For businesses all around the world, providing customer service through a call center or contact center is an essential requirement to succeed in highly competitive industries. However, the cost of providing customer service that does not compromise on the quality of customer care and efficiency, often dissuades enterprises from setting up such a division internally.
Listed below are a few ways to achieve the goals of customer service on a low budget.
Six Ways to Reduce Costs in a Call Center
Table of Contents
Analysis of Expenses:
One of the ways to control costs is to analyze which expenses are essential and which ones are not and build a roadmap around it. Training and employee satisfaction are expenses that require investment. Agents need to be well trained and motivated to improve their productivity, due attention must be given to their career aspirations, and they need to be paid competitive salaries and ensured a happy working environment. However, instead of having a full-time, year-round staff, the expense can be spread out as per the requirements of the business – for instance, hiring additional customer service representatives only during the holiday season. As per Gartner baseline efficiencies will help in creating sustainable cost optimization roadmap.
Monitor Customer Service Activities:
Analyze how the agents are taking calls and sending emails and how the customers are responding. Inefficiency in these tasks could lead to unhappy clients, and that could be a deterrent for customer loyalty. Also, acquiring new clients is an expensive proposition and thus, it is better and cheaper to keep existing clients happy.
Pay Attention to First Call Resolution:
The agents need to be trained well and should possess enough skill and knowledge to solve a variety of problems which will not force them to transfer the call to another associate. Skill-based routing can be used to direct customers to certain agents based on their skill sets and their problems. Queued callbacks and predictive dealers can be used to initiate conversations when both the customers and the agents are available, thereby not wasting the time or money of either party.
Investment in Self-Service Technology:
Businesses can invest in technology which will not only reduce operational expenses, but also the need for human intervention. Customers can make basic reservations and pay regular bills through a self-service interactive system that functions around the clock and frees the associates to work on more complex services.
Leverage Digital Communication:
There are already many alternatives to placing a call such as writing e-mails and texting short messages. Digital channels of communication, such as emails, are more cost-effective than voice processes and can support the phone service. With the rise of social media and the use of websites, there are many more alternatives available for customer care. Surveys can be taken through social media. Analyzing traffic on Twitter and asking customers to click likes on a Facebook page are far better ways to analyze customer behavior as compared to calling them up and asking them. Crowd sourcing, forums, blogs and social networks are all customer friendly ways of interacting with the target audience.
Introduce Live Chat:
Text messages and live chat also reduce the cost and time of placing a call. Giving agents an informative database on customer information allows them to understand who they are talking to, their past history, and a log of their previous problems
The traditional models of handling calls are not on their way out, but they are no longer the only way. Using customer data smartly, taking the help of emails and live chat, making use of social media and interactive websites, imparting knowledge to associates, and automating basic functions enable contact centers to be cost-effective, while also providing customers the assistance that they need. Outsourcing customer service to a leading call center support services company will be more cost-effective for businesses globally.