After you have outlined your initial ideas for creating the best customer and agent experience, it's time to delve into the specifics.
While this task may seem challenging, remember to stay determined. We will guide you through the process step-by-step, and with practice, it will become much easier.
Find a quiet place and gather the material you created in the first session. Today's task is to break down the process from its broad, first-level description to a highly detailed, step-by-step journey through your phone system. The objective is to reach the third level, where every aspect is thoroughly documented (although it's common to have a second-level description initially).
Before looking at the example we designed in the previous section, let's focus on a simple scenario. We will explore the connection or non-connection of an incoming call to an agent. How do we achieve this?
A call reaches your hotline
A customer is calling your hotline, but what exactly happens here? Is the caller immediately connected to an agent, or does your telephone system involve additional processes that the customer may not be aware of? Consider the following scenario:
The platform checks your service's opening hours. To avoid forwarding calls to a call queue when your representatives are unavailable, it's essential to determine what happens when your service is closed and when it is open.
- Incoming call after hours: If a call occurs outside of office hours, it should be redirected to an announcement informing the customer that the service is closed. Then the call ends.
- Incoming call within office hours: Calls that reach your hotline during office hours should be forwarded to the call queue, where customers wait until an agent is available to assist them.
Caller reaches the queue
Now lets assume that your service is open and the caller will be forwarded to a call queue. What possibilities do we have?
In the best-case scenario, the call directly connects to an available agent. However, if no representatives are available, there are various options to consider (which we will discuss in the next article). For now, let's explore a simple option: the caller joins the queue and waits behind other callers, listening to music.
- If no agent is available within 3 minutes: In the unfortunate event that no agent becomes available within three minutes, the caller is removed from the queue. So, what should happen in this case?
Ending a call that was not connected to an agent
The caller has now been taken out of the queue as no agent became available in time. Although this outcome is not desirable, it's crucial to be prepared for such situations. Instead of abruptly ending the call in such case, consider the following suggestion:
- Apologize to the customer and offer alternative options, such as providing an email address or requesting a callback.
To summarize, this chapter introduced a simple flow with three key options:
- Call reaches hotline: Route to after-hour prompt or call queue.
- Call reaches the queue: Connect to an available agent or handle non-availability.
- Ending a call not connected to an agent: Offer apologies and alternative options.
You can also prepare your flow in a table, whatever works best for you! Here's the described flow:
|Step 1||Step 2||Step 3|
|Call reaches hotline after business hours||Call is ended after a friendly prompt was played|
|Call reaches hotline within business hours||It is forwarded to the queue and directly connected to an available representative|
|Non of your representatives is available. Customer hears music||After three minutes the call ends, the customer is offered an alternative solution before the call ends|
In the next section, we will look at a much more complex scenario that will probably reflect your call flow more realistically. But be warned, it's getting more difficult. If you feel ready, you can go to the next section here.