We live in a customer-obsessed culture, and consumers have come to expect excellence in all areas of service. This has been the driving force behind things such as 24-hour access to customer support and, more recently, the media attention around flying drones designed to get things to our doorstep even faster. This has also created extremely high customer service standards for businesses that want to stay ahead of competitors. In this Age of the Customer, businesses suffer tremendously when they are not able to deliver rapid, quality customer support to consumers.
GM’s recent recall of over 1 million cars due to a faulty ignition switch created a customer service nightmare for the company as its call centers suddenly became overloaded with unhappy customers.
So what’s a company to do when faced with unexpected call overload?
Here are five tips on how to handle heightened customer engagement volumes due to crises, promotions, holidays or other unforeseen events affecting your organization’s contact centers.
Tip 1: Use scripting for consistent messaging
The use of an automated scripting system will centralize messaging for all of your agents as they answer incoming calls. During a crisis, scripting is a key part of creating consistent messaging while satisfying heightened demand.
Tip 2: Put data to good use
Many contact centers face the hurdle of gathering data but not knowing how to utilize it properly. Access to appropriate data enables call center agents to assist customers with the best solutions possible. When you organize your historical interaction data from each of your customers, agents can more efficiently identify how to handle any new customer issues.
Tip 3: Know your agents and apply their strengths
Before a crisis strikes, it is valuable to identify the key strengths of your agents, so that you can immediately assign the most skilled crisis agents when disaster strikes. Create a system that identifies agents’ main customer response skills at each of your contact center locations. This way, agents not focused on crisis calls can conduct everyday customer support in a timely manner.
Tip 4: Take advantage of the cloud
When contact centers are overloaded from a crisis, cloud contact center solutions are highly effective in recruiting support from global agents outside of the geographic region affected by the crisis. Additionally, cloud technologies enable big savings in resources for call center equipment.
Tip 5: Unleash your resources around the globe
During times of unexpected call overloads, reaching out to your resources from around the globe can help to answer higher call volumes. Utilize your global network and deploy supplementary agents that will be able to extend the hours of operation when a crisis is at hand. Check out global call routing solutions from CC-One.