5 Contact Center Holiday Tips

Oct 13, 2012 12:41 AM  By

The holidays are upon us now, which means you’ve hired or are in the process of hiring your seasonal staff. The contact center is not immune to the need for additional staff and since it’s typically the first experience your customers will have with your company, you’ll want to make sure they are trained to deliver the quality service that you and your customers expect. Below are five simple tips to ensure the seasonal staff in your contact centers are prepared for the increased volume during the holidays.

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Multichannel Merchant
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Multichannel Merchant
O+F Operations and Fulfillment

Use experienced agents
To prepare for the increased volume in your contact center, you’ll have hired seasonal staff to help take orders and correspond with customers. It’s best to train the newer seasonal staff on the basics, and leave the more complicated processes to your most experienced team members. This helps to cut down on training time and also helps prevent your regular team members from being spread too thin at the busiest time of year.

Dedicate email agents
Contact centers are no longer just phone centers; they encompass the Internet as well. You’ll want to make sure you have dedicated agents to handle all the email correspondence. It’s important to respond to all inquiries and customer correspondence in a timely manner, typically within 24 hours or less of receiving the initial customer contact.

Script correspondence
To provide consistent service and to also ensure the message is being delivered according to your company standards, it’s a good idea to have prepared scripts available – especially for your email agents. They can always adjust some of the information, but the body or main point of the email should be consistent. This prevents them from having to draft a new email for every situation, which in turn cuts down on correspondence time.

Use live chat
Live chat can be especially helpful during peak times, such as the upcoming holidays. Your agents can provide immediate answers, which will prevent a back log of customer questions or issues from piling up in the contact center.

Intranet FAQ
If you haven’t already, develop an FAQ center on your company Intranet. This will give seasonal staff answers to the most commonly asked questions. Let’s face it; they typically don’t remember everything in training, especially for such a short period of time, so having the additional resources readily available for them is extremely important.

Kim Silva is operations team leader for Fairytale Brownies.