Finding and keeping talent in the calling arena is a difficult task, and expanding your calling territory and rep ranks can be an even greater challenge.
Call centers are faced with an uphill battle against the interruptive nature of robocalls that have struck American phones to the tune of 16 billion last year alone. All this means that call center representatives must be nimble in addressing the concerns of their clients and inventive in grabbing a lead’s attention in the first place.
Here is where great recruiting can make all the difference. The impact that a versatile and quick-thinking representative can make is astronomical. CSR’s voices are their only front-end tools they can use to convert a lead, so friendly and well-spoken reps are a must, but what about the intangibles?
Potential callers must be familiar with the nature of dialing options that call centers employ. There are a variety of options when picking up the phone: your agents might enjoy the efficiency of a predictive dialer, or they may be forced to hand dial if you haven’t finished onboarding all of the technology your startup office needs.
At any rate, good customer service representative will likely come in with some knowledge of how these systems work. They should also know the advantages of predictive dialing to discard busy or no-answer lines and route live voices to available reps over other automated systems. This is a good place to start in any interview once you enter the technical side of the discussion.
Interactive voice response (IVR)
Interactive voice response is essential to many call centers, and knowledge of it is something that can mark a standout candidate. This is because everyone has had experience with IVR systems, although we often fail to notice.
IVRs are the voice menus that often frustrate us when we place a call to a business or help center. These systems have come to be hated by all, but they are getting smarter, and exist as an essential resource for routing customer calls to the best possible problem solver on the other end of the line.
ACD: automatic call distributor
Automatic call distributors follow in the same vein as IVR and dialer solutions and is a logical next step. This capability routes calls to the best available agent.
Using smart technology, these can establish patterns in calling history to utilize IVR answers from the caller to direct a query or complaint to a rep with appropriate language skills or to the closest expert. These systems can also send calls directly to a representative who routinely handles that particular client’s needs.
When looking for new talent to fill out your desks it is important to find individuals who already possess a basic understanding of the work they will be doing. Finding potential reps who understand the concepts of ACD call center technology and blended agency is a great first step.
Finally, it is important to understand the role an agent is best suited for, or will need to perform. Some agents function primarily as outbound callers, while others deal only in inbound calls that carry complaints from clients. Many agents today function as a type of “super-agent” who needs experience in a broad variety of calling roles, but not all agents are capable of shifting approaches to manage these changing needs.