As we speed towards the close of our third official month in lockdown, it’s time to start thinking about the future. And that means thinking about how to transition back to the contact center.
But what risks will the post-pandemic contact center manager expect? And how can they mitigate them?
Here are the four biggest risks we think face the post-pandemic contact center:
Risk #1: A COVID-19 outbreak amongst your staff
This is by far the biggest concern of employers across all industries, but it’s particularly pertinent for the call center. The close working conditions and high staff numbers meant contact centers were called out as a breeding ground for coronavirus early in the pandemic.
There are a lot of precautions — such as extra cleaning and social distancing — that you can take as part of your post-pandemic transition strategy to prevent this happening. But you should still plan for a secondary lockdown due to the risk of this happening to the wider community.
Risk #2: A rapid fall in customer demand
Whether due to a swift change in consumer habits post-lockdown or a failing economy, a fall in demand is another major risk to the contact center as we transition out of lockdown.A drastic fall in demand post-pandemic is a major risk to some contact centers - make sure you plan for this eventuality. #cctr #cctremanagement #cctrstrategy Click To Tweet
Make sure you plan for this eventuality by exercising caution when making any financial commitments in the near future, and ensuring you can be flexible in your staffing commitments should this occur.
Risk #3: A rapid rise in customer demand
On the flip side, there is also the possibility that customer demand may increase post-lockdown. You may not view this as a risk, but it certainly can be if you’re caught unprepared.
If your contact center has been struggling to meet service levels and you’re just clinging on until this is ‘all over’, a sudden increase in demand could be devastating.If your contact center is struggling to meet service levels and you're clinging on until this is 'all over', another sudden change could be devastating. #cctremanagement #cctrstrategy Click To Tweet
Install the technology and instill processes now to cover you if customer habits don’t return to pre-pandemic norms — or rapidly increase as life goes back to normal.
Risk #4: Your agents won’t return to the office
There is a growing concern among businesses that they will have trouble getting certain employees to return to the office post-lockdown. You may find agents citing concerns about the risk of contamination at work or when commuting as reasons not to return the office.
It will be hard to make an argument against this in the light of three months of remote working and the sunken costs involved in installing those systems.
This is already a growing topic amongst business leaders and there is already talk of legislation around this in the near future, although that could be some way off.
Protecting Your Contact Center Post-Pandemic
Right now, all we really have to go on is history and speculation. But you can be sure of one thing — coming out of lockdown is going to involve just as much change as going into it.If you want your contact center to survive & thrive the post-pandemic transition, you're going to put together a post-pandemic strategy. #cctremanagement #cctrstrategy #postpandemic Click To Tweet
If you want your contact center to ‘survive & thrive’ through the transition, you’re going to put together a post-pandemic strategy.
Given the number of unknowns, this can seem daunting. If you would like some help or inspiration, download our free ‘Creating a Post-Pandemic Strategy’ workbook below.