A Day in the Life: How Customer Service Has Evolved With Easy VoIP Accessibility
The development of Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) has made providing a positive customer service experience easier than ever before for businesses of all sizes. VoIP communications are facilitated through the digital transmission of audio signals, which basically means that phone calls can now be transmitted through the internet--think of the affordability and practicality of popular VoIP applications such as Skype and Facetime, and then imagine what utilizing those benefits on a business scale could mean for your company.
A Day in the Life of a Customer Service Representative: Before VoIP Service
Rachel works for a small company that sells diet pills. Thanks to a great advertising campaign, her business is currently receiving hundreds of phone calls a day. Her customer service team is made up of five service representatives and one manager. In addition to answering incoming phone calls, her team is responsible for helping walk-in customers and completing basic store management tasks.
Before the recent advertising campaign, the diet pills that Rachel sells was relatively unheard of. Sales were steady, but Rachel’s team rarely had more more than two customers on the line and two in the store at a time. The store is not large by any means--in fact, when all six employees are working at the same time, it’s noticeably crowded. The owners are considering purchasing a second location, but the process is time consuming and expensive. In the meantime, product sales are suffering because the increase in call traffic has resulted in long wait times for both callers and walk in customers.
Rachel used to enjoy her job, but it has become extremely stressful for her lately. Her walk-in customers are often left waiting while she is on the phone, and they blame her for the inconvenience. While she’s trying to placate them, she can hear the phone ringing again in the background. If she misses the call, her manager becomes angry with her. If she takes it, the customers leave--and tell their friends not to come to the store because the service isterrible. Rachel is now considering quitting, but she needs the job, and she doesn’t want to leave her co-workers even more short-staffed.
The business that Rachel works for uses a traditional phone system. The system has only four lines at present. The owners are in the process of having more installed, but the phone company can’t send out an installation specialist for another week, and in the meantime some incoming callers are experiencing wait times as long as three hours. Rachel decides that enough is enough and does some research into alternative options. She discovers virtual calling with VoIP features and tells the business owners about it. They tell her that if she can find a company that offers a free trial, they will give it a try.
A Day in the Life of a Customer Service Representative: After VoIP Service
Rachel finds a telecom company that offers enterprise-grade VoIP service with free virtual PBX features. She calls the company and they offer her a month-long free service trial. The company representative asks her about the needs of her business, and she explains the problems that she has been encountering. Fifteen minutes later, her new virtual calling system is activated. Rachel is surprised to discover that the company doesn’t need to install any equipment to activate the service. They tell her that she and her coworkers can log on to their account online and add new lines and extensions whenever they need them.
Using the web management system, Rachel is able to customize a voice menu for incoming callers. Just by offering an automated list of store hours and product pricing, she is able to reduce her call burden by 25%. The remaining call burden is still staggering, but then she notices that call forwarding is one of the features offered by her telecom company. Rachel suggests to the business owners that they hire remote customer service employees. They agree, realising that they have recently been losing customers due to understaffing. This new solution means that the owners don’t have to take out a loan to open a second store front. Rachel uses the online calling control center to forward incoming customer service calls to the new employees, who all work from home. Rachel and her coworkers are now free to address the needs of walk-in customers, and the company’s reputation rapidly improves.
Businesses all over the world suffer from customer service challenges similar to Rachel’s. In most cases, the solution is as simple as making the transition to an upgraded virtual calling system with VoIP capabilities. Not only are such systems more streamlined and efficient, they enable more reliable call connections--and can even help businesses to expand internationally. If Rachel’s situation sounds familiar to you, it may be that your business too can benefit from VoIP technology.