Can Contact Center Agents Replace In-Store Employees?
One of the unfortunate realities resulting from America’s increased preference to shop online has been a decline in the quality of customer service at many retail chains and stores. With more resources now devoted to ecommerce sites, businesses are often relying on fewer in-store salespeople.
Over time, that will just motivate more people to stay home and shop. And that may require contact center agents to do much more than take orders and payment information, especially in situations where the easy inquiries and basic functions are turned over to chatbots.
Tomorrow’s contact center agents may need to fulfill more of a sales role. They won’t be just asking customers for the size and color of a garment they wish to purchase – they will recommend clothes that would be flattering based on each customer’s age, complexion and personal style. For someone starting a do-it-yourself home improvement project, the agent might work with the homeowner on the list of items needed.
This takes us far beyond the standard contact center scripts. And it will require agents who are trained to take on these responsibilities. Such agents will expect to be paid more for their expertise, or receive a commission on the sales they make.
It doesn’t mean that every agent must be trained in marketing, but they should be made aware of the marketing tenets that customers associate with good service.
With a workforce management solution, agents can pull up past purchases, the caller’s location and previous contacts. With speech analytics, agents will be in a better position to tailor each call to a customer’s preferences. And by using analytics, raw call data such as recordings can be fashioned into actionable insight.
By providing experienced agents with the right technology solutions, your call center can serve as one of your most effective marketing and sales outreach efforts.
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