From mid-March to end of April, many call centers can use VOIP calling to facilitate safer working conditions for their call center agents. The coronavirus outbreak has created an urgent need for work-from-home (WFH) options. In India, due to legal hurdles around VOIP calling, it might have been difficult to move your call center or customer communications to WFH. However, the Department of Telecom’s (DoT’s) has taken some swift decisions that have made it much easier for businesses: For the next two months, until 30th April, DoT has decided to grant certain relaxations for a period of up to April 30, 2020 for OSPs in respect of WFH.1 One of the exemptions includes the requirement of authorized Service Providers Provisioned secured VPN (PPVPN). VPN refers to a virtual private network. This is critical for call centers. How will this help Call Center operations? There are four ways in which these exemptions will help call centers move their operations to work-from-home. 1. Calls can be diverted to WFH agents via VOIP. With these new regulations in place, you can convert your calls to VOIP and connect to agents’ phones within your local network. Any organization with an OSP license may extend the call from OSP site their agents’ phones at home via VPN. 2. Agents can seamlessly make & receive calls from their browser. Using Cloud telephony tools such as Ozonetel’s CloudAgent, agents can receive and make calls from their browser window. Mangers have access to live monitoring, call recording and reports. And IVR, call routing and automatic call distribution tools ensure a flawless customer experience. 3. They can access CRM or other data needed for a seamless CX. Agents will have secure access to all the applications that are accessible to an agent at the OSP site. This includes any integrations with CRM, ticketing or other business tools. This means that call will continue to auto log into the CRM and agents can view customer data while speaking to them, ensuring better customer experience. (Read more about CRM integrations here) 4. One system, multiple seats These new regulations also mean that businesses can run a single OSP site and extend all calls to an agent at home, where multiple sites are needed due to limitation of seating space. For businesses facing increased call volumes, they can use this to scale up their call center operations. Can any business use VOIP Calling? There are certain restrictions on these new regulations. First and foremost, only businesses who have been granted an OSP license by DoT can implement this. Other restrictions are outlined in the below document: The New Regulations as shared by DoT on their Twitter Handle If you have an OSP license from DoT, contact us for any support in incorporating changes as per new network setup. For other businesses, the following resources may be helpful if they need to move their operations to WFH: Quickly switch your call center to WFH model Route calls to offline WFH agents Switch [...]
Holidays are all about putting up your feet and relaxing, right? Not if you work in a call center! Businesses work hard to capitalize on the holiday sales peak. That means sales calls, customer care, and food delivery call centers need to go into overdrive. Take, for instance, Valentine’s Day. Love is blooming. And so are food delivery orders. Our call center statistics for a single food & delivery call center reveal a 5X spike in call orders on this day. This meant 25,000+ calls on a single day. Handling the Call Spike: Efficiency is key But there is more to the story. These 25000+ calls were handled by just 80 agents. That means 220 calls per agent. In other words, a remarkable 98% agent utilization. (1) We asked the call center managers how they managed? Here are some tips they shared: Punctual logins. Absenteeism or late arrivals are difficult to manage on most days. (Also read: Call Center Workforce Management) But on festivals like Valentine’s Day, Diwali, Christmas, Black Friday or Cyber Monday, it’s unacceptable. The key is to prep your crew into battle mode and to make certain that absolutely nobody logs in late that day. Scattered Break Times. Your agents will need sufficient breaks to ensure peak performance. But our managers suggest shuffling things a bit. Instead of fixed break times, juggle them through the day. As a result, you should not have more than three agents on break at any given time. A Robust Call Center Solution. Nobody likes a show-off, but I’m going to go ahead and say it anyway: having a robust call center solution is critical for handling all the spikes. (Also read: How to select a Call Center) Ultimately it boils down to hard work Eventually, it was impossible for managers to pull off the v-day rush without a driven, hardworking team. With an average handle time (1) of about 3 minutes, 220 calls per agent meant that most agents put in an eleven-hour workday in order to answer all the incoming requests. Now, that’s some grit! So how do you create a team this motivated? In work (as in personal life) it’s not about the one day you celebrate (or push your staff to work), it about the 364 days you work on building the relationship. Happy Holidays!