Executives increasingly value the contact center as a driver of profit, making it one of the most prominent parts of the company. As the roles and responsibilities of the contact center expand, maximizing its potential becomes all the more critical and complicated. For any contact center leader seeking to optimize performance, it could be worthwhile to consider the following creative best practices.
Contact centers focus significantly on harnessing the voice of the customer through data extraction. Innovative leaders put great value on the next step—sharing the voice with the entire company to guide future interactions with customers. It is important to stress the need to listen to and reflect on the customer’s voice, even if the message is not kind. Executives who do not listen to the voice of the customer to drive meaningful change will constrain the contact center. Leaders of the contact center should map out in detail the financial implications of not listening to the voice of the customer—from repeatedly dealing with the same issues to losing large numbers of customers. Aggregate the negative effects to show the impact on the bottom line in terms of the need for additional contact center staff, lower sales, refund costs, or otherwise. To make your case for more attention or resources to combat customer issues effectively, consider gaining the support of other departments that can help advocate for you while serving their own interests.
Leaders of the contact center should map out in detail the financial implications of not listening to the voice of the customer.
It may sound counterintuitive, but one goal of any contact center should be to make itself obsolete. In other words, effective contact centers should strive for a seamless customer experience without excessive touch points and potential areas of friction. Contact center executives should work to streamline the path for customer complaints, directing feedback to the appropriate departments in as automated and timely a way as possible. If a customer complaint lands in the right department from the start, your work to satisfy that customer is nearly complete. If you continue to learn from customer feedback and fine-tune your efforts to build clean customer paths, you will be on the fast track to hero status.
Contact center executives should work to streamline the path for customer complaints, directing feedback to the appropriate departments in as automated and timely a way as possible.
Fundamental to any effective contact center is a combination of retained talent, collaborative teams, and ambitious leadership. In laying the groundwork for long-term success, contact center executives should focus on all three of these categories. First, with respect to retaining the most qualified employees, contact center leaders should act as talent coaches, taking the time to understand professional and personal goals of their staff. Doing so may stem turnover and increase productivity. Second, contact center directors need to establish a team environment to build morale and leverage friendly competition to boost performance. Finally, by setting the bar high for the team and painting a vision of success, a contact center director can not only get the most out of the team but also improves the department’s stature at the company, making everyone proud to be part of it.
Contact center directors need to establish a team environment to build morale and leverage friendly competition to boost performance.
Innovation is crucial to contact center advancement. Fortunately, there are more resources and technologies available than ever before to help contact center leaders improve their operations. Among the most potent is social media. Social media offers a variety of platforms that both enable customers to vent about issues and let you promote changes based on the feedback. Moreover, it may offer the most efficient means to leverage customer feedback to get the company’s executives to incorporate your operation into their decision-making about vision, products and services.
The responsibilities of contact centers continue to evolve, requiring continued innovation to stay ahead. Leaders in the industry who make the effort to improve their operations continuously will realize a variety of benefits that improve the customer experience and boost the bottom line.