8 Top Tips for Reducing Average Handling Time

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Top Tips for Reducing Average Handling Time

Holding a call can be irritating for anyone. One study shows that more than 30% of the customers that have to hold the call never return to the business. Thus, businesses have to manage their hold times. This management is necessary to improve customer service and to improve the business revenues. It is important to understand the requirements of call wait time before planning to reduce them.

Why do businesses require a call wait time?

The first reason that may require businesses to go for call wait time is the increased business queries on certain specific days. It includes festival seasons, certain sales days, etc. Thus, instead of hiring a new workforce, the businesses choose to go ahead with increased wait time. This increased call wait time has an adverse impact on the customers. More than 57% of the customers find wait time highly frustrating.

The second most obvious reason is the call escalations to solve customer’s queries or issues. It requires connecting the customer to the right person to provide the best solution to the issue. Sadly, more than 60% of customers believe that there should be some option in connecting to the right person to decrease the call wait time. Thus it takes no rocket science to understand a compelling need to reduce call hold time.

Best and Top Actionable Ways to Reduce Hold Time:

It is time to resolve the call center issues in the following ways:

    • Managing performance of agents:

Businesses can use real-time analytics and historic data to check the customer dealing of the agents. The data should be favorable for the first contact resolution rate and first response time. The average hold time for any agent should remain within the average limits. The other statistics like average call length, call arrival rate, and call abandonment rate can help manage the agents’ performance.

    • Introduce IVR for self-service:

The interactive voice response or IVR is great for giving freedom to the customers and bifurcating time-sensitive issues to the agents. An effective IVR guides the callers through predefined messages and prompts to a set of actions for best query solving. This technology is proven to calm the demanding customers.

    • Call routing:

Implementing skill-based call routing using any leading contact center software makes it easy for the business to connect the customers to the right agent in the first go. Thus, it significantly decreases the call wait time. The call routing can be based on the data entered by the customers in the IVR channel.

    • Offer customer callback:

Nobody wants to hold the line. The effective strategy to reduce call hold time is to offer a call back to the customer. Agents can provide an option to the customers to hold the line for an estimated time or to call back at a pre scheduled time. Thus, it adds personalization and credibility to customer interaction.

    • Introduce omnichannel communication:

Customers can reach businesses through messages, chat, and calls. Thus, there is a requirement to collaborate all these channels to ensure all services under one roof. The modern call center software allows options in omnichannel communication to the customers. This ensures that light issues are resolved without the need for calls.

    • Updated hold messages and music:

Businesses can replace the call rings with updated hold messages and music. This will not decrease the time directly but will look more satisfying to the customers. Companies can include the latest information or offers in this on-hold music to reduce call disconnections. It is proven to increase customer’s interest in more than 40% of cases.

    • Updating call scripts and knowledge base:

Updating the call scripts and knowledge base can help companies reduce callbacks and call transfers to multiple agents. It is further important to update the contact center’s database after changes are introduced in the processes. This upgrade saves time for agents and customers. Including the most relevant, up-to-date, and tested call scripts can significantly reduce call hold time.

    • Integrations with CRM:

Digitization in any business is incomplete without a seamless integration. Companies can integrate their CRM software with the call center software to generate quick reports. It ensures that business calls are effective, productive, and take less time. The call wait time reduces significantly when the managers can access the customer data and other information. It helps improve the overall customer experience.

Wrapping Up:

There is no second opinion for businesses to reduce call hold time. The best and top eight actionable ways to improve call waiting mentioned above work best for any call center. All you need is a vision and effective call center software that works hard to handle the critical call wait time. Businesses can unlock the potential of communication by keeping call waiting within manageable limits.

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