Telephony For Support

Call monitoring & call listening for better conversations

Call listening not only helps train agents but also translates into customer satisfaction. How should you keep track of your customer support quality? Or the quality of your sales calls? The answer is simple: you listen. Sure, there are a lot of metrics that can help you figure out customer satisfaction and agent performance. But once you have the metrics, listening is how you begin improving those conversations. So what are the telephony tools that can help you? Your cloud contact center offers a lot of call monitoring and call listening tools and features. This article uncovers a few. What is call monitoring? Call monitoring involves listening in on a call between your contact center agents and customers/prospects to check the quality of the conversation. What’s the need for call monitoring? Call monitoring is one of the most potent quality assurance tools. It is almost like conducting a survey about how satisfied your customer is but doing it real-time instead of in retrospect. When you listen to an agent talking to your customer as it happens, you understand the customer’s experience and your agents convincing skills. Call monitoring serves several purposes: Analyze the real reason behind your metrics Your metrics such as AHT, FCR and CSAT can give you a good measure of call center performance. But to investigate what's behind the metrics, you need to use call monitoring and call listening tools. For example, If an agent’s AHT(Average Handle Time) is higher, you can investigate why the agent took longer to close a call. Figure when your metrics don't give you an accurate picture. Call monitoring can also tell when you need to be less rigid with your metrics. For example, a call that lasted longer than your AHT does not necessarily mean it wasn’t effective. It could mean the agent went the extra mile to resolve a customer’s query. Similarly, you may find an agent has deviated from the script only to ensure a customer is satisfied with the response or a solution. This way, call monitoring can also tell you when it is time for introspection. Better customer service: Whenever customer satisfaction scores are dropping, call monitoring lets you take instant steps to arrest the fall. Agent training: You can use recordings of well-handled and poorly-tackled calls as case studies when training contact center agents. You can also intervene during a call if you think it is not going in a positive direction and offer the agent constructive solutions. First call resolution: When an agent is aware that the call is being listened to, he or she will do their best to ensure the caller’s issue is resolved in the first call itself. This instills the kind of confidence in a customer that no paper warranty can. Timely intervention: When a manager is listening in on a call and notices that the agent is unable to solve a problem, he or she can intervene right then and advise the agent on what to do next. This saves [...]

Call monitoring & call listening for better conversations 2018-11-10T15:42:49+00:00

3 key concerns while developing your call center’s voice bot

What is a voice bot? I would define a voice bot as an interactive voice user interface powered by NLP. It can help your inbound or outbound call center in several ways. In terms of customer support, a voice bot can be used to help provide self-service. In outbound call centers, voice bots can give dynamic, personalized reminders for payments, past dues, renewals or more. Possible uses of voice bots for support calls: Provide self-help for calls waiting in the queue at your customer support center. Answer Frequently Asked Questions for users calling into your support center. Act as an auto-receptionist, guiding the caller to the right agent. Help cancel or reschedule bookings for customers calling into your center. Possible uses of voice bots for sales calls: Schedule appointments with prospects or leads. Qualify leads after your dialer connects and before the agent goes live during sales calls. Confirm a prospect's readiness/interest to talk during cold calling. (Also Read: 4 ways voice bots can help your sales teams) What should you be clear on before implementing your bot? Here’s my advice: Define the problem. The most difficult, important and critical task in designing your voice bot is to define the problem. What problem do you want your voice bot to solve? Don’t just try to fit a solution into your setup for the sake of being tech-savvy. Instead, think of what problems you have, and use the technology to solve the problem. For example, you could think of: - What questions/queries can your voice bot take care of? - What kind of information can it glean from the customer/prospect? - What part of the agent’s conversation is repetitive? - What part of the agent's workflow could be made smoother/faster by using a bot? - What processes can a bot take care of faster than a human? -e.g, one client identified that reservations and cancellations take place faster via self-service than via agents. Understand your caller/callee. After you define what problem your bot can solve, the next most important point to consider is your target customer. Start by asking: is my targeted customer/end-user ready for a voice bot? Once you’ve affirmed this, figure out what number and nature of questions the customer will be willing to answer. For example, when a customer opts for self-service via a bot, they may be willing to answer a few questions, so that the bot understands their problem. When you are making a sales call, your prospect may be willing to answer only a simple, pertinent question asked by your bot. In neither case can it bother people with deep, multiple levels of questioning. It cannot be like: first, you answer 10-15 questions, then I will solve your problem! Like a well-trained agent, it should grasp the customer’s issue within 2-3 questions. How does this questioning occur? let me demonstrate with the example of someone calling our contact center regarding a problem they’re facing with their telephony software: The first question the bot asks, [...]

3 key concerns while developing your call center’s voice bot 2020-01-16T12:16:33+00:00

Call scheduling for better sales and support

Question: When is the best time to call your customer? Answer: When your customer wants you too! When speaking to the customer, timing matters. How do you ensure that your agents call customers at times that suit them? Are they still jotting appointment times down in a diary? Does your telephony solution let you schedule your outgoing calls in an organized manner? A call scheduler is an important tool to ensure: You call customers/prospects at times they prefer. You demonstrate reliability, by sticking to your promise of calling back at a specific time. How to schedule your sales calls? During Lead Generation When someone fills out a lead form on your website, it's very very valuable. It has probably taken you significant marketing efforts to get them to sign up. Don't squander it all away by calling them when they’re bang in the middle of something else. Industry best practices suggest that you give a preferred callback time and date option on your lead form itself. I suggest giving two time slot options. You can integrate your form with your cloud telephony API and schedule the call to the specified time. During call conversation Sometimes, during phone conversations, your prospect/customer may ask your agent to schedule a follow-up call at a specified time & date. It is imperative that there is a process in place to ensure that the call back takes place at the agreed time and date. Businesses which are prompt, and keep their promise of a call back at a given time are naturally seen as more reliable and get better conversions from their prospects. Scheduling calls in your CRM If your agent has their CRM window open while speaking to the customer, they can use their CRM + telephony integration to schedule calls directly into their contact center software/ telephony solution. Scheduling retries using an auto dialer You autodialer may be set to dial a long list of contacts. What happens to the leads who don't answer in the first try? You need to reschedule these calls. Preferably, this should be automated. These are the different rules you can use to retry the call: Immediately. When a call goes unanswered, the auto-dialer redials immediately. After all primary data has been dialed. When all the contacts in the list have been dialed, the auto dialer will go back and systematically call the unanswered calls. After a specified time. You can set a specific time range for callbacks. For example, you can arrange a call back 2 hours or 4 hours after the call first went unanswered. The next day. Sometimes it's worthwhile to try the same number on a different day of the week. Set your auto dialer to retry the number the next day, and see if it improves your chances. KOOKOO has built-in advanced engine rules that help you experiment and find the time and date that suits your particular dataset/industry/prospect personna. Scheduling as per call history. If your prospect has a call history with [...]

Call scheduling for better sales and support 2019-06-17T17:10:30+00:00

Call Queue Management

Call centers exist to provide speedy customer service and issue resolution. Speed is key; achieved through efficient call queue management. What is call queue management? Simply put, call queue management is the management of call queues to ensure minimal customer wait time and fair workload distribution. When done right, call queue management ensures: Reduced wait times Lowered dropped calls Efficient workload distribution amongst agents Better customer experience Why is call queue management important? If you’re calling a call center, chances are you’re already frustrated. But, to have to wait for assistance, and listen to a recorded message or music only makes it worse! The average customer hold time is 56 seconds (Source: conversational.com). That may not seem like a lot, but after 2 minutes, customers hang up (Source: Small Business Chronicle). In this Inbound Queue Analysis, we can see that out of the 244 queued calls, 55 calls dropped. 70% of business callers in the US are put on hold (Source: Inbound/Outbound). How much lost business and disgruntled customers are we talking about? Substantial! Especially, as 40% of customers in the US attempt a phone purchase (Source: American Teleservices Association). Finally, something doesn’t add up: 90% (or more) of the marketing budget is spent to get customers to call, but only 6% is spent to handle the call (Source: Inbound Telephones Call Center)! By not managing their incoming call load or call queue, businesses are wasting marketing dollars and losing revenue. A good call queue management system is critical. It minimizes and manages call wait or hold times for customers. How to manage call queues efficiently? Good call queue management isn't difficult. Some of our clients’ customer support centers ensure that 90% of their callers connect with live agents within 10 seconds. How can you manage your queues better? Here are 8 ways: Carefully design your IVR and consider self-service. Consider what your IVR requirement is? Do you really need to give your customer multiple level menu options? Many of our clients connect callers to live agents directly. Others divert few customers to live agents and others to IVR, based on caller history/customer value. Consider self-service: For many routine tasks, it's actually preferable to divert customers to self-service. Popular use scenarios: While paying medical bills, customers don’t have to wait in line to be assisted by a live agent, but can follow IVR prompts to pay the co-pay, at their convenience. You can also read our case study on Treebo, a chain of boutique hotels that allows customers to reserve and cancel bookings via self-service. This IVR flow efficiently uses CRM integration and self-service to manage your call queues. Plan call distribution How do you distribute calls amongst your agents? Your ACD or Automatic call Distribution transfers calls to your agents. Broadly speaking, there are two ways of distributing these calls: evenly by number; or by talk time. You need to choose your method in such a way that it is fair to your agents. When you have a [...]

Call Queue Management 2020-02-04T04:47:27+00:00

Setting up an enterprise contact center without changing the telecom provider

When it comes to contact centers, enterprises have different needs from small and medium businesses. For example, our pure cloud offering is extremely popular with SMBs. But when enterprises set up their contact center, they want our tools to work with their existing telecom providers. Is this possible? Yes. Is it advisable? Yes, sometimes. We explore the whys and the how in this article. Setting up an enterprise contact center without changing the telecom provider. Why? In the United States, we are one of the few contact center solutions open to customers getting their own sip trunk while using our software. But, in countries like India, we have been doing this regularly for over a decade. So why do enterprise businesses choose this option? I have listed the top reasons below. See if they resonate with you. Easier billing This stands out as a major reason for us. What customers value are the contact center tools we provide, so they pay us the license fee per month for using it. But the telephony need not be through us. This means that their billing to KOOKOO is a fixed cost output per month, while billing for call charges happens via the trusted telecom partner directly to the client. How does this help? It prevents issues of overbilling. Surprisingly, even major cloud telephony providers often face complaints of overbilling for their call charges. By keeping the billing separate, everything is more transparent. (So, your accounts section is happier too!) Ownership When there is a challenge in voice quality or connectivity, is it actually an operator issue or platform issue? By keeping trunk ownership, enterprises can ensure greater accountability when problems occur. Ease of shifting to another cloud player Shifting your Toll-Free number ( TFN) or Virtual Number ( DID) to another player takes anywhere from 14-30 days. This is a long drawn process. When you own the trunk, shifting is fare easier. For example, it takes little over an hour to plug into our contact center solution and get started. Long-term relations with operators Why do you want to break a long relationship with a trusted telecom provider? Sometimes, this is actually is the reason that keeps enterprises from embracing the many benefits of cloud contact center solutions. Now they can get all the advantages of online contact center tools without breaking this long-term relationship. Backup Of course, since we provide end-to-end solutions for most of our customers, KOOKOO has its own very reliable cloud telephony solution in place too. So, many clients who have kept their telecom provider, subscribe to our services too—as a backup in case they face a problem. Setting up an enterprise contact center without changing the telecom provider. How? So how easy is it to get started on a contact center solution, without changing your telecom partner? As you can imagine, it's not complicated at all. It takes less than an hour to set up and get started. You get access to a world of tools like [...]

Setting up an enterprise contact center without changing the telecom provider 2018-10-17T10:55:31+00:00