Call Centre Technology 101
Call Centre Technology 101
It goes without saying, the ultimate goal of any call centre is to provide impeccable customer service. To the greatest number of customers in the least amount of time, with the lowest possible budget. In other words, it’s about making your customers happy while being as productive as possible.
Technology can be a little overwhelming and complicating, and call centre technology in particular can seem a little bit too complex to really get your head around, especially understanding what the important metrics are to track. Ultimately you just need your team working the phones, right? Making those calls, closing the sales and setting the appointments. As long as they’re doing that, that’s enough. Yes they need to work those phones, but the way in which they do it can be easy and highly efficient, or clunky with hours being wasted every week.
Call centre technology isn’t always about trying to manoeuvre a highly-complicated system, and all the training that that entails. It’s about little improvements here and tiny tweaks there. The little daily stressors you’ve been experiencing might go away, the conversations you’re having and the reports you’re providing can be of better quality, the few seconds of empty time between calls disappear. These little things add up to a more seamless and productive call centre. It’s just about knowing the technology that is out there.
If your company is big enough, you might do well to have dedicated inbound and outbound teams set up. But if you’re on the smaller side, this won’t necessarily be a great use of your resources. You want your team be able to fill every bit of time with calls- inbound or outbound, to make sure they’re as productive as possible. Seconds of down time here, minutes of listening to disconnected messages there, can add up to serious time wastage. Enter: blending. Your agents will be able to receive inbound calls and make outbound calls from the dialer without having to change queues. Who would have thunk it?
Automated dialers are pretty simple- they ramp up the number of calls made, and strip out all down time you haven’t planned for. There are 3 main types:
1. Preview Dialer: Your agents can see the customer’s history and details before making the call – perfect to enhance your customer experience.
2. Predictive Dialer: Calculates for you the optimum time to dial the next number in advance so the next call is connected as soon as your agent finishes their current call.
3. Power Dialer: If you’ve got lots of calls to be made, this is for you. This dialer calls multiple number all at once and connects the agents to the first lead that answers.
The right dialer for your team depends on your business. You can use all three features of these dialers with a multi-dialer.
Lead Cleanser Tool
Your list is your gold dust, and the quality of your list will largely determine the revenue your team brings in. A productive and efficient sales team thrives on momentum. One successful call brings positive energy and increases the chances of the next call having a solid outcome. You lose that momentum, not to mention efficiency, when your agents are listening to someone telling them the number is disconnected instead of having a conversation. A lead cleansing tool gets rid of the disconnected numbers so your agents are making more calls, more often, and capitalising on that momentum.
Hosted PBX (Private Branch Exchange)
This is basically a phone system that is run through the internet, and costs a fraction of the price of a traditional phone system. There are plenty of benefits of a Hosted PBX:
Connectivity: if your team can access the internet, they can access your phone system. This means you can offer them the flexibility to work from home, or anywhere- a great recruiting tool.
Saves your money: You have no hardware to buy and a low set up cost.
Scalability: The cloud-based PBX solution means you can quickly and easily respond to your businesses demands – scaling up or down within minutes.
Integrate: You can integrate outbound and inbound call centre functionality, and most other business systems to your hosted PBX, to make it seamless and easy. That’s the dream, right?
Real Time Reporting
Reporting is always crucial to understanding how you’re tracking against campaign objectives. The problem is, running a report at the end of the campaign, week, or even day gives you a good idea of what’s happened, but it’s a fait accompli at that stage. What you need is complete visibility in real time through a dashboard – to get a quick understanding of what’s happening in that moment so you can course correct. At the end of the campaign you should be looking at a report knowing you maximised your team’s time and skills.
If you run a call centre, there are so many little helpers available to you to increase your team’s productivity. They don’t have to break the bank and don’t have to involve getting a master’s degree in call centre technology. It’s just really about knowing what’s out there. Generally, what is available to you has been borne out of people’s frustrations- little solutions and improvements here and there than can add up to a big chunk of efficiency, with the added benefit of a little stress reduction for yourself along the way.