Looking for new call center software? What features should you be searching for – and does your provider have them? Here, we look at some of today’s most in-demand call center software features, all of which can be found right here at Chase Data Solutions.
Your call center could not function without high-quality telecommunications technology. It is arguably one of the most important call center software features, creating the backbone of your entire business.
When integrating a new system of call center features, you may choose to bring your own telephony system with you or to embrace a new system. Telecommunications for your business may be done using standard voice, fax, VOIP (voice over internet protocol), audio-visual media such as live video streams, or a combination of any of these options. What works for your call center will be based on the companies your partner with, the consumers you serve, and what kind of technology you have at your disposal.
Interactive Voice Response
IVR – or interactive voice response – technology is one of the best things that has ever happened to telecommunications. How so? Imagine the days of early call centers, when every single call that was received had to be directed by hand. An operator had to greet and receive each call, ask what the concern of the caller was, then direct them accordingly. Oftentimes, callers ended up frustrated by having to repeat their concerns multiple times or were initially misdirected by simple human error.
This isn’t the case in modern call centers. IVR menus are standard call center software features for most industries, allowing consumers who call in to choose from an easy-to-understand list of prompts. These prompts typically list:
- Language options
- Reasons for calls
- Special concern categories if relevant
Once a caller chooses the prompt that is most pertinent to their reason for calling, they are automatically directed into the call-waiting pool for the next step of the process. This entire phase of the call usually takes less than 15 seconds, a fraction of the time it once took when all calls were hand-directed. It saves time, confusion, and frustration on the part of the consumer and the provider.
Automatic Call Distribution
When calls make it past the initial IVR menu, they are directed into a pool of waiting calls of similar type. From here, they are directed by automatic call distribution. This software feature detects the topic of the call, the agents who are available to take that call, and the wait time for each agent if none are currently available. It then connects the call to the first available agent in the pool, lessening wait time for your caller.
A good ACD feature doesn’t just allow for adequate distribution of incoming calls. It also allows for management intervention and assistance where necessary. Some great features you’ll find in the best call center ACD software include:
- Call monitoring – Both live monitoring and recording are often available.
- Conference calling – This allows multiple members of staff to join one call to offer consumers the best solutions to their concerns.
- Call barging – This allows management to quickly intervene by “barging” into a call and conducting quick customer service if things aren’t going well.
- Whisper coaching assistance from management – When an agent needs direction, a member of management can use this feature to speak only to the agent, offering advice during a live call to point them in the right direction.
Real-Time Analyzation of Agent Efficiency
We’ve all had those great days at work when we were really on a roll. Your call center staff is no different. You’ll notice that some days, certain employees are making sales, closing deals, and satisfying customers’ concerns left and right. Those are the employees you want handling more of your calls.
Through real-time analyzation of employee efficiency, your call center software will automatically deduce which agents are having a great day and begin routing more relevant calls to those agents. The software also recognizes when those agents are receiving a high volume of calls, and automatically seeks out the agents who are comparable in performance and have less of a workload. This optimizes employee efficiency without burning out your agency’s brightest stars.
Skill-Based Call Routing
You can’t send every call that comes into your agency to the same few agents who are having a great sales and service day, so where do the rest of the calls go? How does your technology decide how to distribute them?
One call center software feature that helps clear any confusion as to who should handle specific calls is skill-based routing. This means that employees who have trained in and shown proficiency in specific skills related to a type of service call will receive those calls in greater frequency. For the consumer, this means that someone who understands their individual situation is more likely to handle their concern. For your business, this means more satisfied consumers and a higher rate of sales and retention.
Instant Access to Relevant Consumer Information
Few things are more frustrating for a customer on a service call than to have to continually repeat themselves. While this isn’t always avoidable, it can be lessened with call center software features that allow instant access to relevant information for agents assisting consumers. Such information may include:
- Full name
- Date of birth
- Legal address
- Telephone number
- Email address
- Partial social security number (typically the last four digits only)
- Any other information needed to verify the client’s identity
All this data will be readily available with a few clicks, giving the agent the information that they need to continue assisting the client – without having to ask for continual repetition of the same facts.
Ongoing Agent Training Opportunities
Downtime can be a killer for your business’s productivity. Unfortunately, a lull in call activity is inevitable in the world of the call center. Eliminate downtime between calls by using call center software features that offer agents something productive and engaging to do between calls received. Today’s best call center software offers seamless movement from a client assistance screen to a training and engagement screen for the agent, allowing them to utilize downtime for professional growth. This keeps the agent focused and the quality of their work high while continuing to better the overall skills they offer to your company.