Customers are becoming less patient with slow customer service and are voting with their feet and money by leaving organisations they have decided delivered 'poor customer service". Over a third of customers have left an organisation as a direct result of the substandard service they received (Yahoo).
Looking specifically at the contact centre, whilst customers are waiting in a queue they are likely to become increasingly agitated or annoyed the longer the waiting time, increasing the likelihood they will hang up and become another abandoned call statistic.
When they call in again, typically referred to as 'failure demand', it places an artificial and unnecessary strain on the contact centre, lengthens call handling time as the first 30 seconds or more are spent handling the complaint, and reduces the total number of customers that can be served.
Below are three tips which you can proactively implement to reduce your queue times and call abandonment rates.
- Offer call backs – Many customers will gladly accept the offer of a call back compared to the alternative of waiting in a queue. This is especially true if they are short of time and can wait several hours for the answer to their question. It also benefits those customers who are not willing to accept a call back, as the queue time will be made shorter as other customers accept the offered call back.
- Perform data analysis of demand– Depending on the industry, many organisations experience a large spike in demand after a weekend or bank holiday which pushes the contact centre beyond its normal operating levels. Analyse these historic periods of high demand to proactively plan for the future, allowing your contact centre to be appropriately staffed for peaks in demand.
- Time-shift demand as required – Typically during the course of a day the demand on a contact centre widely fluctuates, potentially causing problems of over- and under-staffing, both of which cost the organisation money. By offering call backs to customers during the busiest periods and then making the call backs during times of low demand, the overall activity level of the contact centre can be kept fairly constant. This 'time-shift' technique is very cost effective as customer demands are met with less staff than were previously required.
Download our Case Fact Sheet to see further tips from our solution experts on reducing queue times and abandoned calls rates.
Stay tuned for Part 2 of our blog on reducing queue times and call abandonment rates.