HR GENIUS BLOG
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Queue time is one of the many metrics contact centre mangers optimize their staffing models around. Simply put, this metric measures the time the average customers spends waiting in queue for an employee to answer his query. This simple metric has many names within the multi-lingual contact centre industry; average wait time, average speed to answer and many more.
For a long time ACD stats used to be the only way to acquire reliable metrics, the contact centre industry simply had no other choice. Those stats and the metrics they produced used to be our only “compass” when it came to reading efficiency and effectives of customer service.
But as the customer service landscape is changing, so are the metrics, and new possibilities arise and take the scene by storm.
“Net Promoter Score” and “Customer Effort Score” are nothing new for leading brands and many business managers. Those two metrics are designed to measure customer lifetime value, focusing on long term values instead of short term cost optimization only.
The best part about introducing and implementing new metrics is the opportunity to correlate them against the old ones.
Are we optimizing towards the wrong metrics?
Customers can be perfectly happy and pleased with the customer experience even if they had to wait 15 minutes or more in queue, what matters is the outcome and the customer journey up until the very end.
But as with all metrics, there are flaws. Net Promoter Score and Customer Effort Score take a huge negative impact from just transferring a call to another agent – this kills the scores almost instantly.
So you can only imagine what happens when a customer query needs to be transferred to multiple agents.
Instead of the “out with the old, in with the new” approach, the contact centre industry needs to embrace the best of both worlds, instead of “hopping on a bandwagon” once again.
Social media is here to stay, there is no doubt about it.
Most of the time representatives are having a hard time getting the upper management involved, and explaining how social media ROI works seems at times an impossible task.
Maybe we should take a step back and stop perceiving social media as the “end-all, be-all” solution, and start perceiving it as what it truly; a valuable tool and influence channel that should solidify all our combined efforts.
Getting your brand out there and promoting it, is the most important factor of incorporating social media into your business strategy.
You simply have to be “there”.
Social media allows brands and organizations to tell their side of the story and build their presence online. Users can take a peek behind the scenes and glance at the process’s or check out the company culture before applying for a job.
Posting detailed information about the hiring process is one of many great features of social media, candidates will know exactly what to expect and will be able to decide if they even want to begin the hiring process – time gained for both parties involved.
The dreaded social media ROI.
Obtaining accurate social media ROI might be an impossible task, especially when you want to examine how many people you hired thanks to Facebook or Twitter, or how many of the active user base on your corresponding profiles are loyal customers.
Instead we should be looking at the tremendous value social media provides in brand and reputation building.
And how does your brand look online, is it a thriving online community or a ghost town?
The multichannel approach despite its many upsides and customer centric features has left the contact centre industry in a mess, and managers and supervisors are in dire need of a solution that will help them streamline the management process – its name is workload management.
It provides the right facilities, at the right time while managing the workload but is not a work-flow driver, just a smart overlay that unifies and solidifies all the channels that are used by customer service to create the customer journey.
Having your work-flow systems like BPM and CRM unified with all communications channels (social media, email, fax, web forms and forums and many more) is a great asset it today customer service industry.
Aligning all the crucial parts of your business has never been easier!
Ah yes, the good ole marketing vs sales clash, quanity vs quality, so where should we start?
To be frank, sales reps need less leads, to be precise, fewer unfiltered, unrefined leads.
If a lead is properly and consistently nurtured and developed its chances of “flourishing” into a completed sale increase.
The main problem within companies is that the marketing teams are rewarded for quantity, and not lead quality. Technology also helps with generating those leads at an astounding pace at a relatively low cost. Also, the fact that more than a third of sales reps are missing the quota, doesn’t help either.
To simplify, the usual report from marketing looks like this “Great quarter in lead generation. We generated more than 1564 leads from all sources – that’s a 20% gain over last year. Despite higher PPC cost, we managed to keep our leads under the standard price.”
So when sales executives take a closer look at these not-so-awesome leads, their response is quite harsh:
- No defined budget info? Begone!
- Not a senior enough lead? Bye, bye!
- Planned for next year? Toodlez!
The whole mess goes back and forth, without a proper resolution. It’s quite insane, marketing teams think they are keeping their end of the bargain, and they are if you consider things from the volume only standpoint, while sales are dismissing leads, rightfully so, since they are not nurtured.
Companies are also to blame, gambling with leads is a common practice. Why pay twice the average price for a well nurtured, quality lead when you can, pay half of that and gamble a bit, while receiving double the amount of leads with a conversion rate ranging from 20% to 60%.
Lead vendors that dabble in such practices are equivalents of “sweat shops”, pumping out leads “en masse” without consideration for quality. In return companies waste millions on low quality, poorly qualified leads. There’s also a metric to justify this sort of behavior, ROMI (return on marketing investment) – sometimes, as little as 20% close rate is considered good. Although, the actual return is in fact close to zero.
Since quantity over quality, simply doesn’t cut it, what steps should companies undertake?
- Measure the quality and cost per ACTUAL lead.
- An “overseer” (c-level executive) that keeps sales and marketing in check, evaluating their work and making sure both departments have the companies best interest in mind, and not their own.
- A special group whose focus is nurturing leads till they are sales ready, if a particular lead can’t gain momentum this special team will “look under the hood” and diagnose.