Customers often prefer the real-life contact with a knowledgeable company representative that they receive from company call centers. Call centers handle everything from customer complaints, customer comments and feedback to actual sales and orders. Successful call centers are those that serve the customer and turn the customer into life-time customers by addressing the callers' needs promptly and accurately. An ideal call center consists of several call associates, soundproofed cubicles, software to record each call and its resolution and a knowledgeable manager.
Outline specific goals, both for the entire call center and each individual representative. These goals should include calls taken, calls made, problems resolved and sales made.
Isolate your call center space. It should be away from the hustle of the rest of the business to prevent background noise when speaking with your callers. Set up cubicles or desks with space between them to ensure that your representatives can hear their callers clearly. Consider placing carpet-covered partitions between the desks for further soundproofing.
Design customer service training and sales policies. Write a sales script and a problem-resolution script and procedures to follow when addressing a caller's problems or guiding the caller into a sale. Print out several copies of this material to distribute to each representative.
Train customer service representatives or sales associates. Arrange workshops, create presentations, and do many walk-throughs of situations you expect to arise during the course of an average workday. Host a question and answer session and a brainstorming session. Hold several training meetings throughout the initial set-up period.
Supervise your representatives and associates closely at first to ensure they understand the company's policies.
Be willing to jump in and take calls yourself to make sure you understand what your representatives and sales associates are dealing with on a daily basis.
Call centers generally have a high turnover rate. Set up several training sessions throughout the year to ensure that all employees are up to date on information--especially the new employees.
- call center image by Aisha from Fotolia.com