Saving your business from “serial switchers” with call center automation
May 23, 2019, by Jessica Munday
Ever heard of the term “serial switchers?” If you’re a call center manager you may want to become familiar with it. It’s a new breed of customers who aren’t afraid to take their business elsewhere if a company gives them a bad customer experience and will switch multiple times until they find the right fit.
Seventy-six percent of customers say it’s easier than ever to switch service providers based on their experience. According to a NewVoice Media report, bad customer service costs U.S. businesses more than $75 billion a year — all from loss of customers.
Call centers are the primary way customers contact businesses – so it’s extremely critical that they provide a positive experience.
Most call centers see productivity problems resulting in long wait times, high call abandonment rates and poor average handle times. This has less to do with the productivity of the agents but more the inefficiency of their processes.
Here are three ways to apply call center automation:
1. Reduce application switching and clicks
Call center agents work with five or more tools depending on the industry the call center serves. Shifting between applications to copy and paste data requires several clicks and window switches, which lengthens the customer call.
Automation allows agents to easily transfer data between systems without having to perform these tasks manually.
For example, an incoming request for a lost credit card at a bank call center would require an agent to work with the banks online portal, a CRM system and a third-party application to order the new card. With call center automation integrations, the data needed (such as the reason for card replacement, card number, address) can easily be pulled and auto-populated into missing fields.
2. Repeat requests
Lots of call center agents are stuck in boring, repetitive processes due to repeat call requests that waste tons of time when automation could get them done much faster and more efficiently.
Call center automation tools can easily integrate with current systems and assist in completing repeat processes. For example, automation can pull data from one system to another with just the click of a button.
For example, service provider call center agents get calls about scheduling cable or internet repairs all the time, which requires manually scheduling the appointment and describing the technical issue for the repair person. Automation could create an appointment and transfer appointment details into a secondary system easily without making the agents do it manually.
3. Post-call work
After call work (ACW) lengthens wait times as it prevents newly available agents from picking up a new call right away. Some of these tasks include inputting customer interactions into a CRM system or finishing up the final details of a customer request. Many of these ACW tasks can be completed through automation.
One example is automating the generation of a confirmation letter. Often when someone renews or cancels their service, agents create a letter confirming the change manually. Automation can pull the information from the call centers CRM system and autofill it within a template.
These are some of the general tasks that automation can perform in call centers, more specific use cases depend on the industry served and types of requests received.