7 Outbound Call Center Must-Haves
Do you know what is essential for an outbound Call Center? Which features are Call Center must-haves and which are just a nice addition, looking pretty in the description box? If you don’t have a list of these — make one ASAP it’ll make your life easier.
Usually, when about to go shopping, the first thing we do is make a list. It’s such a common practice that — with the growing technology in our lives — all it takes is downloading the right app. A piece of paper was way too easy to lose, so it’s a good thing. Still, it’s a little bit sad. Losing that list was a great excuse for not buying something (for example, that broccoli your wife wanted to prepare for dinner). The point is: we’re making lists to remember the essentials and stay focused on the matter at hand. It’s not really a problem when you forget about buying those nachos you saw a moment ago, which made you suddenly hungry. However, when you forget the toilet paper… Well, you’re doomed. So, if such a silly thing as a grocery shopping is worth having a list, why would you decide about your business future without one?
Remember, it’s your list
The most common problem with every list that’s ever been made is that they’re not personalized. They should be. Even if something is absolutely necessary for your colleague, that doesn’t mean you need to have it written on your list as well. It may not work for you as well as it does for him. That’s why you should think about every item on your list. Keep in mind that your outbound Call Center isn’t like anyone else’s. Think about that while choosing the right software or any other solution to improve your business. Sure, some things are always going to be common to everyone and thus, should appear on every list no matter who’s holding the pen, stylus or record button. Nowadays, the details of your business and your target market should decide why this or that solution is better. To recognize what’s best you have to know what you want instead of planning to figure it out along the way. That can save you from many fruitless choices and wasteful purchases.
7 Outbound Call Center Must-Haves
Often, you don’t really know what you could benefit from the most. Everything seems to fit. For example softwares, to be honest there’s not really much difference between one and another, so it’s not that easy to tell what should clinch. Of course, it’s a nice feature to be able to check the weather for the city you’re calling to, but is it something of critical importance? I honestly doubt it.
Here’s what I’d add to my list of Call Center must-haves, if I was to make one:
Although I’m trying to stay a little bit out of the obvious positions on that list and present you something different, a dialer isn’t something I can omit. That is especially because the one you should aim for is not that obvious : should it be automatic, predictive or something completely different? It depends on your business model, employees, and target market. I’m familiar with CrazyCall’s intelligent power dialer, so that would be my first choice.
Key performance indicators (KPIs), metrics, rates–aren’t these the basis for your performance improvement? Measuring something usually gives a clear overview of the situation. If you do measurements frequently you can identify a trend: you instantly know that something went in the wrong direction and some decisions need to be made or changed. Believe me, KPIs are the Call Center’s best friends. However, it may be a little bit tedious and difficult to track them on your own, so it’s nice to consider having a software that does it for you.
3. Automatic Emails
It may not be the most crucial out of all Call Center must-haves, but it is still important. You could think that it’s not really such a problem for an agent to send an email after having a conversation with a lead. Sure, it’s not. Still, remember that the little things can be tedious and can make work way less pleasant or accurate, with typos and such. Working as a sales agent isn’t the most enjoyable of jobs for some people, so making your employees’ lives a little bit easier seems to be a nice thing. It saves time as well, so they can make more calls. It’s a win-win.
4. Call Monitoring
Being able to listen to agents without letting them know you are doing it is essential.
A manager can’t be anywhere and everywhere, paying attention to each team member all at once. The time required to physically monitor has proven to be really ineffective. It’s not only difficult for managers, but for sales agents as well! Imagine sitting by your desk, speaking with yet another lead. It’s stressful enough without having the boss breathing down your neck. What’s more, when you know that someone is listening to you at any exact moment, you act more tense. You’re nervous, starting to weigh your words more. You begin second-guessing what you said and thus, aren’t focusing on the person you called. The situation is completely unnatural. And now think about the manager who’s listening. Once he starts thinking about how the employee is acting, there’s no way that his view on the agent’s work is going to be comprehensive or accurate. The ability for supervisors to monitor calls unobserved, is imperative.
5. Call Recording
Recording calls is one of the best features to tell you exactly what you should do to have better results and increase your sales. When you listen to your agents calls and what they are saying in real time, it’s easy to miss something important. For example, you’ll focus on the tempo of agent’s talk instead of thinking about how the lead reacted to the question asked. That’s why call recordings are such a good thing: you can listen to any conversation you want — even days after it was made. If you ask me: that’s an amazing opportunity to improve your scripts.
6. Cloud-based software
Cloud-based applications are no longer “the future.” They’re already the here and now. And they belong to Call Center must-haves. That’s not only because data is more secure that way (e.g., there are no worries about your data getting lost just because your laptop broke). Cloud storage is more convenient as well, since all you need is the Internet (which nowadays is not really hard to find) and you don’t have to worry about which device you’re using or where it’s located. When it’s more common to live on the move, as we tend to do these days, there’s absolutely no need for relying on static, outdated systems.
7. Motivational system
There’s one additional item for your list that I’ve written about before. I think it’s one of ultimate Call Center must-haves — even though it cannot be completely provided by software. I’m talking about your motivational system. Agents are the core of telesales. If they don’t enjoy their work at all, if they aren’t sufficiently rewarded — it’s going to negatively influence your sales. Taking care of your employees isn’t something you should forget to include in the budget. It can cost you dearly.
Most important feature
You probably wonder which one from these listed above is the most essential one. If you ask me, I’d say that I can’t imagine a well developed Call Center that doesn’t use at least three features out of those I’ve listed. Although, to be honest: if I were to choose the most important out of all Call Center must-haves, I’d say: analytics. In my opinion, noting the trends and measuring factors that make you able to improve your business is elementary. As I’ve stated many times before: it’s way easier, if you know how to measure what needs to be changed.
A final tip: While making your list of Call Center must-haves, do organize your items from the most to the least important ones. After all, having the priorities clarified is crucial for development. Identifying the very top priorities as your “deal breakers” (those items your Call Center cannot do without) makes your final decision much easier and faster. You can rule out options that don’t have those functions and concentrate on deciding between the options that do. You can have as many items on your list as you want. However, the more requirements you have, the harder finding fitting solutions will get. It’s better to have 5 strong points, that you can’t imagine living without, than 15 you’re not even sure if you’ll use.