Posted by : Frank Martin Thursday, June 13, 2013

When it comes on an organization's success, one can't simply pass by without paying the necessary amount of attention to customer service. However, given the financial crisis context, companies have become more attentive to how they distribute their budgets and how they handle the associated customer support means. If your company is on a tight budget, no need to despair, as there are some things which you can do to boost your employees and customers engagement hassle-free. Here are the 6 most important tips for a successful customer support on a budget:

1. Reduce the AHT (Average Call Handling Time)

A modern call center needs investment in the latest technology. An invaluable tool in this regard is represented by computer telephony integrated with screen pop-up technology, which generates relevant information to the agents, and thus reduces the average AHT level. This way, customers' satisfaction is enhanced too, as the client does not have to answer so many questions which he identifies as repetitive.

2. Evaluate the call centers' workflow

A permanent monitoring of customer service activities (historical graphic evaluation) can lead to a major solutions improvement. By taking all measures to make client interaction transparent, you can easily come up with new ideas regarding how to make things better, faster and smoother, and how to correct any problems which seem to be creating real difficulties.

3. Use the right solutions for outsourcing

Outsourcing represents the best alternative for increasing a business's capital and optimizing its resources without the need for huge investments. It is also an economic resource for customer service, which guarantees value-added for any business service. However, it's imperative for the supplier you choose to be highly certified and leading in his niche for increased competitiveness.

4. Adapt to consumers' expectations

A top customer service division can approach the needs of the customers at any time, and not just those of the company. To remain in a leading market position you must be able to outcome consumers' expectations everytime. Note that sometimes it takes ten or twelve positive experiences only to outset a negative one. Call centers represent the most vulnerable channel of customer loyalty that can generate cost and profit efficiency. The clever corporate sector is already testing out programs like Voice of the Customer (VOC). In addition, one can easily resort to analytics for finding out which the consumer's expectations are.

5. Use SaaS (Software as a Service)

To lock money in hardware in a collapsed economy implies a high risk. Not only that you risk losing profits, but you also have a high chance of disappointing your customers and employees. Therefore, you have to select the ownership type of costs in order to keep up with the competition and remain on the safe side.

6. Take advantage of technology

Bringing a new customer will cost you up to five times more than retaining an existing customer loyal, so investments in modern technology represents the best choice you can make. In this regard you have to think outside the call center, and consider channels such as social media and online support tools. For instance, a live chat support and an extended FAQ base will greatly increase your chances of making a sale. Self-service is also a must given the increased competition nowadays, and in this regard you have to lead the users to discovering the answers to their questions by themselves. In this regard, step-by-step online guidance systems such as WalkMe can represent a great asset.

In the current context, outsourcing has become the best decision for business growth, providing a low cost to management jobs, reduced costs, more productive employees, more experienced management and better control of the data. Additionally, it's imperative to take advantage of the latest technologies if you want to adapt to a market that's continously evolving.

Stefanie Amini is the Marketing Director and Specialist in Customer Success at WalkMe, the world's first interactive online guidance system.  She is chief writer and editor of I Want It Now, a blog for Customer Service Experts. Follow her @StefWalkMe

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