14 Apr Five tools every contact centre needs
Let’s be honest: the traditional call centre doesn’t have a great reputation. They’re still associated with long waiting times, dissatisfied customers, and factory-like conditions where tired staff churn through call after call. This practice still happens, but we’re pleased to say it’s more of an exception than a rule. There are other ways to do it now, which are better for customers, for staff and for business.
Before we explain how, it’s worth reflecting briefly on why contact centres exist in the first place. The idea is to separate customer service and communication from other areas of the business. This means that customer queries are handled promptly by a dedicated service, while other administrative tasks aren’t slowed down by constant calls. For any business that handles a large volume of customer queries, this is clearly useful. But if the service is inefficient and staff and customers are unhappy, then it benefits no one!
So how to avoid that? Of course you need a great team and workplace culture. But the tools you use are just as important, if not more so. That’s where we come in, and it’s why we’ve written this blog. You don’t need to be tied to ageing on-premise hardware. You can have a highly efficient cloud contact centre that keeps you flexible, scalable and ready to help customers whenever they need. To help you get there, we’re listing our five favourite tools.
1, Unified Communications
To explain tool number one, we should first explain the difference between a call centre and a contact centre. Call centres are more traditional and entirely phone-based. A contact centre is more dynamic, and provides multi-channel communication: calls, of course, but also instant messaging and email. This reduces call congestion, and enables you to handle simpler queries much faster. As well as these efficiency benefits, customers really appreciate more communication options. So how to offer it?
The answer is unified communications (UC). What this does is to put all channels of communication into a single platform, so you can seamlessly move from instant messaging to voice and video calls. Better still, you can integrate it with your CRM, so that you can see all the info you have on anyone who calls before you answer. At One Connectivity, we offer UC solutions that are hosted in the cloud. This contact centre software (as opposed to hardware) allows you to offer the same great service remotely, and is easily scalable.
The whole point of a contact centre is efficiency. The name of the game is managing customer service and communication quickly. But this isn’t as simple as it sounds. In order to do it, you need to know some basics: when do your call volumes increase, how long are your callers are waiting to get through and how long are your call durations? These are some of the fundamentals that tell you how you’re performing and how to allocate resources. Without these insights, you’re in the dark and much less likely to deliver the service your customers expect. That’s bad for them, and bad for business.
Luckily, it doesn’t have to be that way.
At One Connectivity, we offer powerful analytics tools that make all this easy. You can view a wide range of KPIs in real time on individuals, hunt groups, departments or your entire business. In addition, you can have customisable call reports sent to you automatically at regular intervals of your choice. This means you can make informed decisions about how you manage resources. That means better service for your customers, which in turn benefits your business. Best of all, it’s incredibly easy to use. It’s cloud-hosted, which means you can get all the info you need from anywhere, with just a few clicks.
3, Call Recording
Unfortunately, complaints are unavoidable in business. Of course we should do what we can do avoid them, but they will happen. But they are also an opportunity to show customers you take them seriously. If you’re quick, thorough and transparent, it’s actually possible to make a customer feel more valued and satisfied when you resolve a complaint. In order to do that, you need to know what was said and when. This is where call recording comes in.
At One Connectivity, we offer call recording software that’s user-friendly and accessible from any device. You can easily find the calls you need, with the option to search by user, caller, date and time. Then you just click and play. As well as complaint resolution, call recording is great for staff training and essential for sampling and quality assurance. And with One Connectivity, it’s easy.
4, On-hold Messaging
An efficient contact centre will keep on-hold times down, but you can’t eliminate them altogether. So the question is what callers hear when they’re waiting. All too often, businesses choose music that doesn’t match the professionalism of their service. Not only can this be irritating for customers, but it adds no value either. On-hold messaging gives you the option to change that.
Essentially, on-hold messaging means playing recorded messages to on-hold callers. Sounds simple, but it offers so much. On-hold callers are a captive audience with an interest in your business. If you can alert them to any promotions or offers you have, you’re pretty much marketing without any effort. You can also use it to provide any other info you like, ensuring that both you and your customers get something useful out of that on-hold time! At One Connectivity, we make it easy. You simply send your scripts, and we’ll get them recorded by a professional voice actor of your choice.
Last but not least, resilience. This isn’t a single tool like the others on our list, but it’s the backbone of any contact centre nonetheless. When we say “resilience”, we’re thinking of your whole infrastructure. A contact centre runs on a backbone of cabling and internet connectivity. You really, really need this to be reliable and has the capacity for your purposes. Any outage means downtime, which in turn means a backlog of disgruntled customers.
At One Connectivity, we’re specialists in making sure this doesn’t happen. As well as cloud contact centre tools, we are experts at providing the infrastructure that helps them run. We can spec out your premises along with your business needs, and can ensure you’ve got the capacity to run at full speed – whether we’re providing cabling, ultra-fast Wi-Fi or any other infrastructure.
How can One Connectivity help?
Contact centres can really add value for businesses and customers alike, but it’s essential that you get the basics right. We can help with every step. We pride ourselves on honesty, and our ability to provide bespoke support to businesses according to their needs.
As specialists in business communications, we can offer everything we’ve discussed here and more. If you want to get more out of your contact centre, just get in touch on 0115 896 88 60.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row]