The Contact Center’s Opportunity to Deliver Strategic Value

By harnessing what’s learned from interacting with customers, contact centers (call centers) have enormous potential to provide valuable intelligence and support to other parts of the company. Consider the value when the contact center: Helps operational areas or manufacturing units pinpoint and fix quality problems, which boosts customer satisfaction and repeat purchases, reduces costs associated with warranties and repairs and …

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Thriving Customer Relationships

What’s the formula for success in the new era of customer relationships? Boiled (waaayyy) down: 1. Connect. Listen to your customers, wherever they are, in whatever channel they choose. Join the conversation. 2. Engage. Interact with them, appropriately, proactively; put a face on your brand and build relationships that have staying power. 3. Thrive. Learn from interactions, and build a …

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The Measures Every Contact Center (Call Center) Should Have

The Measures Every Contact Center Should Have By Brad Cleveland These key categories of measures and objective are as important for Facebook and Twitter interactions as they are for traditional contact channels. Establishing the right measures and objectives is one of the most important responsibilities in leading and managing a call center successfully. But there’s a significant inherent challenge, which …

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Trends We are Watching: Call Centers are in a Growth Mode

Call centers (contact centers) are growing. Here are a few samples of recent news stories: WLBZ2, Maine: http://tinyurl.com/3lcf93c Times and Transcript, New Brunswick:  http://tinyurl.com/3dnfm4r ABC News: http://abcnews.go.com/WNT/video/jobs-call-centers-back-us-14243481

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The New Era of Customer Relationships: Are You Ready?

We are seeing the emergence of the greatest customer movement in history.  Is your organization ready?  Are you ready? Studies reveal that the vast majority of consumers now use search engines, social communities and feedback sites to better understand a company’s commitment to service before making brand or product decisions.  Bad experiences (even if they are one in many thousands …

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Shaping Your Customer Access Strategy for Social Media

(Note, a full version of this post recently appeared in ICMI’s Global Report on Call Center Practices.  To subscribe, see link at bottom.) While social media projects often begin as marketing initiatives or as the responsibility of newly established cross-functional teams, the contact center invariably assumes a more central role as resource requirements for listening and interacting become evident. To put effective services …

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Perspective on First Call Resolution

First-call resolution (FCR) is an increasingly popular performance measure in customer contact environments. And that’s a good thing: Unresolved contacts are a common source of customer dissatisfaction, and the organization tends to incur many additional expenses (e.g., repeat calls, rework, etc.) when issues are not fully resolved. However, despite clear benefits, FCR must be implemented carefully. Several important lessons have …

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Leading organizations are restructuring for better service

Many organizations are restructuring so that all channels of contact with customers are under the same management umbrella.  This is causing enormous internal structural change that involves IT, HR, marketing, operational areas – and virtually every other department.  Whatever the final structure, all contact channels must be planned and operated cohesively – each impacts the others. To Whom Does the …

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History’s Most Powerful Consumer Movement?

Some believe we are seeing the emergence of the greatest consumer movement in history. I agree. Studies suggest that the vast majority of consumers now use search engines and sites such as the http://www.consumerist.com/ to review the comments of other customers before making brand or product decisions. And bad customer experiences – even if they are one in many thousands …

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The Tough Economy is Forcing Critical Thinking

Making the right decisions requires both intuition and discipline. Although you can’t boil leadership – that’s of course what we’re really talking about – down to a simple checklist, there is something powerful about focusing on the things that matter most. So… what to do now? Here are some suggestions on high-level priorities: Develop a global view of your organization’s …

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