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Useful techniques for call centers

Posted on 2011-02-22
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Hello,

I'm doing some research about useful techniques for call centers. For techniques I mean two basic things:
-  how to organize or manage and monitoring a call center
-  technics or tips for operators about how to talk or be prepared to deal with customers

It would very helpful if you could provide some links.

Thanks!
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Question by:miyahira
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by:Rob Hutchinson
ID: 34957212
There's a good movie on this:
http://www.outsourcedthemovie.com/

Seriously though, I do not have much experience setting up a call center, but working with our current call center; I'd suggest that you immediately get some type of call tracking software. Having a database of common solutions is what you will want to use so that a previously found solution can be easily referred to by more than one helpdesk person.

To be successful will require that your helpdesk find the solution as quickly as possible, or that you know where to find the answer--meaning you know who to refer the user to if you cannot resolve the issue.
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David Brugge earned 500 total points
ID: 35004201
I managed a call center many, many years ago, so here are some things off the top of my head.

Several things are very important.

 As WiRed says, get some type of call tracking software, or at the very least, start making written records. Records should be kept of wait times and how long it takes to find a successful conclusion.

Every operator should have a script, or at least a flow chart for the common problems that they are likely to encounter.

It is important that every operator keep to the script--not necessarily reading verbatim, but all asking the same questions and offering the same solutions.

Operators should alert you of any problems that arise with the script so that it can be modified and distributed.

Operators should always acknowledge any frustration expressed by the caller and (instead of agreeing with them) offer to work with them to find a solution. Operators should be given authority to take ownership of the problem. This means keeping with a problem until a solution is found. If no solution is forthcoming, make it that operator's responsibility to find someone that can find a solution, and also their responsibility to see that anyone that the call is handed off to, finds a solution.  This is accomplished with open tickets.

When an operator takes a call, a ticket is opened. when a solution if found, the ticket is closed. The ticket should state the problem and solution.

If no solution is found, the ticket should state a more detailed account of the problem, what steps were tried, and what the results were. If the problem is escalated to another person, the person to whom it is directed is noted on the ticket along with the time and date. That operator now has an open ticket until he or she receives verification that the ticket was successfully closed.

It should be the responsibility of management to keep track of all open tickets and see to it that they are being responded to in a timely manner, or if a solution is still not available, that the caller is kept updated as to the efforts that are being made.

A means of monitoring the calls is very important so that you can measure the effectiveness of the call taker and confirm that he or she is keeping to the script.

Also important is a systemic method of surveying those that have called in to ascertain the level of satisfaction with their call.

Anyway, that's what I suggest.
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