Contact centers are a part of some NL member firms and client businesses. In this guest blog based on a new white paper* available from IAT SmartDial, you will learn how to improve contact center productivity in four key areas: Compliance, Process, Routing and Resources.
Contact centers are always looking for new ways to effectively reach their customers. A good outbound dialer will address challenges beyond just automated dialing, such as providing technology compliant with industry laws and regulations, maximizing agent time, and utilizing resources more efficiently.
The most important dialing tips are those concerning compliance to regulations. Be sure to stay abreast of the changing guidelines, rules, and laws pertinent to your business and seek legal counsel where necessary.
- Seek legal counsel from an attorney before initiating any dialing processes. Set out a company policy that clearly defines your interpretations of the regulations governing your industry. Then refer back to that policy and follow it as you run your business. Laws and regulations are always changing, as is the technology you use, so continue to seek guidance from your legal counsel as these changes occur.
- Use dialing technology that offers compliance capabilities. Top-rated predictive dialer vendors understand your business and industry concerns. If you are reluctant to use an automated dialer due to legal concerns regarding laws such as the Telephone Consumer Protection Act (TCPA), rest assured the right dialer vendor is aware of these regulations and will offer solutions that address these compliance worries. Look for the following compliance-capable features in your potential dialing technology.
- Time of day controls—restrict phone calls based on an account’s area code or zip code.
- Cell phone scrubbing—skip any cell phone numbers that may be in your automated dialing lists.
- Duplicate call prevention—avoid calling the same account/household on different phone numbers multiple times per day.
- Manual dial options—retain the ability to manually dial a phone number if needed.
Once you have a solid compliance foundation, you can start to adapt your dialing processes to maximize productivity. A good dialer will boost productivity by taking care of all the mundane dialing tasks and leaving your agents free to do what they do best—talk to people. Choose a dialer that tracks & adjusts calling rate automatically. The best dialers track current call stats, agent habits, etc., and automatically adjust pacing throughout the day to provide your agents with a steady stream of live answers.
Another great tool for increasing agent productivity is skills-based routing. Decide how to categorize your calls, queues and agents. Then let the dialer match them up. Both agents and contacts benefit from connecting calls to the best-suited agent. Calls and agents can be matched based on a variety of factors such as language, agent tenure, location, department, etc.
Now that you’ve increased the productivity of your human resources, focus on ensuring you maximize your technology and/or hardware resources. Look for a dialer that uses a pooled resource environment rather than assigning a predetermined number of phone lines to each dialer task (e.g., predictive dialing, IVR messaging, inbound). In this set-up, every phone line is capable of switching between tasks as needed. As the dialer calculates how fast to dial, it can borrow resources from other tasks or assign “extra” outbound lines to another function until they are needed again.
IAT SmartDial®, an Enghouse Interactive company, has been perfecting the art of outbound dialing for more than a quarter century. If you would like to learn more about their dialing features, contact an IAT representative today at 1-800-574-8801 or via www.IATSmartDial.com.
*To receive a PDF of IAT SmartDial’s related white paper via email and read more productivity improving tips, click here.