How To Manage Spikes In Contact Centers

Customer experience is of prime importance and no more an added benefit of being associated with a brand. And holiday season makes delivering an exceptional experience much important as over 80% of buyers are ready to pay more for better customer experience. According to Gartner, contact centers face spikes of over 10 times during vacations, holiday discounts, promotional events, etc. These stats are enough to explain why you need to stay prepared for contact center spikes. Let’s understand the possible measures that can help you plan for spikes appropriately.

8 Ways to Prepare Contact Center for Spikes

  • Analyze the stats – Apart from some sudden upsurge in calls caused by some natural calamity or exigency, there is always a pattern of call spikes. Such as vacations, occasions with discounts, holidays, etc. Analyze these data and plan the spike management without letting the business go low or contact center shrinkage.

  • Hire more people – If you don’t have budget constraints you can hire new staff. Make it clear to your HR personnel that the hired staff is only required for a short duration (till seasonal high). In such a scenario, the company can get in interns or part-time workers. More staff saves an individual from sinking in pressure or getting demotivated with stress. Also, it helps you to hold your customers from approaching your competitor or getting dissatisfied.

  • Shift employees internally – If the business does not allow new hiring, you can bring in agents from other departments to stable the pressure in a particular section. Also, rotational shifts could be an option. You can pay some incentives for the extra hours delivered by them. The other staff from your service center can be used even in quality assurance to maintain call standards.

  • Manage call volume – Increased call hikes are directly proportional to the high number of calls on hold, but that’s frustrating for both agents and customers. For these days, you need to revisit the agent scripts and interactive voice response (IVR) to further scrutinize it demanding customer queries for a quick resolution. Agents should have access to a knowledge base that stores all the data of your business processes and products that better first call resolution (FCR).

Another option is to create hotlines specific to issues. Call volumes on such issues will be deviated to the desired department, thereby helping in balancing the pressure. Here, experienced staff can help your business gather better responses from customers and reduce the average handle time (AHT).

  • Minimize contact center shrinkage – Yet another major issue during seasonal high is the call center shrinkage where the absenteeism grows high. Subsequently, there are a lesser number of agents at the seat to answer calls which further reduces call resolution and increases customer frustration. This being an entirely big issue in itself require serious monitoring and actions. Read the ways to minimize call center shrinkage.

  • Manage workforce for productivity – Since the call volume is high, you can train each agent on every process. Instead, go for workforce optimization that works on routing and scheduling. A regular performance review will help in realigning tasks for a better outcome. For this, consider workforce grouping, shift patterns, skills, attrition pattern, etc. It should be dependent on technology. Whenever there is change, monitor customer interactions keenly to decide on future actions instantly.

  • Regular supervision – As mentioned in the above point, it is necessary for your contact center to regularly supervise the data and agent’s real-time performance. Setting KPIs and closely monitoring the same can help in guiding agents even during live calls with a supervisor desktop. Also, the real performers will feel motivated to perform better, inspiring other teammates.

  • Install best contact center software solution – Whether it is about the newly hired or internal shifting of employees, you need to have dedicated agent desktops for your staff. It should offer customization to cater to your industry and easy interface for the newbies and other agents to get a quick hold of the same.

Here, purchasing new desktops might hit the budget and during off-seasons, the desktop will not be of use either. A much-needed solution in such a scenario is the NovelVox agent desktop. You will be offered a free agent desktop solution for the number of new seats added to your contact center during call spikes. Below is the list of benefits you can avail with NovelVox agent desktop

Why NovelVox Agent Desktop for Spike Seats

Manage Spikes In Contact Centers

  • Free-agent desktop solution for new seats added with all updated features

  • Intuitive interface with no new training required. Saving the significant time of agents and helping them manage large call volumes

  • Agent scripting tool and in-built gadgets to instantly guide agents and have better call resolutions.

  • 3rd party application integration for a 360-degree view of customer information creating a personalized customer experience.

  • Industry-specific optimized desktop interface to help agents reduce call handle time and edit/add/delete or view only the relevant data

Note: You should be a user of NovelVox Agent Desktop to avail aforesaid benefits

Conclusion

Call center spike management can be tricky as it has no single defined process. Understanding your business requirements, employees, software, and trends in the market can help in creating one process. Work on it annually for higher revenue even during the holiday.