Over the past two decades many businesses around the world have opted to use call centres as their primary way of communicating with clients over the phone. From insurance companies to banks and marketing businesses, the call centre has made inroads into many sectors of the business world – but are they effective?
Why Are Call Centres So Popular?
The trend for using call centres began in developed markets like the US and Britain, where call centres in countries such as India were outsourced to cut operating costs. Because wages are lower in India, which has an educated workforce, the savings involved in outsourcing to call centres helped large corporations to boost their profits.
In South Africa the trend toward using call centres began in the late 1990s. We have all experienced the local call centres which service some of the country’s biggest corporations, especially when it comes to their customer service divisions.
Call Centres and Customer Experience
While outsourcing to a call centre may make sense for a large business, the customer experience is not always totally positive when dealing with call centre agents.
Unlike members of permanent staff who are involved in the running of the business on a daily basis, call centre staff are usually trained to answer basic questions and attend to issues like payments and account enquiries. This lack of in-depth knowledge as well as the time wasted while callers are put on hold are two factors that frustrate customers when they deal with a call centre.
The Benefits of Using Company Staff
At a time when call centres are so common, so is the frustration of customers who long for the days when they could call the office directly and have their problem solved efficiently. As a business owner you can gain customer loyalty and new business by training your existing staff, who are knowledgeable about the ins and outs of the business, to deal with enquiries directly.
With increased customer satisfaction, you’ll soon gain a reputation for looking after your clients which will translate into a growing customer base in the long term.