One of the core functions of our team is to obtain information from various service providers. Each day we’re on the phone trying to confirm details and it seems like every service provider we call has a message that says “Due to unusually high call volume, our wait time is greater than expected…”. Too many organizations choose to fall behind, rather than catch up.
High customer service hold time is the “new normal”.
Managing customer service call volume in a call center isn’ easy. But it also shouldn’t be this hard. If your organization has the same pre-recorded “unusually high” call volume message in your phone menu no matter the time of the day or day of the week, here’s a new flash: It’s not “unusual”, it’s your normal call volume.
At some point, preferably before your customers are irritated, you have to adjust to the new normal.
Don’t excuse the new customer service normal, plan for it.
Don’t put a message on your phone and say ‘we’re sorry, but we’re not coping’.
- Hire more people to answer the phone.
- Train your customer service team to be more efficient, effective, quicker to get to the answer.
- Provide better details on your Web site to answer common customer questions.
- Change processes that cause excessive customer questions.
The guys over at Manager Tools apply this “new normal” way of thinking, and planning for the customer to your personal actions.
If your business is growing, then your workload increase might be the new normal. Or if the company is laying people off, then doing your job and what was previously done by someone else is also the new normal.
For great customer service, you have act. To deliver an exceptional customer experience, you have to adapt. What can you start doing? What can you do different? In what ways can you be better? What will make the biggest difference to the customer?
As the needs and wants of the customer change, what will you do with customer service to keep up?
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