Delivering exceptional customer experiences is a must if a company wants to keep clients coming back for more. Every interaction counts, whether it’s with a human or a piece of digital content.
When customers feel positive about those exchanges, it gives them an incentive to continue engaging with a business. And when clients’ experiences cross the threshold of excellence, they want others to know about it.
But before a company can start reaping the rewards of customer referrals, it has to lay a foundation of good customer service.
Cultural values, processes, training for reps, and leadership philosophies are certainly critical parts of that foundation.
How Call Center Can Increase Customer Satisfaction
However, so are technologies and tools that overcome the limitations of human-to-human contact. Call centers, in particular, can benefit from the built-in automation of artificial intelligence.
Whether it’s filtering calls or assisting live agents, AI’s capabilities are transforming contact centers’ operations. This article explores the ways tech can help call centers deliver more positive customer experiences through automation.
#1. Satisfy More Customers and Reduce Call Abandonment Rates
If people are contacting customer service, the last thing they want to do is wait on hold. It doesn’t matter whether someone’s request is urgent or routine. When a client constantly hears recordings about estimated wait times, it amplifies any frustration and impatience.
The experience is already a negative one by the time they speak to a live person. If an agent needs to transfer the customer or asks them to repeat information, the exchange can become tenser still.
Poor customer experiences, including long hold times and repetitive interactions, prompt people to seek out alternatives. After a negative experience, 72% of clients will be somewhat or very unlikely to continue doing business with a company.
Contact centers that use call center software can help prevent negative customer sentiments that come from not getting answers quickly enough.
Applications can automate client contact via chatbots, interactive voice response systems, and self-service portals. Customers won’t have to always wait in queues or abandon calls because of long hold times and frustration.
Since automated service options can handle routine questions, staff will deal with fewer repetitive calls. They’ll get to the more complicated requests faster, and calls won’t get as backed up. Chatbots and self-service portals also provide solutions when agents aren’t in the office.
#2. Manage Agent Scheduling With Advanced Precision
Mismatches between call volumes and the number of agents on the floor are bad for business. Having too many or too few employees can impact a company’s bottom line and lead to negative customer experiences.
When excessive downtime occurs in between calls, agents might become bored and mentally check out. Not having enough staff to take calls means clients are sitting on hold and taking out their frustrations on reps.
Those adverse sentiments can also cause employees to become disengaged and deliver less-than-ideal service.
Since there is a direct link between employee and customer experiences, it’s best to avoid processes that negatively impact call center staff. Poor scheduling can be one of those, especially as it may create a sense of helplessness among agents.
Whether they feel slammed or underutilized, they’re apt to conclude they don’t have the proper level of support to meet business demands.
That said, getting scheduling “right” in a call center can be challenging. There is a lot of data and fluctuating situations to analyze each day. Schedulers have to consider projected and historical call volumes, break periods, PTO requests, and operating hours.
Artificial intelligence and automated scheduling apps can analyze all of this within minutes. With the use of algorithms, these tools eliminate scheduling gaps and ensure the optimal number of agents are at work.
#3. Increase First Call Resolution Rates With Agent Guidance Tools
Without AI-driven tools, call center employees have to rely on knowledge bases, supervisors, and colleagues for answers. While agents normally go through weeks of training, it takes time and practice to handle calls with ease and confidence.
Static online resources help employees navigate customer requests, but they increase the number of screens agents have to toggle between.
This can lead to unsatisfactory experiences, as employees search for the correct course of action and clients wait for results. The more screens and information agents have to search through, the chances of their becoming distracted and confused increase.
They’re less likely to focus on listening to or conversing with the customer. Placing clients on hold to seek clarification from a co-worker or supervisor also degrades the quality of the customer’s interaction.
With automated agent guidance tools, employees can get real-time assistance and provide accurate customer solutions faster. Automated guidance software picks up on client sentiment and uses language cues to immediately direct employees to the correct procedures.
If a customer calls in to cancel their service, reps will know what they can offer to help retain them. Agents will also see scripts outlining questions they should ask and any disclaimers they need to share.
Call centers play a key role in customers’ experiences, considering they may be clients’ first and only point of contact with a company.
When those experiences don’t match expectations, businesses are more likely to lose money. In fact, poor customer service causes $1.6 trillion in losses each year.
Slow or no answers, disengaged agents, and incorrect responses contribute to negative perceptions. Automated tools that weed out the root causes of these deficiencies help prevent customer dissatisfaction.
By integrating improved client and employee resources, call centers will be better equipped to create superior consumer experiences.
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