Being able to anticipate customer issues will allow you to respond to queries and complaints more effectively. So instead of just surviving whatever crises that comes your way, knowing the most common problems your customers raise will allow you to plan ahead.
In the long run, this will help bring down the volume of calls you receive. You may also be able to implement permanent solutions to recurring problems and prevent new ones from spreading. This way, you can greatly improve the customer experience and speed up problem resolution. The result? Stronger customer relationships and a positive brand image.
To achieve this, the first thing you need to do is to maximize the use of resources that are already available in your contact center. Here are four ways to do this.
1. Listen to customer calls.
Listening to calls may be time-consuming, but it will let you gain firsthand information about customer service issues. Plus, you can assess people’s emotions by taking note of the tone of their voice during the call, letting you gain more insights other than the problem itself.
Be sure to identify whether the call you’re listening to is the first time the customer has contacted you about their concerns, or it’s merely a repeat call. Also, carefully evaluate the source of the problem. If it’s caused by inefficiencies in another department, you may need to seek that department’s help in resolving the problem for good.
Organize your notes and observations into an easily understandable format. This way, you’ll be able to share them with your call center agents. They can then use these as a guide in handling similar transactions in the future.
2. Gather input from agents.
As the frontline employees who directly interact with customers on a daily basis, agents are a great source of information. Chances are, they already have plenty of useful insights about the customer service issues your contact center handles.
Make sure to ask employees about the trends they’re seeing in terms of the complaints being raised or the channels being used by customers. Also, encourage them to point out any inefficient processes that are getting in the way of problem resolution.
Your task as a manager is to ensure that these details are transformed into strategies that will optimize your call center’s overall operations.
3. Conduct customer surveys.
Although this isn’t a new idea, many companies still fail to maximize the advantages of conducting customer surveys. It’s probably because it involves plenty of work—from information gathering, to data organization, and analysis.
But if you want to collect consumer insights and discover what customers truly want, surveys will allow you to do so. You can even distribute them online via survey hosting websites for easier data collection.
4. Collect data from your CRM tool.
A customer relationship management or CRM tool is one of the finest innovations for call centers, and it’s especially useful if you’re trying to identify your top customer service issues. For instance, some of these applications can categorize transactions according to the nature of the problem being discussed. They also record other details such as length of transaction and the channel used. All these could be useful when revamping your customer support strategy.