3 Solutions to Improve Your Call Center Performance
Sometimes you are moving at a pace that seems too slow. All you want is to gather a little speed–feel the rush of excitement instead of that slow, but constant tempo of security. The old saying claims, “Nothing ventured, nothing gained.” With that as inspiration, I’m going to present you 3 (slightly risky or controversial) solutions to improve your Call Center performance faster. So, without further ado, let’s begin:
Use a Local phone number
This suggestion truly doesn’t seem to be threatening. It’s a common and effective move that increases connection rates. Your leads are more likely to answer the phone when they see familiar phone numbers and area codes. A call from a local number helps you to achieve that “familiarity”. People connect with the familiar; higher connection rates equal your chance for increased Call Center performance; and that’s your aim, isn’t it?
How to get a Local Phone Number?
Nowadays, it’s not really hard to get anything when you have the internet just one click away. Improving Call Center performance is no longer something you have to think about on your own. The calling software you use should help you get local phone numbers. Of course, you can spend hours trying to figure out how to get them on your own, but usually all it takes is a message to your provider’s support team (at least that’s how it works if you’re using CrazyCall). They’ll check whether getting local phone numbers in the country you want to call is possible, how to do it under that country’s laws and then, give you proper solution options.
Benefits Of Local Presence:
Getting a local phone number is a local presence dialing term. Simply speaking, it’s using a local area code to make you seem like a local caller to the leads whose numbers you’re dialing. That creates 2 benefits:
Increased contact rate
People are more likely to answer a call from a number they recognize as local. That’s because a local phone number makes them think that the call may actually concern them more than a long-distance or international call might. After all, it’s local. Therefore, the caller must be familiar with the problems and viewpoints of the local community.
Increased possibility of success
Being seen as a local business is a good thing. That is not only because supporting local businesses has recently become really popular. It’s not just a passing fad. People tend to sympathize with their locals and support local businesses. People are just more likely to do business with someone who seems familiar.
Since we’ve established the benefits of being seen as a local business, it’s time to speak about the inevitable risks.
Easy to lose trust
Starting a healthy relationship with your client by only appearing to be a local business may not necessarily be a great idea. It may upset someone who answered the phone because of a deception.
… or the call
First impression is what matters most when making sales calls. You should do your best to make a good one. In some cases, calling from a local phone number, when you’re not even close to being local, may cause the lead to “shut the door” just after you introduce yourself. It’s not hard to upset someone, especially in your role as a sales agent. You probably know much about that already.
Use Staff Competitions
Some managers go for using competition; others hesitate. Although it’s a popular method of motivating employees, there’s a little bit of controversy about it — especially, when it comes to implementing it in a Call Center. Nevertheless, there’s no doubt that it can improve Call Center performance.
What It’s All About
To put it in the simplest words: staff competitions are about comparing your employees with each other (or comparing their performances, to be specific). The one with a better result usually gets some sort of reward; for example a financial bonus. Some managers compare individual employees against each other. However, comparing individual employees isn’t the only rule. It’s often the case that teams compete between each other.
Basically, all you need to have to implement staff competitions in your company is some sort of task and an evaluation system. You can either make your employees compete against each other in one matter (for example successes made in a specific period of time) or the competition can concern overall performance — how they rank across all key performance indicators (KPIs).
Benefits Of Staff Competition:
Competitiveness is a good thing. It boosts ambition to have a better score than others. With the promise of a reward or simply the satisfaction of being better than someone else, agents are way more eager to improve Call Center performance by improving their individual and/or team performance.
When your agents start to compete, the bar is naturally going to get higher. They may not actually get better and better as each day passes, but they’ll try to break through their own limitations. Through that, they’ll learn more about being an effective sales agent.
Working in a Call Center is already stressful without a sales agent knowing his performance is constantly being compared with someone else’s. That may be a negative influence on the atmosphere in the office. If so, it could easily lower the motivation your people have for coming to work every day.
Perception of supervisory bias
In some cases it may seem that the comparison is not completely fair. That can happen when one person is on better ground than others with the manager or coworkers. It also could occur when the competitors don’t have equal backgrounds, i.e., they don’t have the same experience levels.
Use Of Cold Calling
What? I know. It’s hard to find someone who is fond of cold calling. To be honest, there’s not much to like about it. You’re making unsolicited calls to cold leads*. Usually, you don’t even get the chance to present your offer, since the leads hang up as soon as you introduce yourself.
*Cold lead – a lead that has never contacted you, has never even been interested in your service and has no idea why on earth are you interrupting his or her day with an unsolicited call.
Benefits Of Cold Calling:
Sometimes it’s impossible to avoid cold calling, for instance, when you’re new on the market and nobody knows you. It’s hard to get people’s attention without reaching out to them, so making cold calls is one way to do it. There’s a chance some of the people will be interested in what you’re offering but just haven’t had an opportunity to hear about you yet.
Defining your target group
Cold calling can help you find and clearly define your target group. While calling cold leads you have the chance to know precisely who is dealing with the problems for which you have a solution. That’s crucial for more exact targeting, making successful sales calls, bettering your telesales skills, and improving Call Center performance.
Cold calling can make a job more stressful. There’s a high likelihood that the lead is going to be irritated. Some leads are nice about it, some are really impatient and others are just downright rude, even going so far as to swear at the caller. Different accusations and dealing with the constant annoyance of leads can easily turn the job of sales agent into a pain. No one can forget how high employee turnover is in Call Centers.
Calling “ain’t” cheap. Of course, there are some ways to make cold calling more profitable, but that’s still not really enough to think that it’s completely worth all the stress and the money invested. It’s really doubtful that cold calling will “pay for itself” in the long run–it certainly won’t in the short-term.
Out of the various ways to improve your Call Center performance there are not many that will give you an immediate result. You can play it safe, but that will take time and while you’re be doing it, some of your competitors are going to climb the success ladder. Faster ways may get you in trouble or cause losses, but they can also increase your conversion rates and step up the tempo of your performance. It’s all up to you and what you think will work for your staff and target markets. My recommendation: search for your best solution (regardless of whether it’s the more or less risky one) and keep moving forward.