Opening any business is risky, and can be overwhelming if you have never done it before. Opening your call center can be tricky if you don’t know the ins and outs of the industry. Finding all the information you need is the trickiest part. Can you afford to miss any steps or components? A call center consultant can help you throughout the process and come up with a detailed game plan, or better said, a call center consulting plan.
A basic call center consulting plan should take in consideration the following:
- The purpose or goal of your call center.
- The number of employees needed based on forecasting.
- Training for new hires and existing employees.
- Logistics and location
- Project implementation strategies
- Technology or software solutions that your call center will need
- Best practices to improve Employee Performance
- Overview of the customer journey
- Completion Timeline
In this article, we will get into the basics of each bullet point, and find out what your call center consulting plan should look like in 2021.
The purpose or goal of your call center
The first step to opening a new call center is to define its purpose: What’s your company’s focus and who will be your target market? Carefully answering these questions will enable you to offer the services your identified customers will need. Then you can begin the planning process. If you are expanding your company and opening a new call center, this is the time to reassess your business plan to ensure you are targeting the right clients. A call center consultant can help you identify current holes in the market and current unmet needs, and find a way to incorporate these into your business plan – in other words, create your call center consulting plan.
The number of employees needed
Never guess how many employees you will need. Instead, determine how many clients and billable hours you will need to be successful. This can best be done with the help of a business consultant. This process entails examining your overall budget. Once you know how much money you need to make, then you can accurately determine how many employees you need to hire. This process will keep you from both overhiring and underhiring.
Training for new hires and existing employees
This step will require you to think outside the box. Until your call center is complete and ready for you to move in, you will need to interview and train off-site. This will require juggling many moving pieces. The average call center takes six months to complete and open. The call center services you intend to offer will determine the amount and type of training you will need to host. Your call center consultant can help you to identify and meet these needs.
Logistics and Location
Where you locate your call center is critical. Your location should be central to the majority of your employees. The easier you make it for people to get to work, the more likely they are to come – and be on time. Think of things such as ease of access to public transportation, access to main roads and places to eat lunch. Don’t skimp on parking! You will want to ensure there is enough parking for each employee at your call center.
Project implementation strategies
Every successful project needs an implementation strategy. Again, this is where your consultant will be able to help you. Call center consultants understand the need to develop a robust implementation design as well as a strong project outline. They will be your strongest asset because they have experience in managing large projects in several different settings.
Technology or software solutions that your call center will need
Technology is pivotal to running a thriving call center, and there are so many decisions to make. Once you know the scope of your services, you can create a list of the technology you will need to purchase. Some things to consider are what channels will your customers use, how will you manage the information you have, and how will you route your calls. All call centers need the following to be successful: agent desktop, call routing, predictive dialer, cloud solutions, workforce management and optimization software, call recording, headsets, multichannel communications, and customer relationship management systems.
Without these tools of the trade, your call center will falter. A consulting company can help you choose the right equipment for your call center.
Best practices to improve employee performance
Building your call center employee culture starts on day one – before you hire staff or complete your building. Corporate culture is created from the top down. Spend time early on to engage your management staff. Ensure that they are on the same page as your program design, are enthusiastic and ready to set the example for high-quality customer service. Setting the right tone and expectations early will lead to employees who are prepared to engage your customers and create a positive customer experience.
An overview of the customer’s journey
You want your customers to have a positive journey from beginning to end. Make sure you have enough adequately trained staff, as well as a top-notch management team. For an excellent customer journey, make sure each call is answered promptly and in a professional manner. From there, understanding what customers need and expertly meeting their needs will ensure a happy customer journey.
Call Center Completion Timeline
On average, opening a call center takes a minimum of six months from start to become operable. Some companies have completed this task in as little as three months, but that does not leave room for surprises or challenges. A good plan is to give yourself two years: Take 18 months for planning, researching and hiring, and then six months for training before the grand opening.
Simple steps and proper planning will ensure a successful and prosperous call center.
These are some of the most important aspects to consider when building a call center consulting plan.
Let us help you with your call center consulting plan
Contact our team at Call Center Power. We can help you make informed decisions and find services best suited for your company needs.
Whether large or small, your contact center is the heartbeat of your company’s customer experience and a critical component to your brand.
Our company has over 50 years of extensive experience across many industry verticals. This experience enables us to quickly evaluate your company’s current capabilities and systems and develop a detailed plan and course of action to get your business and customer experience running optimally in record time.