In part one of this series, we covered seven simple ways you can reduce the average handle time in a call center. The fun part is, none of them take weeks to introduce. You can work on improving the average time right away. With that said, here’s a few more to take action on.
1.Using The “Acknowledge, Answer, Ask” Method
Keeping up momentum in a phone call helps the phone call keep moving forward. By acknowledging the customer, you’re letting them know you understand what they need in which case you can now provide the answer. Asking a specific question to finish helps the call get to the next step.
2. Have Sufficient Supervisors On Hand
When an agent has a quick question they aren’t sure on, it can be faster to ask a supervisor than searching online. This goes for escalating questions too, you don’t want an irritated customer waiting for an age just to speak to another person.
3. Get The Basics Right On The Call
Simple in theory right? This starts from the first conversation which needs to follow a predefined structure of diagnosing what the call is about. When this is established the rest of the call can go in whatever direction required.
4. Simplified Marketing Materials
If you get a constant stream of calls coming through with the same question about the marketing campaign talk to the marketing team. They’ll appreciate the feedback but can also make immediate changes to help lower call volumes.
5. Share Info On Repeated Questions
Companies are dynamic and there will be times when certain issues arise leading to a flood of incoming phone calls. When this happens, it’s important to share this information with the rest of the team about what solution to take when the first couple of calls have come through. This will ensure there’s no repeated research looking for the answer.
6. Keep The Customer In The Loop
Sometimes you may need to be silent while processing information. This isn’t ideal, but when it is, let the customer know what you’re doing to avoid them bringing up extra unnecessary conversation adding to the call time.
7. Implement Web Chat To Handle Multiple Customers
Web chat is a way for some businesses to handle customers who have plenty of back and forth required, including details from the customer. When the customer needs to figure things out on a call, this creates dead time which on a phone call is inefficient. On web chat, agents can chat with multiple customers at once.
8. Create A Good Opening Questions
“Hello, How Are You?”
This is a nice question, but it’s not a great question. It’s inviting the customer to answer for possibly minutes, you never know. A question that gives the agent the lead right away is better to steer the call towards a solution. A good question could be “Good day, my name is X…did you call us before?”
There we go. That’s plenty of tips you can implement in your call center procedures to reduce the average handle time. Never stop looking to improve your results!