ICMI research shows 86 percent of consumers want the freedom to choose their favorite channel to connect with businesses -- and their satisfaction levels rise when they're given that choice.
To give your multichannel efforts the best chance for success, start with the agents who know you and your business the best. Put processes into place and take advantage of technology tools to transform these veterans into multichannel powerhouses.
Here are some tips to get you there:
1. Start by assigning agents to specific channels -- don't make them jump around among multiple channels at first. 2. Remember: people are going to have strengths and weaknesses. Someone who's great at voice communications, for example, may also do Chat well -- but might struggle with social or email communications. 3. Subject matter expertise is important. You'll want to route emails and alerts to the agents best equipped to respond -- so set up rules for who should respond to what. You'll need technology tools to help you do this routing efficiently. 4. Because social media is a public channel, you'll want your top agents here. Identify which of your best-performing customer care agents are socially savvy and know your brand, products, and policies inside and out. 5. Adjust assignments as you learn who excels at what. Now you're gaining efficiency and boosting contact center performance. 6. Eventually, you'll identify a few agents who do well in multiple channels. For those agents, limit time in a channel to a few hours, then shift to another channel during the course of the day -- it combats monotony and keeps agents fresh for your customers or prospects. 7. Don't ask your new team to keep every strategy, policy and issue in their heads. Instead, create a playbook with guidelines and rules of engagement for your team to follow -- and be ready to evolve this as you go. 8. Track your team's progress! Set performance benchmarks, collect data, and compare agent productivity to increase efficiency and identify areas for process improvement.
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