The call center is an extremely stressful work environment. Undoubtedly not for the weak at heart, some call center managers have the grace and tenacity to handle the extreme pressure and create an experience that pleases customers without exceeding dwindling budgets; a truly remarkable feat.
Call center managers essentially pave the way for a successful contact center. Here are 7 great things an effective call center manager does on a daily basis:
1. Talk to Agents
Agents are the voice and ears of your contact center! So why not use them as a means of providing feedback? Agents can tell you what’s important to customers and what the competition is doing. They are an invaluable research tool and can provide a multitude of ideas on how to do things better. Not only does this help you as a call center manager, but it also makes the agents feel like their voice is being heard, their opinions matter and that they hold an important role in the contact center.
2. Act as True Leaders
A call center manager is essentially a team leader. This role is beneficial to a contact center provided it does what the name suggests – lead the team of agents and supervisors. This means being present for your teams to provide support and advice, for coaching and development, and to essentially guide them to success. Conduct a 5-minute round-up meeting every day and get your agents pumped.
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3. Make it a Great Place to Work
Employee happiness and satisfaction is very important. As a call center manager, you must keep a keen eye on this every day. A happy employee will positively rub off on your callers, reduce staff turnover, and happy workers are proven to be more productive. Ensure that you are providing positive feedback, motivating your staff and welcoming feedback. Remember, a happy call center means a more successful one.
4. Keep Your Eyes on Technology
What’s working and what’s not on the technology front? Technology is changing and evolving every day. It may sound tedious, but since technology has so many moving parts, how can staying on top of it not be a daily task? When something isn’t working you’ll be able to spot it early and rectify it.
5. Review Workforce Management
Managing staffing levels to balance workflow and meet demand is an essential activity in the call center. Take some time to make sure you’re doing this to the best of your abilities. In order to meet call demand without under-staffing or over-staffing, you need methods that precisely predict how many agents are needed to handle volume. However, predicting the future is challenging and spikes in call-volume will still exist. Instead of staffing up to avoid this situation and being overstaffed during regular days, you could explore the option of offering call-backs. Allow customers to “press 1” to get a call back when an agent is free, while an automated solution (like Fonolo) can take their place in line. Click here to learn more about cloud-based call-back solutions.
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Read the Contact Center Trends 2020 report here.
6. Get Your Hands Dirty
Do you ever get on the phone and act as an agent? If not, you would be surprised what you can learn from this. Pick up a headset and get talking! Doing so will give you a better understanding of the challenges your workers face and will help you tweak your call center strategy. Not to mention, being seen getting your hands dirty will also garner respect from your staff.
7. Focus on Agent Engagement and Retention
Cited as the biggest challenge by nearly all respondents, the call center is notorious for being a difficult place to work, and makes attracting and retaining quality customer service representatives a tough undertaking. According to Gallup, 70% of U.S. employees are “not engaged” or “actively disengaged”, a symptom of workplaces that don’t effectively captivate employees. To avoid this, ensure that you are actively engaging and rewarding your agents. Empower agents beyond the phone and reward them in ways that are meaningful to them. You can learn more about how to improve agent engagement and retention here.
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