Managing a successful call center is already difficult. On top of that, a virtual call center nonetheless? Well, if you’re thinking about either switching from a traditional call center to a virtual based call center or jump starting your own virtual call center business, there are five management keys that will ensure your success.
1. Good People
Hiring the right fit can be challenging at times. However, once you do find the right people for your business, everything else will fall into place. We interviewed Greg Wells, the successful owner and operator of AllCall, a BDC (business development center) call center that was forced to go virtual during the COVID-19 pandemic. He mentioned that having the right people working for you can make all the difference.
2. Good Technology
A call center depends upon its technology. If the internet network is down, they are unable to make calls to their customers. Wells and his team are avid users of Volie, a multi-channel web-based application that allows its users to effectively and efficiently manage their phone and email campaigns, which includes dialing outbound calls and serving up inbound calls to agents. Volie is also crucial when it comes to monitoring call production. It allows the customer to monitor both call quality through voice recordings and call quantity through its expansive reporting dashboard. Both are valuable tools to manage the overall efficiency of the call center.
3. The Right Clients
Having the right fit clients are just as important as having an outstanding staff. Dealer-client partners need to be able to build a relationship with the call center. Relinquishing their customers to the call center requires trust. Trust that must go both ways. Finding the right dealer-client partners is a must in order to have a successful call center, whether you choose to go virtual or not.
4. Management Staff
If you have excellent agents, you need an exceptional managerial staff to maintain the level of consistency throughout the call center. These individuals will ensure that the agents are following the established procedures and are not freestyling their phone calls. Your management staff also needs to be able to join the ranks of the agents when need be. They shouldn’t be afraid to work leads in order to keep your company alive -- much like AllCall’s managerial staff was required to do during the COVID-19 pandemic. These individuals will often possess the tenacity and dedication to outwork any agent if they are required to do so.
5. A Sense of Community
Once you have the right agents and staff members, it is time to make your call center a community. Family first has been at the forefront of AllCall’s philosophy, which is one of the primary attributes to their success. Establish a relationship with each of your employees. Create a sense of community by having a daily huddle or meeting where you discuss the agenda for that day. Assign each team member a task or group of tasks, check in with them periodically to ensure that they are reaching their goal or tackling their assigned task to the best of their ability. Wells is also an avid reader and loves to share his love of reading with his employees. They read several books together throughout the year and meet to discuss these books, almost like a book club.
One book in particular, When Fish Fly: Lessons for Creating a Vital and Energized Workplace from the World Famous Pike Place Fish Market, by John Yokoyama and Joseph Michelli, is the theme for AllCall. Greg requires all new employees to read the book prior to their first day of work. He uses this theme for when they do group presentations. There are “Fish” groups that will present on a topic to the whole staff a few times a year. Sometimes these groups are people that wouldn’t normally hang out with each other as they work different shifts throughout the day or they are in different departments such as service or sales. Fostering a sense of trust and allowing your employees to build relationships with each other can propel the productivity of your call center, because people love coming to work if they are around like-minded friendly individuals. Once you tap into that, you will be unstoppable.