Serco Whitepaper - 'Mitigate the risk of a poor customer experience'
1. Understand Your Call Demand
It is critical you understand the reasons why customers call and when they call. You need to know what “normal” looks like. If there is a spike in call volume you know if it is a planned event, or something you were not expecting.
As a general rule always be familiar with your Top 10 call types and track those by interval to ensure there is no change in customer behaviour. Monitor the trends and ensure you have an understanding if you have a declining or increasing demand volume in any of the call types.
Always ensure you review your contact forecasting model. Best in class is to forecast your contact volume to +/- 3% accuracy.
2. Identify The Cause
If you are experiencing a surge in call volumes that is not a planned event it is critical that you understand very quickly what the cause is. The quickest ways to understand what is going on is to ask a group of agents why are customers calling. You will very quickly get an idea if you have a major incident on your hands that you need to respond to or nothing more than a blip.
Remember to always get to the root cause, so if for example customers are calling because the website is down remember to apply the ‘five why’s’.
But why?, but why?, but why? and so on, by the fourth or fifth but why? you will usually have got to the root cause.
Use your technology. If you have speech analytics you can very quickly use the technology to identify the most common phrases that customers are using.
For example, you might be an airline and your website is down and customers can no longer book online. Speech analytics will likely pick up the phrase ‘the website is down’.
3. Take Immediate Action
It is important you create more resource capacity quickly to handle the increase in call volume. Remember, to achieve a good level of service it is all about the balance of supply and demand.
There are 4 key actions you can take immediately:
1 Cancel all planned shrinkage - for example training, briefings, coaching
2 Move breaks and lunches to help balance the resources aligned to the call volume demand
3 Request additional agent hours - ask agents to remain if they are at the end of a shift
4 Ask team leaders and support staff to take calls if trained.