The essentials needed when setting up a contact centre
Setting up a contact centre is no small undertaking and it should not be taken lightly. From logistics to technology choices, there are many factors to take into consideration and important decisions to be made.
So what are the ‘must haves’ when it comes to setting up a contact centre?
Arguably, the most important element of a contact centre is the people who will be dealing with customers on an almost constant basis. When it comes to picking staff, there are numerous options available, including both internal and external recruitment. Whichever option you go with, you will want to find people who reflect the ‘voice’ of your organisation. You’ll want all your staff to have excellent spoken English and a firm grasp of basic grammar. If you have clients from countries where the primary language is not English, you should look at employing native speakers where possible.
2. Conducive environment and layout
The importance of the physical layout of the contact centre is often underestimated. Workstations should be aligned so that teams are together and can communicate instantly. Furniture should be functional yet comfortable. Attention needs to be paid to filtering out background noise, so that agents can hear clearly. Make sure that lighting is sufficient and that there is ample ventilation. Temperature control is also key.
All these elements combined will help create a conducive working environment.
3. IT – Hardware
In terms of hardware, the main elements required include a secure LAN (Local Area Network), an ACD (Automatic Call Distributor), and predictive diallers for outbound calling.
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4. IT – Software
In a recent survey, almost 20% of adults said that social media was their preferred form of direct communication. As a result, the ability to deal with, and respond quickly to, direct messages sent via Messenger, WhatsApp etc. is going to be a big contributor to the success of any contact centre.
When it comes to software, further key elements include IVR (Intelligent Voice Recognition), call recording systems, and of course, secure databases.