One thing is sure – no one enjoys spending time in a telephone queue. By focusing on call queue management, you can reduce the actual and perceived waiting time and improve the customer experience.
Do you also get annoyed by waiting in phone queues? You're not alone. Forbes writes that 57% of people feel that waiting a long time on the phone creates a negative customer experience. Call queue management means making sure your PBX queue times are at a healthy level. It is achieved through the use of good software, training your agents, and having guidelines for how to handle the PBX.
A PBX (Private Branch Exchange), also called a telephone switchboard, is a company's private communication network that allows the caller to navigate through various menu options and select extensions. A cloud PBX is a cloud-based variant where traditional telephony is integrated with IP telephony, CRM, and customer service, which leads to many advantages for your telephony and your queues.
Do you have the correct number of queues and agents?
Although everyone would prefer to skip waiting in line altogether, the most important thing is to be connected to the right person once you arrive. Therefore, you as a business must have the correct number of queues and agents to support them. To figure out how many you need, check the current pressure your PBX is in right now. If callers often have to wait in a queue for a long time, it's time to upgrade.
Your agents must be placed in the proper queues when a lot is going on. You need to review where the demand is constantly higher. If pressure is increased in one queue, you want to move agents to that queue to meet the higher demand.
IVR (voice response) for a better customer experience
An irritating moment for many is being forwarded to the wrong person that cannot solve their problem. By using interactive voice response (IVR) in the PBX, which gives the caller different options, you can eliminate the risk of callers being misconnected. It can be a voice that informs the caller of your opening hours or lets them know who can help, depending on the matter. You can even offer options that remove the need for talking to an agent and instead get the information directly.
With a voice response function, the agents can also use profiles and set if they are on vacation, in a meeting, or have left for the day. Callers then know when to try again if they aren't connected immediately.
Use the customer information you already have available
If your cloud PBX is integrated with your CRM, support will not only be more efficient and profitable – customers will also be delighted. As soon as an existing customer calls the agent who receives the call, the person's information is immediately retrieved. The agent can view all information about the customer, which leads to more efficient assistance. They can see the customer ID and social security number, what the customer has bought, and if there are any previously registered tickets.
By using the existing customer information, in your CRM or similar system, you can connect calls to the correct queue. For example, you can use language information to connect people to an agent that speaks their language. You may also have divided your customers into different groups; where some loyal customers have VIP status, meaning they should have queue priority or be assigned to a specific VIP queue.
Review statistics and data
A proactive, essential part is to analyze how your telephone queues performed during previous periods and learn from the statistics you can pull from your PBX. In the queue history, you can see which phone numbers have been calling, when the calls came in, and their duration. You also see how many calls were queued, how long the callers had to wait, and which agents they spoke to. Review which periods are the most intensive and where to distribute the most agents.
Also, remember to measure first-contact resolution, i.e., how good your contact center agents are at solving customer problems on the first try.
On-hook waiting – call your customers instead
At Telavox, we offer on-hook waiting or callback, which is an additional service with extended statistics and queuing functions. This means a person who calls and is placed in a queue can leave their phone number and be called instead when an agent becomes available. This is a valuable function today as many are short on time and don't have to sit and wait on the phone. Read more about how to activate the function and our additional service Call Center Pro.
Summary: Advantages of smart call queue management
With well-thought-out routines for call queue management, the direct effect is happier customers who get help faster. Agents can work more efficiently and have a smoother workday. In addition, this can, in turn, contribute to you being able to reduce time-to-resolution, that is, the time it takes for the agents to resolve a case.