5 Ways to Make Outbound Calls That Count
5 Ways to Make Outbound Calls That Count
Everyone knows that the mantra for any manager these days is ‘do more with less’. More outbound calls with fewer staff. More sales with less training. More leads with less marketing budget. No point complaining about it, it’s the expectation of any manager in any business, so the answer is to work smarter. If you’re a call centre manager, you need to make every call your agents make count. That means having the right system, processes and staff in place to make sure you’re working those lists hard to squeeze out every sales opportunity from those outbound calls.
It’s not about a complete overhaul- it’s about making a few tweaks here and there. A little bit of change in a few places can come together nicely to boost your productivity and make those management meetings a bit less likely to have you in the foetal position under your desk.
Here are 5 ways to make those outbound calls count towards reaching these lofty goals.
Cleanse the Leads
Your leads are your gold dust. The names on that list can mean the difference between meeting your targets and falling completely, embarrassingly short. You need to make sure every name on that list comes with it a pretty good chance of a sale. You don’t want to waste time on leads that won’t answer, aren’t interested or worse are on the Do Not Call Register.
A good Lead Cleanser will remove disconnected numbers. No more listening to the rings, waiting for someone to pick up. Your leads should ‘lead’ to someone actually picking up the phone (see what I did there).
No one wants to be Big Brother, but you’ve got to keep an eye on your staff. Especially with such a high proportion of transient workers, you need to keep an eye on wait time, call numbers, positive call outcomes. There’s not much use in reviewing these key metrics after the fact, but in real time so you can course correct where needed and offer real time training while the agent is on the call.
Get yourself a system that allows you to see real time data so you can respond accordingly. Wait time increasing? Add more contacts in. When agents get to the bottom of their lists the wait time will increase, wasting your agents time, and ultimately grinding your productivity to a halt. The right system will allow you to correct this immediately so everyone stays on course.
Get in the cloud, it’s awesome up there. Seriously, think about it- no room you need to keep filled with servers, wires, filing cabinets. If the network goes down, you won’t need to wait for your poor IT person to figure it out, which can often be a lengthy exercise in troubleshooting. If your outbound calls aren’t made, you’re paying your staff to achieve nothing, and nobody wants that. If a cloud-based system goes down, it can be back up and running in 5 minutes, compared to 3-4 days for a traditional system.
The Right Dialler
The right dialler will save you time, and a power dialler is a like a dialler hyped up on caffeine, sugar and life. A power dialler will allow you to call multiple numbers at once and connect your agent to the first lead to answer, straight away. This means your outbound calls are maximised, and your outbound calling team spend more time talking to real people, and less time chilling out between calls. Think about it- if an agent takes even 30 seconds between calls, and they make an average of 20 calls in a shift, you’re looking at 9.5 minutes of time per agent, per shift (on top of regular breaks), that could be spent talking to customers. It adds up- look at that over a week and for a team of 5 you’re looking at nearly 4 hours of wasted time over a week. Eek.
A solid dialler also has an API that washes against the Do Not Call Register so you can save yourself the expensive mistake of non-compliance.
The dream for any call centre or sales team manager is to have a happy, motivated staff who don’t dread doing their jobs. What this elusive job satisfaction looks like is different for different people, but suffice to say offering flexibility is a pretty good way to achieve this.
Outbound Sales calls require a special kind of energy. Really effective sales calls require the agent to feel comfortable and at ease with the objective of the call, so the interaction can be more like a conversation and less like a script reading for an average community theatre production. Your salespeople might feel at ease in the comfort of their own homes, where they can relax and be themselves. This also allows them to work around their family commitments, which reduces stress on many fronts. This is all completely possible with the right cloud-based system- agents can make their calls from home and you can be comfortable as their manager that they are performing the way you need them to by monitoring them in real time.
Need to achieve more? It’s not so hard. You just need to look at the way you do things and make a couple of tweaks. Put the right system in place so your outbound calls are working as hard as possible for you, and ensure your agents are spending every minute speaking to actual humans, not waiting for someone to pick up and certainly not chilling out between calls. Increased productivity is possible- if you build it, it will come.
Picture Credit: Alexas_Fotos