Five Scary Contact Center Interactions to Banish This Halloween

As we prepare to ward off ghouls and ghosts on October 31, are you certain your contact center isn’t haunted by some frightening phantoms of its own?

Some Communicator behaviors, as well as some contact center processes, can spook your customers if they don’t meet customer expectations. Here are five scary things to unmask in your contact center this Halloween:

  1. Improper emotional responses: Your Communicators are expected to possess great communication skills. This involves the capacity to relate to customers professionally as well as to connect with them emotionally. An angry and/or frustrated customer must be given empathy by a calm Communicator who works efficiently to resolve the issue. Contact center managers can do a lot to ensure their Communicators meet these standards—beginning with the hiring phase.
  1. Unprepared responses: Some 59 percent of consumers responding to a Harris Poll on customer service calls indicated that they place the most value on quick and correct answers. Yet, Communicators fail to answer their questions 50 percent of the time, according to Harris Interactive. This conundrum indicates the need for contact centers to improve their first call resolution (FCR) rates to meet customer expectations. The best way to do this is with focused Communicator training. FCR will be elusive if Communicators do not possess the necessary product or service knowledge to resolve customer issues. Another important factor is employee engagement. Communicators who feel valued and are recognized for their performance will repeat it at the desired level and motivate others to do so.
  1. Asking customers to repeat themselves: Give your Communicators easy access to customer histories so they don’t have to ask customers to repeat information already provided. A robust customer relationship management (CRM) solution can relay real-time information so Communicators can deliver a stellar customer experience. The majority of today’s enterprises have implemented CRM capabilities to leverage resources and gain a holistic view of the customer. Make sure your business is equipped to keep up with the major players in your space.
  1. Putting customers on hold: Customers don’t like being put on hold. Research shows that even one minute on hold leads to dissatisfaction. The solution is to include a callback option for customers requested to hold. For tips and tricks on initiating an optimal callback strategy, click here.
  1. Slow response: For efficient contact center interactions, Communicators must be trained to multitask. The job requires not only responding to customers directly but inputting data and using reference materials. Training must be built around resolving queries using both soft and technical skills simultaneously. Teach trainees their craft live on the floor in tandem with front line managers for greatest impact; it exposes them to real-life scenarios and ways to handle them. If managers are not trained in mentoring and coaching Communicators, make it a priority.