There are many current trends in today’s Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) organisations all with a key aim to optimise operations for both themselves and their clients, reducing expenditure whilst maintaining the high standards of service provided to both their clients and their client’s customers. What role does technology play in today’s leading BPO companies and more specifically what value does BPO Knowledge Management add when enhancing customer service?
The BPO Contact Centre Revolving Door
It is no secret that one of the biggest challenges faced by contact centres is the attrition of contact centre agents year in and year out. Annual turnover percentages can reach as high as 26% for full-time agents, presenting BPO organisations with a fundamental issue of excess wastage of company capital to thoroughly train agents, only for them to leave as soon as 6 months later.
It can take as long as up to 6 weeks to train agents to full competency requiring a high level of investment of both time and money. But what if training times could be halved and agents given the confidence and know-how to handle calls in a more highly efficient manner?
A well maintained and easily adoptable contact centre Knowledge Management system, can reduce agent training times by up to 40-50%. By empowering new recruits with the ability to perform a Natural Language Search against a central repository containing essential training materials and up to date client documentation, agents are able to learn the basics in up to half the time, whilst having the tools to answer customer queries much quicker and more accurately.
Contact Centre Processes and Their Risk of Error
Traditional processes that are pivotal to the everyday workings of a contact centre agent can present agents with a can of worms. In process driven contact centres processes can be very prone to error, for example those that exist in the format of complex excel spreadsheets or those that are buried amongst a wide number of different processes in multiple places.
BPO Knowledge Management excels in streamlining these processes into one central repository, allowing them to be quickly and easily maintained by authorised personnel. One such example of this streamlining is the incorporation of call scripts into the form of decision trees. By providing agents with an interactive and diagnostic tool, easy to solve customer queries can be answered much more quickly and with far fewer errors, allowing BPOs to demonstrate the high levels of customer service expected by their client organisations.
Keep It Multichannel
The BPO contact centre is evolving. Many of the top BPO organisations are realising the benefits of multichannel as a reaction to the present day communications landscape. The 21st Century customer has a choice of channels that regularly include; web self-service portals, agent chat, forums, social media, mobile and the traditional phone call.
Regardless of the channel, BPO organisations must ensure that there is a consistency to the answers that they provide to their client’s customers, making it imperative that the same knowledgebase and the same up to date information lies at the hub of all customer service operations.
With it’s flexible and comprehensive APIs, Universal Knowledge has the ability to ‘tap into’ each channel and provide knowledge where it matters the most – on the front-line.
Cost Cutting Conundrum
A great deal of emphasis is now being placed upon BPO contact centres to reduce expenditure where possible and with competition rife in the BPO industry, call centre managers must find new ways to maintain and increase profit margins whilst also enhancing customer service.
Whilst reductions in expenditure can be achieved through shorter training times greater profit margins are also attainable through the effective use of Knowledge Management. This benefit is observed especially when clients operate on a cost-per-call basis. Due to Knowledge Management dramatically reducing Average Handling Times(AHT) of customer calls, from inbound call answering to outbound cross-selling, agents are empowered with your company’s highly maintained and up to date information at the click of a button.
In addition to reducing AHTs, a well maintained BPO Knowledge Management tool is also fully capable of increasing First Call Resolution (FCR) rates by up to 20%. Improved rates of FCR not only ensures that call escalations are reduced, but also that customers are left highly satisfied with their experience.
Staying in the Loop
A common scenario within contact centres is the need for expensive communication systems or the pain staking task of manual email to agents or groups of agents. Whether they are updates to customer service policies or sales briefs, notifying agents has never been simpler than automatically pushing information at time intervals of your choice. Visualising these updates has never been easier with a real-time dynamic notifications module.
What’s more each agent’s received and read status is easily viewable through the production of full audit trails, allowing call centre managers to easily monitor who has seen these vital updates ensuring that everyone is kept in the loop.
Agents are also (if given the authorisation to do so) able to provide feedback on content if they deem it to be outdated, or whether it requires some tweaks to help preserve 100% accuracy of circulating knowledge.
In what is considered to be one of the most highly pressurised working environments, Knowledge Management is going a long way to helping BPO contact centres standardize and streamline their technology environments, making the vast amounts of multiple client’s information readily accessible when it matters.
Effectively capturing and sharing the tacit knowledge that walks out of the contact centre every year, ensures that these invaluable snippets of a short-lived career, are transferred to new agents. The accumulative benefits of Knowledge Management ensures that both your BPO contact centre and its agents, are the pick of the bunch amongst the great plethora of today’s competition.