Customer support during a lockdown: Are your teams prepared?
As India went into lockdown in late March 2020, call centers and BPOs shut down operations, leaving customers stranded. Callers and customers seeking information from brands were left on hold, as support was not readily available. The brands that managed to maintain customer support, gained an added edge. With customers, users, and shoppers spending more and more time online, they’re consistently reaching out for help. Are your support teams prepared?
Sustaining customer support during a lockdown
Not all heroes wear capes. Some wear headsets, and some click away concerns over keyboards. With offices shut and business operations impaired, brands that persevered to stay available for customers through this crisis became the ambassadors of the ‘customer-first’ ideology. In an ideal world, businesses create contingency plans to cater to any aspect of business that may be affected by economic loss or even natural events. But to navigate through a pandemic with impaired business operations required experience and agility.
Businesses take decades to build brand value among customers. The reason why customers stay loyal to a brand is their experience in engaging with it. And the paramount component of customer satisfaction comes from unified customer support. As businesses deal with economic shifts across industries, support teams grapple with the ‘people’ side of things. anxieties run high, and so do call volumes.
With reduced working personnel for brands, call/contact volume per agent increased significantly. Customers are understandably anxious and require support on the channels of their convenience. Reducing the average handle time for each interaction was the only way to be able to engage with the higher volume of customers seeking help.
Enabling agents with the right tools and accurate information at the right time helped in reducing turn-around time for our partners. With omnichannel availability of customer support, with intelligent chatbots and IVRs aiding agents, high contact volumes can be taken care of.
Virtual Call Centers: Customer Support in The New Normal
To adapt to the new normal, brick-and-mortar call centers need to evolve. A virtual call center is one in which the agents and support staff operate from multiple locations. Agents are equipped with a remote working platform that allows them to answer calls, and chat requests from the safety of their homes – rather than being situated in offices. Support teams are connected and work using virtual call center software.
Virtual Call Centers are beneficial to companies that provide support to customers in different time zones, and even those that wish to provide seamless customer support even during a lockdown.
A loyal customer who gets assistance from customer support when it requires the most, in turn, makes him the brand ambassador within his circle. A study from Microsoft’s State of Global Customer Service Report suggests that 58% of customers say that customer service is a very important factor that affects their choice of brand. To build a concrete community for customers, effective customer service these days is always righteous for a brand’s health.
Leap: The right tool for your customer support continuity plan
Customer support deals directly with customer satisfaction, which is the backbone of commercial success. Keeping the relationship between customers and the brand intact during times of crisis like this is very crucial. This is the reason why global leading brands continue to support their customers even from remote locations.
Leap, a remote working solution developed by Maxicus is specially designed for your customer support team to operate from any Internet enables space. With the potency of AI-technology and digitization, Leap will allow your agents to engage with customers with ease, while keeping customer experience unscathed. With its in-build features, Leap can re-create a BPO-like traditional workplace setup. Along with customer satisfaction, this work from home software also ensures data security and agent productivity.
This proprietary work-from-home solution enables the supervisors to monitor their team of agents communicating with customers. Measuring agent utilization and call center metrics like average handling time (AHT), first call resolution (FCR), active log in hours, average sales per agent are very easy and accurate with Leap. Agents logged in through Leap also get a smooth experience while answering queries or questions of customers, 24 hours a day. The only thing this solution requires to work is a stable internet connection. The platform also produces an agent productivity report with its analytics dashboard.
Customer Data Security
Data security is a major concern for companies when their employees work from a remote location. We at Maxicus, while developing our remote working solution Leap, put this concern as our top priority. Our AI-based solution makes sure that your customers’ data remains secure and safe while your business operations run flawlessly. With remote screen monitoring and barge-in features, customer data is kept secure with session-based policies and multi-factor authentication.
Leap comes bundled with an in-built knowledge base, learning, and quality assurance tool. These tools allow agents to look for and communicate the right information to customers promptly. Regular quality reports are produced with AI-based red flags and alerts. All training and on-boarding of agents are done virtually through online classrooms.
A silver lining to a dark cloud
Perhaps the most urgent thing that the COVID-19 pandemic has taught us is the need for digital contingencies and virtual solutions to business problems. The smarter approach to the current situation would be to learn from those around you to make your business offerings more resilient and sustainable. At a time when human contact has come down to its minimum, the gap between brands and their customers has never been larger.
Support your support teams to deliver to the best of their abilities. To co-create business continuity solutions, reach out to us here.