Creating Cost Effective Customer Care
For over 50 years, working across dozens of consumer and business-to-business product and service categories, DialAmerica has relentlessly honed the efficiency of call center operations. We’ve learned how to maximize service levels, while reducing the cost-per-transaction. In today’s economy, no brand can afford not to have a well trained, closely supervised, highly efficient call center team, supported by superior technology.
Here are five efficiency principles we’ve learned – and acted on – over the years:
- Set benchmarks. Post-call work can be time-consuming. Establish reasonable benchmarks for these tasks. Then monitor performance to ensure that time is not wasted.
- Increase self-service capabilities. Using interactive voice response (IVR) technologies, ask consumers to input identifying information before they reach a live person. But don’t make them repeat this information when your agents speak to them!
- Recruit smartly. Turnover in a call center is highest in the first few weeks as recruits realize what the job really entails. Reduce high levels of early turnover by listening in on new recruits to see how they handle calls, and giving them immediate, helpful feedback.
- Closely supervise. Start new recruits in an ‘incubation group’ with a 1:6 supervisor to rep ratio. As they gain experience, move them into larger teams with a maximum1:12 supervisor to rep ratio.
- Continuously train. Develop ongoing programs to strengthen selling skills, effectively utilize new technologies and address specific marketplace conditions.
Providing superior customer care is a goal of virtually every brand. But there’s a cost to delivering a high service level. There are ways to moderate this cost, however, through efficient operations and business practices.
Hope you enjoyed this month's Dialogue.