When people create a business it is vital that they put the customers first. They will be the ones paying the company bills, after all! Any marketing expert will tell you that your products or services must be tailored to your customers’ requirements and not yours. If this doesn’t happen they will take their money elsewhere.
It may be that your business has grown from being a small office with a couple of phones to larger premises with several different teams. When companies consider establishing call centers it can be a real headache. There are lots of questions to be answered, and everything needs to be within budget. Perhaps you are in this place right now and need some extra support and guidance. If this is the case you should read this article right now.
Cloud Contact Centres
In the early days company data began to be uploaded online, thanks to cloud technology. Different staff were granted varying levels of access, and the information could be read or edited from anywhere. This has now been taken up a level by IT companies that can connect all inbound and outbound customer communication on one internet server. Customer interactions can then be made using a variety of different means, and the staff can work from virtually anywhere.
If you need more information there are plenty of specialist websites you can access. Businesses that use a cloud contact centre can harness the power of the phone, email, live chat, SMS, or social media communication. The call staff are able to access a bespoke desktop that is integrated with a CRM system. They can use the equipment 24/7, whilst their managers review the staff resources and access forecasting data.
Customer Relationship Management (CRM) Systems
They are crucial because they bring everything together into one place. The managers would be able to request specific reports and view the data in real-time.
Software such as Salesforce can display a customer’s interaction with the company from ‘cradle to grave’ – whether it was by email, phone, or more. It can also help ensure peoples’ queries are always responded to.
Virtual Call Centres
They can be set up surprisingly quickly because the company you use will provide the hardware and IT infrastructure.
All you would need to concern yourself with would be getting the software installed onto your computers, and ensuring you will have an adequate internet connection.
In the past, many companies were nervous about letting their staff work from home. During the pandemic, however, many businesses had no choice. Rather than seeing a reduction in productivity, they saw an increase. The reality is that staff are less disciplined about taking breaks at home than they are at the office.
When your call staff can work from anywhere you don’t need to employ people from the highest-paid areas or countries. You can also use the different time zones to your advantage. Instead of only using local staff from 08:00 to 17:30 your company can be available to help customers 24/7. All your employees would need is a decent computer, a set of headphones and a good internet connection.
Factors To Consider With Remote Working
If someone works in your office it is easy to do a workstation assessment to ensure their desk and chair are ok. You can check their pc, mouse, and keyboard are in the right place and help prevent neck, back, and wrist issues from developing. This is not something you can do for an employee who lives on the other side of the world.
Whilst remote working can save on-premises costs and more, there are other things worth considering: There could be potential security risks and your company would be dependent on your third-party cloud supplier. At the end of the day, many businesses weigh these things up and continue with the remote option.
Onsite Call Centres
We will now discuss these so you can view all the options you have available. If you keep everything onsite you will have a greater measure of control. Having said that, many companies end up using multiple locations, in which case this gets them almost back to square one.
If you decide to keep everything onsite you will need to oversee the choice of hardware and software. This can be a daunting decision if you don’t use the knowledge of an IT consultant or third-party company. You would also need to employ specialized staff who could set up and configure everything and maintain it on an ongoing basis.
A Quality Means Of Internal Communication
There will be times when a member of the call staff will need to discuss a previous customer conversation with a colleague. Added to that, it’s essential that the managers can talk to their staff and vice versa. Such software as Slack can prove invaluable here. Just as you can set up address lists in email, individual people can be added to different groups. This could apply to the IT staff, call staff, or members of specific projects.
Whilst many companies use Slack for written communication there are also video conferencing options that can be used. By harnessing the power of software such as Skype or Microsoft Teams, colleagues are enabled to have virtual face-to-face conversations no matter where they are. They can be both one-to-one and for team meetings. Additional staff could be invited to join at any moment should this be required.
As we can see, technology has provided a number of exciting options for companies that use call centers. In addition, you will have the usual other things to think about. They include budgeting, hiring staff, and providing ongoing training. Disaster recovery plans should also be implemented in case there are unexpected issues with the computers or internet connections.
Once everything is in place, the technology can serve the purposes of the company. It is often easy to customize and can be quickly upgraded when required. In turn, it can help your new and existing customers receive quality service, and provide vital tools for your ongoing success.