Components of a Successful Contact Center
BBX CCenter Success
By Gary Audin
“Components of a Successful Contact Center”
There is no single factor that will deliver a successful contact center. Success is made up of technologies, processes, procedures, agent productivity and customer feedback. To deliver a successful contact center, multiple factors need to co-exist and integrate both technology and people. The expectations for the contact center should be clear and rest on a solid foundation, not a piecemeal approach. The technologies chosen will not work unless the agents and management involved are part of the operation forming a partnership with management and the technologies.
Omnichannel is a cross-channel business model and content strategy that companies use to improve their user experience. Omnichannel is an integrated way of thinking about people’s relationships with organizations. The approach has applications in any industry. Omnichannel supersedes multichannel and includes channels such as physical locations, FAQ webpages, social media, live web chats, mobile applications, and telephone communication. Organizations that use omnichannel contend that a customer values the ability to be in contact with a company through multiple avenues at the same time.
Omnichannel benefits include:
- Omnichannel businesses achieve 91% greater year-over-year customer retention rates compared to businesses that don’t. Source: Aspect Software
- Campaigns integrating 4 or more digital channels will outperform single or dual-channel campaigns by 300%. Source: Gartner Research
- Customers will be loyal and return to do business with the contact center organization. This will produce higher profit and revenue.
- Contact center management has to a deal with agent churn. The lower the churn rate, happy agents, and the less investment in training required for new agents.
- The longer the agents remain, the more likely they can rapidly satisfy the customer requirements.
- Well-trained agents can also upsell the customer and on products and services thereby increasing the revenue of the organization.
- Contact centers that continually satisfy customers gain a good reputation which then translates into revenue and profits for the organization.
Read “Omnichannel; Customer, Agent, Organization Benefits” http://www.bbxtech.com/omnichannel-customer-agent-organization-benefits/ for more information on omnichannel contact centers.
The contact center is your customer facing facility. It presents your image and defines how you will satisfy customers. There is a range of best practices that should be followed for contact center success. Thesed best practices include:
- Producing customer loyalty
- Allowing the customer to chooses the contact media
- Deliver low customer churn
- Produce first contact resolution
- Facilitate good brand reputation
- Ensure agent productivity
- Avoid agent churn
- In the EDUcast “Best Practices for CX” http://www.bbxtech.com/educast-best-practices-for-cx/, Mok Bouaazzi, Executive Director at BBX Technologies www.bbxtech.com discusses the goals and challenges faced by contact center managers. He continues with advice about effectively treating customers to the customer’s satisfaction. He points out that proactive calling is important for reducing customer dissatisfaction and can help in first contact resolution. He continues with advice about effectively treating customers to the customer’s satisfaction He points out that proactive calling is important for reducing customer dissatisfaction and can help in first contact resolution..
There are multiple methods to elicit customer feedback. One or more of these should be considered. When you receive the feedback, act upon it quickly, and thank the customer for the comments. Here are some feedback techniques:
- Short form surveys embedded in to apps
- Long form-based surveys separate from apps
- Agent initiated phone calls
- Email responses to customer interactions
- Net Promoter Score surveys = Percent Promoters – Percent Detractors
- Suggestion boards
Organizations solicit feedback from customers. Few convert the feedback into meaningful actions. Organizations should close the loop with the customer, informing them their voice was heard. The dialog, in any form, between the organization and customers can become your biggest growth driver.
The days of the scheduling spreadsheet are gone. Are you one of the contact centers who still use columns and rows to track what agents are doing? Customer’s behaviors change. As customers age, they change their buying patterns. Customers expect better, faster service because other call centers are doing it. You need to ensure that your call centers workflow and agent scheduling responds to these changes. Your call center cannot remain the same when you change your workflow. . You need to make your workflow more efficient, keep your agents happy, and need to continually analyze the workflow to keep improving the call center operation. This is where workflow optimization and management excel. Read “Get the Most out of WFO/M” https://telecomreseller.com/2018/09/19/get-the-most-out-of-wfo-m/.
Workflow optimization and management encompasses a business strategy that focuses on maximizing customer satisfaction and benefits while containing operational costs. WFO/M is supported by applying integrated technologies, cross-functional processes, shared goals, and objectives. This is delivered by providing key data on the performance of the workforce. This is the step for analyzing and managing the workforce and delivering operational efficiency. Optimization will improve the customer experience while managing the costs of a contact center.
Success of a contact center is the responsibility of the contact center manager. It is a result of how managers communicate with their team and how managers track their team’s success through WFO/M reports.
Follow these tips so you can produce timely and effective agent feedback:
- Feedback will be productive and impact the agent if it is immediate. Don’t wait until the next performance review to acknowledge an achievement or hard work.
- Be specific. Use their name. Do not be ambiguous. Describe the actions that lead to the feedback.
- Separate negative and positive feedback.
- When you look at feedback results, ensure you consider the person’s interests as well.
- Be able to demonstrate what the feedback means.
- Listen to the agent’s responses to the feedback.
Unhappy agents lead to unhappy customers.
Contact center managers should ensure their agents are trained, but frequently the training occurs after problems have spread among multiple agents. Then the manager has missed out on real opportunities that can lead to effective agent feedback. You need to monitor your agents to see what works, needs work, and where in real-time. It is better to train an agent to improve their performance when their performance lags instead of asking them why they had such a bad week last week. Knowing when and who are struggling with problems with real-time training and feedback allows managers and to resolve the issue before it becomes a call center wide.
Agents want to do good job. It has been reported that 97% of customer support agents are concerned about their ability to deliver superior service. The agents will deliver superior service when properly trained.