By Shannelle Krebbs, Operations Manager
Determining inbound service level goals is one of the most important factors for anyone responsible for the inbound call center function. Determining the right inbound service level goal is not straight forward. A study conducted by AT&T 30 years ago determined that 80% of calls should be answered in 20 seconds or less. This was based off research that indicated that many callers would hang up the call after waiting for 20 seconds. Referred to as the 80/20 rule, this began the foundation for determining benchmarks for inbound service level standards. This study was conducted before the majority of inbound call centers implemented technology that is considered standard today, including Integrated Voice Response (IVR), Priority Queueing for high value customers based on the phone number they are calling from, In-Queue expected wait time announcements and In-Queue self-service options. Continue reading
By Rich Hamilton, Director of Marketing & Product Development
It’s said that the heart and soul of most companies is their Inbound Contact Solutions operation (also known as an inbound call center). This vital department with an organization has an opportunity to get key customer insights and the call center interactions often make or break the customer relationship.
Author note: When I refer to inbound contacts, I’m talking about inbound voice contacts plus the other non-voice contacts that contact centers are responsible for handling, including email, text and chat.
Have you ever sat on hold, trying to call a company and finally gave up, never to interact with that company again? Making sure that your Inbound Contact Solutions operation is properly staffed is super important. Whether this is a first impression or an angry customer that is giving the company one last chance, each inbound contact can be vital. Continue reading
By Ryan Apodac, Operations Manager/Trainer
Busy season can be vastly different from one business to the next. Many people think of the holiday busy season as Black Friday through Dec 31st. For one of our clients in the party supplies business, they do 80% of their business in the six weeks prior to Halloween. For another client in the energy business, their busy season is defined by the state’s public service commission’s rules surrounding when they can market to new customers and sign them up for an agreement (typically in March and April of each year). Continue reading
By Melissa Werth, Customer Service Supervisor
Author note: When I use the term inbound calls, I am also referring to other customer contacts like text, chat, and email. In today’s inbound customer service model, all of these customer contact types are viewed interchangeably.
You’ve made the decision to employ inbound call center outsourcing to save money, improve service or both. Inbound call center selection is not easy. There are lots of call center options. And after you’ve made the decision, you need to be prepared to make a heavy investment of time with the new team to ensure they are successful. Many executives and managers overlook the importance of the time investment when they are developing the plan.
To ensure your outsource initiative is successful, here are some keys to ensure success. Continue reading
By Marcia Jenkins, Senior Operations Manager
One of the best tools an outsource telemarketing or contact center manager has is the blended seat. A blended seat is a call center workstation that allows the call center agent to handle inbound calls, outbound calls, email, chats and text messages. Most call center management pros are adept at carefully constructing a plan where different call center agents are “skilled” for different types of contacts and by using skills and skills-based routing, the call center agents are kept busy with the contact types that they are most skilled at; however they are also available to handle non-primary contact types as needed to achieve the service level and customer satisfaction goals within the call center. Continue reading