How to be Successful in Call Centre Management

By Jeremy Blake on February 3, 2016

Our top tips for successful call centre management are all about the future. The key to managing call centres effectively is to be planning ahead constantly so that service consistency matches the changing dynamic of your customers. The biggest threat to call centres is planning your strategy around how things were or are. The clever strategists anticipate the future, the trends that are coming, and they prepare their staff accordingly.

1. Omni-Channel Call Centre Behaviour – As a consumer you have the choice to interact with your chosen brands at the time that suits you, through the channel of your choice. You may begin on the internet, you may do some web-chat. Then you may opt to switch channel. You pick up the phone. You expect someone who is ’switched on enough’ to understand where you’ve got to, and to be able to pick this up and run with it. If the internal process of the brand, means you have to start all over again, then this call centre has not anticipated your requirement as a customer and the resulting, linear, system led behaviour (not the fault of the operator) will result in a negative experience. The solution is to recruit and train quality staff who have that innate communication skills ready to employ on your behalf.  

2. Management of the New Call Centre – The issue with omni-channel is that it makes much of what you’ve previously managed, redundant. Omni-channel takes no heed of handling times, order values, or the way you sell the product proposition. The point is that this interaction is customer led. So your management needs to manage that purpose and nothing else. So the real challenge will be finding the right people to have these conversations (who may well cost you more) and then training, coaching, and empowering them to serve and please your customers.        

3. Reporting and MI. Many Managers spend hours each day creating, compiling and delivering activity reports. From an omni-channel perspective this makes no sense because you can’t measure the interaction that easily because each one is customer-led. This will take some understanding and change management. After all, you want to measure something. That should be NPS, Customer satisfaction, (negative or positive outcome - has the conversation been a positive experience for the customer?), and additionally MI should be devolved to individual operators who take responsibility for the outcome of each call, and in time, can take charge of more than one type of interaction.

These three elements will create the best call centres into the future. Fewer operators, able to deliver service across product lines and channels, at the time that suits the customer, in a way that suits the customer, working directly with managers to improve the result for both sides.

Reality Training provide consultancy and training to major call centre brands. For more help with your change strategy contact ann@realitytraining.com.