How to Shorten Every Customer Call By One Minute
What can you do in one minute?
Cook Minute Rice? Play Chopin’s “Minute Waltz” on the piano?
At the contact center very few calls will be completed in less than one minute. But add the number of the calls received during one shift, and consider how much time reducing the length of each call by a minute could save. What could be done with all that extra time?
It’s an achievable goal – here are some ideas on how to get there.
1. Shorten Your Greeting
Does your script ask agents to start with something like “Hello, this is Bobby from ABC Industries. It is my pleasure to assist you today. How can I be of service?” Why not cut that down to “This is Bobby from ABC, how may I help you?” It’s just as courteous, and you’ve already trimmed a few seconds from handle time before the customer says anything.
2. Agent Incentives
Offer a small reward to agents who improve their average call handle times. Just make certain that any increase in speed is not detrimental to customer service or bringing each call to a successful outcome.
3. Information Access
Keep customer profiles up to date, and make sure agents have immediate access to caller information (especially anything already verified through IVR) and answers to questions, on well-organized displays.
4. Call Recording
By recording and monitoring agent interactions with callers, it is much easier to identify areas where calls can be shortened.
5. No Cell Phones
If an agent has access to his cell phone or social media during a shift, he or she will inevitably be distracted, and it may result in customers having to repeat themselves, which is both frustrating and time wasting.
6. Skills-Based Call Routing
Use scheduling to create tiers of employees for specific types of calls based on skills. Try to make sure calls are routed by subject to agents with the skill set to handle them most efficiently. Leave the easier calls for new agents and those with less training on complex issues.
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