Five Steps to Customer Satisfaction Surveys in Contact Centres

We regularly discuss the ways to handle complaints and dissatisfied customers, simply because customer satisfaction is the cornerstone of any business. Complaints should always be seen as an opportunity to put things right as, for each disgruntled person who gives you a piece of their mind, there are many more that don’t but just go straight to your competitors. Continue reading

What is Erlang Calculation and How Can It Help Your Call Centre

In the 1920s, Danish mathematician Erlang created the eponymous formula. A pioneer in queuing theory, his work is still the foundation of any network analysis and switchboard staffing.

The formula is a complex equation taking into account the number of call agents available at any given time, the number of calls waiting and the Average Handling Time, as well as adding a value for random arrival of calls into the contact centre. It is still the main tool used today to calculate how much staff a contact centre needs to keep waiting times within targets.

Waiting time is often the main chief of complaint from customers so it is one of the most important things to get right. With an Erlang calculator, you can remove the guesswork and have the right number of operators at all time, without under- or over-staffing.

However, it is important to note that the results need slight tweaking. For example, the formula assumes that there are no lost or abandoned calls, which would have been the case in the 1920s as there were far fewer phones, but doesn’t reflect reality in today’s busy call centres. We recommend that you check your statistics for abandoned calls so that you can decide how to adjust numbers accordingly.

Another area that shows Erlang’s age is that it struggles to handle the variety of tasks and communication channels available nowadays as it was primarily devised to calculate staffing needs for inbound calls only. Today, a call centre is likely to regroup both inbound and outbound calls. Staff are also likely to manage other interaction with customers such as emails, social media and webchat. There again, Erlang results need to be moderated.

You also need to apply shrinkage -i.e. the percentage of staff not actively working because of bathroom breaks or illness for example – to the numbers the Erlang calculation comes back with. A good way to check how much variation there is between its number and reality is to compare its result with your own statistics.

Another important point to remember is that even the smallest variance can translate into huge differences in staff number so they shouldn’t be ignored.

If you are looking for a dedicated contact centre, contact Corporate Connect on 0800 230 000.

Four Simple Ideas to Engage with Existing Customers in 2018

It costs 4 to 6 times more to acquire new clients than keeping existing ones; an existing customer is 14 times more likely to buy more products or services from you, and 73% are more likely to recommend you. Yet, despite these crystal-clear statitics, businesses’ priority is still very often about capturing new clients to the detriment of existing customers. Continue reading

How to Design a Call Centre Training Programme

Training your contact centre staff is essential to conveying your brand’s message, delivering outstanding customer service, create a knowledge base in your company and motivating your staff. However, for many contact centres, training is limited to learning how to use systems and listening in to calls next to a more experienced agent for days. Continue reading

5 Ways to Reduce Telephone Demand

For large organisations and companies, handling calls is a sizeable part of their budget and call centres are often scrutinised to find areas where savings can be realised.

A common strategy is to reduce staff, but this also usually has the unwelcome effect to lower the quality of the customer service you can provide. The trick is therefore to reduce telephone demand effectively so that you need fewer agents without compromising on service. Continue reading