. In this scenario, both the customer and the new agent will be more than satisfied.
5) Have Enough People Onboard
One of the most obvious ways of improving call center performance is making sure to properly staff agents. Working in a call center can be rewarding, but also very taxing. Having an understaffed and overworked customer service department will quickly burn out your agents and have a negative impact on their efficiency and on the level of service they provide. On top of that, your customers will have to wait longer to get in touch with someone who can help them, thus causing additional frustration. You can resolve this by hiring more agents or by hiring a reliable outsourcing company that can take some of the load off of your existing employees. It’s also a good idea to go through call logs and identify what the busiest times of day for your call center are and then staffing accordingly.
6) Never Stop Investing in Your Agents
We’re sure you have a new agent training program in place that aims to familiarize new employees with the basic procedures and policies, at least that’s how most companies do it. That being said, most companies make the mistake of not continuously investing in further developing their agents. Honing the skills of your agents is not a one-and-done process. Just like industry standards evolve based on changing needs, so should your training processes. Keep your agents up to speed with the latest developments to make sure they are performing as best as they can.
And there you have it, 6 valuable tips on how to improve call center performance. If you’re currently understaffed or you’re looking into other options for handling your customer service department, AnswerHero might be just what you’re looking for. Feel free to check out our page to find out how we can assist you in providing your customers with a first-rate customer service experience.