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Call centres often draw a lot of criticism from the public, with lots of tales of customers having a negative or frustrating experience, often manifesting itself in customers choosing to avoid interacting with a call centre altogether.
They would avoid interaction with a business and instead choose to deal with a competitor because they might receive better service.
So, what are the different issues that impact call centres that put customers off calling?
Sitting on hold
There’s nothing worse than looking for a solution to a problem, or needing to clarify something with a business, and the only point of contact is via phone. That means every customer has the same point of access and this, in turn, means there is a higher likelihood of having to spend time sat on hold.
Having other avenues for getting in touch, such as call back forms, email and live chat functions on your website, can help to alleviate some of the pressure on a call centre. This, in turn, should make it easier for customers to get in touch and also make your call centre more efficient.
If you have modest call centres, with a smaller number of people on hand to take calls, this means that there’s more time for customers to be sat on hold, growing frustrated and impatient. This in turn can hamper the conversation your business then has with them. That frustration makes potential customers less responsive to suggestions, harder to sell to and more inclined to stop dealing with you.
Having other avenues for getting in touch, such as call back forms, email and live chat functions on your website, can help to alleviate some of the pressure on call centres. This, in turn, should make it easier for customers to get in touch and also make your call centre more efficient.
When you initially call a contact centre, you are often faced with a range of options. This automated process is designed to point customers to the right department to handle their specific query.
These options need to be easily understood and straightforward. Combining multiple services into one department can, at times, mean some areas of your call centre see a much higher volume of calls. This can lead to delays and frustration for customers.
Customers might also not be entirely sure which department their complaint or query should go to. Frequently, people will just select an option in order to speak to someone. This adds unnecessary volume to departments within a call centre and also can lead to a customer being on hold multiple times.
Instead try choosing options which are:
- Simple – sales, billing, order queries, account management etc.
- Singular – try not to combine services into one area. This eases pressure and helps customers find what they need.
Streamlining and simplifying your options can make using your call centre much more intuitive and straightforward for customers, easing confusion and frustration.
In many situations, customers find themselves going over the same information multiple times. This can make customers feel like they haven’t been listened to and makes them feel underappreciated and further frustrated that you have wasted their time.
Customers shouldn’t need to re-tread the same information when they call. Information such as agreed actions, conversations and what communication there has already been with a customer should be logged. This allows any staff member in a call centre to pick up the conversation with a customer and continue to help.
This streamlines services and ties together all of your various forms of communication. It also allows conversations to progress and solutions to be found much more efficiently than always starting at square one.
Making call centres easier
Businesses should try and put other options in place beyond simply having a call centre. This allows you to automate different processes, provide information and resolve issues before a customer needs to pick up the phone.
As part of a sales process, a call centre is a fantastic way to get customers to talk to your sales people. However, managing those leads and sending them to the right places is crucial for making sure you convert leads successfully.
FLG’s dedicated software can help make lead management easier to handle, which, in turn, helps your team focus their efforts on the best possible leads to track and pursue. Our toolset can:
- Use powerful workflows to automate call centre sales processes
- Efficiently process leads to help a team follow up and achieve more sales
- Integrate with other software platforms, including Trello, MailChimp, Quickbooks, and Campaign Monitor
If you’d like to learn more about FLG and how it can help you call centre manage leads effectively, whilst integrating seamlessly into your business, have a look at our CRM Integrations page.