Obviously, every business is different, however across the board the two major departments in need of call center services are customer service and sales. The latter is responsible for scheduling appointments, taking orders and interacting with marketers who wish to advertise with a company. Customer service support makes itself available for feedback from customers. They may also make outgoing calls to customers who have not left a response on their own. With some businesses they may act as dispatchers, improving communication between employees and making sure each is aware of their personal goals for the day. Customer service support doesn’t need to communicate exclusively with phones. They may also handle the email for the company.
In the past, call centers have been huge capital investments that required a large floor space. Making updates to a call center was a frequent expenditure. By leveraging the power of cloud communications, companies can now turn over the maintenance and system upgrades to their service providers, such as RingOver. Virtual call center software, such as the one powered by RingOver are a great tool to increase mobility and lower hardware costs. These apps can be downloaded to a variety of devices and used in lieu of desk phones to make and receive calls. This feature is becoming increasingly popular with small businesses as no additional equipment is necessary.
Many customer service professionals can easily rattle off many of the benefits of a cloud-based call center: scalability, lower total cost, flexibility and mobility, and many more. But, it is only after a cloud call center software solution is implemented that customers and business owners alike see many of the real “ah-ha” benefits.
Professional call center analytics
Call volume- One of the most immediate benefits is vision into your true call volume. Many managers are not aware that they do not have enough capacity to handle all of their inbound calls. Their customers were getting a busy signal instead of reaching the company. This ultimately means that the company has been leaving money on the table. Once an organization moves to a call center software solution, it is able to see what is really happening. It can see how many calls are in queue, how long callers are waiting, how many abandoned calls there are, and much more. Once leadership sees this data, they can make the appropriate strategic changes to accommodate the demand.
Track peak days- Every business will experience peaks and valleys. With a premise-based system, they could only estimate those peaks and valleys. But, with a call center software solution, they can now literally see their peak days and times, and managers can adjust staffing schedules and break times accordingly.
Monitor internal performance- The other way that a cloud-based call center helps to improve an organization is the visibility it provides managers into the productivity levels of the employees, and tools to assist with training and performance development. Managers can see all the performance statistics for everybody which leads to better decision-making.
The hosted call center platform also provides the opportunity to directly improve customer service. For example, because managers can now see calls that have been abandoned – as well as how long each caller waited before abandoning – they can proactively call back those callers to follow up and assist them.
Team training for sales and support
Call recordings- Call recording is vastly underused for coaching and quality control. Many decision-makers mistakenly think it’s only good for mitigating legal risks and complying with rules and regulations. But call recordings can help leadership determine the strengths and weaknesses of sales or support staff members. Businesses can often improve results just by empowering managers and employees to review call recordings so team members can hear themselves and strategize ways to improve service. Listening to call recordings is especially helpful when there is an opportunity to review a recording involving a disgruntled customer.
Without a call recording, the discussion could become a “he said, she said” scenario, and then it’s very difficult to strategize ways to prevent similar future misunderstandings. And these days, when most of the customers are quite capable of making their own recordings and posting them on social media, companies need to know exactly what customers experience when they call. Another benefit is that management can listen to call recordings to help determine the types of training needed at the employee, team or overall department level.
Call intervention- Letting managers listen in on live agent calls from their headsets or mobile devices helps supervisors pinpoint agent trouble spots, and offer advice on the fly via whispers or text messages. Recording a call on demand also lets supervisors send the call recording in the form of an email with commentary that can be reviewed later.
Coaching and learning- Last but certainly not least is the coaching and learning is a major benefit. Managers will have all the data they need to pull it off: voice, audio, call recording snippets, documents, and more. Delivering the right learning content at the right time is highly important, but employees also need to focus on information retention. Managers can then leverage the individual call records during the annual employee review cycle to lighten the workload associated with annual employee reviews and reinforce the customer experience vision.
It takes commitment to ingrain customer experience expectations into all customer interactions. But when all customer support personnel fully understand the customer experience vision and model it during every customer interaction, your team will become one that creates differentiation for your department, brand and organization, which leads to greater customer loyalty and in turn a greater share of the customers’ wallets.
Customer experience and satisfaction
Customer feedback- By being in direct contact with customers, it is easy to find out what is that they like and don’t like about the way the company is run. This information can be used to improve areas that the customers are complaining about while keeping the areas that customers are happy with running effectively. It can be considered free market research which is crucial to the continued success of a company.
Skill based routing- It is possible with call centre software to have an idea of what kind of customer is on the other side of the line, such as home language, in order to use an appropriate agent to service them. This will often lead to greater customer satisfaction as well as better call turn-around times. Skills can be assigned to an agent on the system and then the call can be automatically routed to an available agent with the best skill set to handle a particular customer.
Personalised messages to customers- A dash of personalization can go a long way in bridging the gap between a customized service experience and a static one. Simple things like having personalized greetings or pre-defining language preference of a customer can do much more than adding a personal touch.
Custom call queues- Call queues allow businesses to route calls to the appropriate department, team, or individual. This reduces the amount of time wasted from transferring calls and will help your customers get the help they need from agents with the appropriate skill set.
Extended reach beyond working hours- When conducting business internationally, consideration must be given as to the differences in time zones. Companies that use call center services are able to have agents available for their customers on an around-the-clock basis. This means that customers in any area across the globe are able to connect with the business at their own convenience.
For many businesses, offering this same measure of convenience without a cloud call center is not feasible because of the heightened expense of running a 24-hour operation. Hosted call centers can handle any after-hours customer inquiries the business might receive.
Positive impression on customers- Most business owners recognize the fact that excellent customer service is vital to the success of their business. They know word-of-mouth advertising increases when customers are impressed with the quality of service. Dissatisfied customers are more likely to be very active in warning potential customers to stay away from a company. Using a call center software is one way to ensure customers receive the best service, as it can help represent your business in a professional manner.
Business Integration- Cloud-based call centers allow small businesses to integrate their various business tools together to create one powerful platform. These third-party applications, such as CRM software, can transfer data seamlessly between the different tools and enable click-to-call functionality.
No hardware required- Unlike the premise-based applications which require a huge infrastructural set-up, the cloud solutions do not require any additional hardware. All it needs is a software that is uploaded on the cloud. All the information and the data are stored over there and as a result, the business house does not require any additional multiple pieces of equipment.
Scalability- It is essential that the company adapts to the changes in the business cycle. It must be adjustable to the changing dynamics of the organization. Outsourcing to a traditional contact center can prove to be a costly affair when it comes to being scalable. Huge investment is required both in terms of technology as well as infrastructure.
After call time- With the use of professional call centre software, the after call time is not considered as dead time but is an integral part of the call. Modern call center software automatically provides after call time so that your agents can have that moment to complete their task.
Deployment time- Different from the traditional model, the cloud solution has less deployment time and can easily be configured in a matter of few hours. They are not only faster but are also simpler to organize. Unlike the premise software that can take months to set up, this operating system can sometimes be set up within a few hours. The time for installation also depends on the level of complexity of the application. Not only is the set-up time reduced, but the resources required to install are also limited.
Robust data collection- Agents need to know about the customer and the interactions that they had, in order to maintain continuity in the communication. The cloud solution allows them to have all the data at their disposal without much delay. They can have access to customer reports, their preferences and with the historical reporting feature even have a gist of the earlier interactions.
Extra manpower for other projects- The majority of companies don’t maintain a staff dedicated solely to the handling of in-coming customer calls. They might train their team on how to provide excellent customer service over the phone, but answering calls can hinder employees from completing other important tasks.
Leaving the in-house staff to deal with inbound calls can result in a major breakdown in efficiency. Companies that utilize call center services get to reserve their in-house manpower for other areas of their operations, boosting productivity and profits.