4 Steps to Building Contact Center Loyalty
It’s a truism in business whether you work at a contact center or an auto repair shop: keeping the customers you already have is a high priority, because it costs less money than attracting new customers.
How do you do it? Simple – don’t give these customers a reason to leave.
Here are four steps that will help build customer loyalty.
1. Quality Assurance
Building a culture of dedicated customer service begins with an effective quality management and quality assurance program.
Quality assurance introduces a grading component into the call monitoring process. Recorded calls are randomly selected and measured against the guidelines and procedures at the contact center.
Many of these are defined as Key Performance Indicators (KPIs), such as how quickly the caller can reach a call center, how quickly they can reach an agent, how quickly their issue can be resolved and the call closed, and how long they wait on hold during a call.
Additional quality issues include agent courtesy, empathy with a dissatisfied customer, and the ability to follow procedures. While these will be more subjective than numbers-based KPIs, they are just as important to a successful operation.
You don’t hear the word “etiquette” very often these days, and that may be why so many customers express frustration with some companies that treat them more like numbers than people. Your agent training should involve adherence to company procedures and working with the technology in place at the contact center, but it should also include a refresher course in courtesy and manners. That means speaking to customers with a calm and courteous tone, and thanking them for their business.
The job of an agent is not to listen to a customer until he or she hears a key word (order, return, complaint) that triggers a pre-scripted response. It is to actively listen to what is being said, and respond within the framework of call center policy, but in a way that acknowledges each customer individually by giving them the respect of the agent’s full attention.
4. Ditch the Script
This can’t be standard operating procedure, but once an agent has proven his or her ability to positively engage with customers, that agent should be trusted with the option of going off-script and handling the situation the best way he or she sees fit. These agents should then document their actions and the results – it might just uncover a new way to solve an issue that can be adopted throughout the contact center.
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