From Consumers’ Perspective: Top 3 Customer-Inspired Best Practices for a Contact Center

Customer-Inspired Best Practices for a Contact Center
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If look up “Call center best practices” on the web, you will come across thousands of article telling you exactly the same things – determining goals, hiring the right people, training and  motivating them, understanding the metrics and  so on and  so forth.  All these are very important. But there is also another perspective of determining best practices.

Let us put it this way, all we do in a call center is to interact with our client’s customers and potential customers.  So, shouldn’t their perspective be taken into consideration?  Do contact center managers listen to the customers’ needs, wants and thoughts?

Marketing guru Martha Rogers have summed up customer expectation beautifully in one line-

People want what they want when they want it.”

Being the lifeline of a business, your customers, should be the first one you should think of when considering best practices. As per a benchmark research report by ForeSee, that states the impact customer satisfaction has on success of a call center

  • Highly satisfied consumers are 174% more likely to make contact again than less satisfied customers
  • They are 154% more likely to purchase next time
  • 238% more likely to recommend the company to friends and family members

So, it means that a call center is more likely to succeed if they exceed customer expectations.  And how exactly can they do it? Let’s find out:

Top 3 Customer Inspired Best Practices for the Contact Center

1. Share Information:

Customers get irritated when information given to the IVR (such as -account number, name, etc.) is lost once their call is transferred to an agent. And they have to repeat the information.  This issue also takes place in case of a multichannel call center.

When a customer switches communication channels, their information provided to the previous channel do not get carried away to the new channel, and they have to provide the information once again.  Now that is surely frustrating.

Thankfully, with more and more call center turning Omni-channel, this problem will soon be a thing of past. In case of Omni-channel call center, the information provided to a channel will seamlessly transfer to another channel along with other related data to another channel when a customer switches the channel.

2. Better IVR Experience:

Is your IVR system so complicated that the customers have to shoot arrows in the dark to reach a live agent? If yes, then you are doing it wrong. A complicated IVR is not the right way to treat your customers.  It makes the callers feel frustrated and minimizes the customers chance to get a quick solution to their problems.

In case the customer is calling using a smartphone app or web widget, a business can always give them the opportunity of visual IVR.  This will allow the customers to navigate at their own pace and find out what they want and then contact the concerned department.

3. Eliminate Hold Time:

Long hold time is often detrimental to customer satisfaction. It makes the customer feel that their time is not respected. This upsets them.  And when they reach an agent, they are already cranky and irritable.  So, even a minor issue can trigger an outburst at that time.

Giving the customers an option to get a call-back can be a possible solution to the problem. Virtual queuing them the option of a scheduled call-back and allow callers select a time that works best for them.  This way, you can eliminate hold time and make customers happy.

These are some possible solutions to some of the most crucial call center issues from the perspective of the customers. Thankfully, these issues can be avoided with a little change in the way call centers deal with each customer.