Contact centers provide a variety of important services, such as fielding inbound customer service requests, outbound calls for loyalty programs, and everything in between. Call center management is an increasingly important job that balances agent productivity and operations to deliver positive customer experiences. To provide a great customer experience, you must cultivate a positive workplace environment. Work to ensure optimal employee staffing, training, strategic vision, and much more. Managing these tasks can be overwhelming for many call center managers, but their responsibilities are critical for the company’s revenue and brand presence.
Call centers that have great systems with technology that empowers agents will have the most success. Below we’ll delve into some best practices for call center management and how to implement them in your organization.
What Is Call Center Management?
Call Center Management refers to any of the operations that help your contact center be successful, particularly on a daily basis. Typically, anything that needs to be completed on the day-to-day falls under the direction of the call center manager. Core responsibilities of a call center manager include coordinating and producing all hiring, training, and scheduling of agents. Effective call center managers put in place systems to ensure sales targets are met and customers are having positive experiences with the company. They do this by keeping tabs across multiple communication channels and optimizing operations based on the insights they glean from those communications. They also build the workplace environment and motivate employees through reasonable call center scheduling — all while keeping everything running within the company budget. Because they do so much, their impact can make or break your call center.
As a result, call centers are often fast-paced and stressful environments, so managers must employ systems to keep the workplace operating as efficiently as possible.
Call Center Management Best Practices
Advances in call management software opens up the possibilities for call center management today. Contact centers can expand their capabilities to emails, phone calls, social media, online chat, and more to achieve the 360 brand experience consumers are accustomed to.
Implementing the right tools and best practices often leads to higher cost savings, enhanced productivity, an increase in sales, and even a boost in security. Managers will find these best practices ease some burdens from their stressful jobs and can lead to call center success.
Hiring the right people is important for five essential reasons: time, customer service, business growth, lower turnover rates, and stronger teamwork.
Every manager can agree that hiring takes time, regardless if the individual is fit for the team. But hiring the right person can reduce the amount of time lost hiring someone else and time spent training. Managers can rest assured that the right employee is getting the job done correctly.
It is tricky finding the necessary traits an individual should possess. When hiring, look for people who have good listening, communication, memory, and attitude skills. Candidates who have these skills are essential for cultivating positive customer relationships. The ideal manager also has knowledge of common call center solutions and how software can be best implemented to serve customers.
Business Development & Growth
As the call center continues to grow, so will the need for employees. Hiring individuals who are eager to grow with the company will reduce the number of people you need to hire later. Loyal employees will improve growth and stability as the company matures.
Every time businesses return to the hiring pool, they lose money. Employees start at a loss to the company until they are properly trained for their role. Hiring the right candidate can save time, money, and effort. Hire individuals that can hit the ground running and bring value to the company.
Teams that continually work together to accomplish the same goal or task, build stronger bonds. They understand each other and provide more efficient results. Bringing in someone who can contribute to team efforts will only accelerate and improve results.
Put Resources Towards Training and Onboarding
Onboarding is when businesses provide training and information to new hires. The process helps employees adjust to their new position on the team while quickly understanding their employer's expectations and company standards. Individuals who have the knowledge, training, and support they need from the company, are more productive and loyal.
Training and onboarding are important because they engage employees in their roles taken in the call center. These processes create workers who are committed to company success and make them feel like a member of the team. Managers must play a role in this process as it will influence the overall experience and future loyalty of the candidate.
Implement Strong Managerial Skills
Call center management requires a balance between the company, customers, and employees. When faced with contradictory circumstances, managers must have the proper skills to handle the situation. Although some skills come with time and experience, others come naturally or can be taught. Top managerial skills include
Technical skills are the capabilities managers possess to use a variety of techniques to achieve their goals. Not only must they be able to work with technology like call center automation or call tracking software but managers must also have skills to market, design, and boost sales.
The ability to think abstractly and generate ideas. The manager must analyze problems and create solutions. Predicting business hurdles is a critical skill that prevents issues down the road.
The manager's ability to interact, work and relate to people. Not only must they motivate employees, but also understand customer needs. Some examples of interpersonal skills include planning, communication, decision making, delegation, problem-solving, and motivation.
Different roles and companies are going to require a variety of these skills. Managers who have or obtain these skills are essential to running organizations and meeting business objectives. In addition to the skills above, managers need to have an understanding of contact center compliance regulations to keep their organization on the right side of the law. Managers also need to be keeping up with the latest trends and outbound call tips to stay above the competition.
Focus on Employee Engagement
Employee engagement should be a priority for call centers. If employees do not want to stay with your organization, you will lose money and have a higher turnover rate.
Effective employee engagement comforts new hires and makes them feel like part of the team. It can be as simple as interacting with employees every day or as complex as a team vacation. Implement employee engagement programs to ensure your call center builds a loyal employee base.
Engage with Customers
Voice has remained the preferred channel for business because it is the most direct and personal form of communication. This includes internal communications as well as connections with customers. Similar to how employees feel the need for engagement, so do your customers.
Effective call center management ensures customers are met at every touchpoint of their buying experience. This will build customer loyalty and aid in gathering important customer insights. Customers who can look back on their experience as positive will have a huge impact on your call center’s reputation.
Report on Metrics That Matter
Call center management includes establishing the correct metrics. Reporting the right metrics helps call centers deliver better service, improve customer experience, identify room for improvement, evaluate engagement and productivity, and assess company reputation. Your call center can even help your organization measure the success of advertising efforts. When a campaign requires a caller to call in, call tracking can help you report on the performance of the campaign.
The Hiya Connect analytics dashboard helps track and report the metrics that are most important for your call center. Metrics like answer rate, KPI, call attempts, and call durations are all included on the dashboard. If you want to learn more about metrics for your call center download the call center metrics eBook.
Deliver Trusted Calls With Hiya
Good call center management is a great step towards reaching the goals you’ve set. However, no matter how effective your script is or how well-trained your agents are, you’ll fall short every time if customers aren’t picking up the phone. Customers who can quickly identify your company when the phone rings are more likely to answer. With Hiya Connect, your organization can display a Branded Call that allows customers to see your company name, logo, location, and informative reason for calling.
Looking to take your call center to the next level? Download the Answer Rates Guide.