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Incorporating a Call Centre into the RTM Sales Mix

A call centre can manage a wide variety of aspects from sales, telemarketing and support. What sets them apart is the original strategic intent and operational lead. In an environment such as we find ourselves in 2020, taking an ‘omni-channel’ like approach will enable companies to adjust to a new way of operating, leveraging existing resources, and optimizing customer engagement.

 

Leveraging a Call Centre allows organizations to:

·         Support their Sales & Operations with their day to day tasks, reducing the amount of face to face engagement, and hopefully mitigating health and safety issues.

·         Build a Telemarketing wing to drive promotions to maintain product awareness while experiencing limited face time or access to store management.

·         Manage and mitigate potential issues that may arise within the supply chain due to fewer resources in the field.

 

In the long run, incorporating a Call Centre enables the organization to change the focus of a trade rep to be more focused on customer or relationship management, reaching a wider territory, while making fewer calls. In the short term, it allows for flexibility to handle travel restrictions, reduced desire for rep trade calls and remote working.

 

In this article we highlight the key considerations when embarking on incorporating a Call Centre into your existing Route to Market Sales & Operations.

 

Inbound vs Outbound

Typically, Inbound calls are a fundamental aspect of customer service and support call centres. Most companies provide a phone number that customers can reach out to when they have complaints or requests. Inbound reps would then reach out to the relevant trade marketer or account manager to resolve the issue.

 

Outbound calls, as it implies, is initiated by the rep contacting the customer. The proactive engagement that makes it easier for customers to connect with customer service teams. effectively reach a larger base of potential customers, we can also ensure that you are able to pro-actively make contact with your existing customer base on a more regular basis. This two-pronged approach not only boosts customer service and retention, but also increases the number of touch points with the customer, opening up improved opportunities for up-selling or cross-selling of new products.

 

If you’re looking to promote products and drive long-term solutions geared towards customer success, then you’ll lean towards building a customer service call centre. outbound calls are an ideal way to drive increased brand awareness, since every contact is making another potential customer more cognisant of your brand.

 

Scripts & Strategy

Understanding why you have a call centre is half the battle. The purpose drives the message, the process and the KPI. One needs to define the how to receive or make a call, how do they record the call, what do they say, and what happens after the call.

 

At this point whatever that representative says or does becomes, at least in the eyes of the customer, official company policy. It is, therefore, vitally important that organizations take steps to ensure that the live representatives that populate their call centres are consistent, accurate, always following business best practices. Accordingly, most call centres utilise scripts.

 

Great scripts should be:

·         Customer-centric

·         Conversational

·         Confident

·         Flexible

 

Call centre scripts that motivate action are not just those that are well written. They should be crafted with both the rep and the customer in mind. Whether it be support or sales scripts, these tips will get you started in the right direction.

 

Tools

Call centres cannot operate without modern technology. Leveraging the tools and resources already within your supply chain alleviates the potential pain and hassles of acquiring new solutions. Having instant access to customer information is vital to providing a seamless customer experience. Reducing the amount of friction between information gathering and support significantly reduces average handle times and increases customer satisfaction.

 

Your Customer Relationship Management software is the hub around which your client interaction is structured. It will assist you in streamlining your sales & support process and accompanying your customers along their journey.

 

Analyse Performance

Setting targets and tracking performance is vital to any business or department. When embarking on a call centre it is important to strike a balance between optimization and engagement/satisfaction. There is a wide variety of call centre KPIs that can be tracked, measured, and optimized.

 

Call Centre KPIs for Support Teams

·         Average time spent on the phone

·         Calls answered

·         Calls answered within x seconds

·         Average wait time

·         Missed calls

·         Average time to return a missed call

 

Call Centre KPIs for Outbound and Sales Teams

·         Conversion rate

·         Average call length

·         The average speed of answer

 

Call Centre KPIs for Customer Service

·         First-call resolution

·         Percentage of missed calls that lead to a voicemail

·         The average age of query

·         Customer call frequency

 

However, by tracking too many performance metrics, you run the risk of getting too involved in the details to see the situation as a whole. Select a few KPIs which are truly relevant to your goals and corporate strategy. Pick KPIs which reflect areas requiring excellence or improvement, and continuously review them for progression.

 

The Solution

Built from the perspective of an entrepreneurial fast-moving Consumer Goods route to market, FIELDForce was developed specifically to cater for an agile work environment with the customer at the heart of the process. The ability to run a call centre to assist your sales operations from one central application, allowing for inbound or outbound call to be logged, pre-order generation, form capture and note taking.

 

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