Tricks of the Call Centre

We’ve been very busy of late in the call centre. Almost at the end of the financial year so the company is trying to make as much money as possible. Trouble is there are not enough agents to handle the call volume. We are frequently getting call queues of double figures. The company gets fined if there are any abandoned calls, which there frequently are as customers do not want to wait 20 minutes or more to speak to someone. So what does the company do? Simple. They get all the other departments to answer the calls as well. As long as the call is answered it won’t be abandoned. So customers are going through to the wrong people and are then being transferred internally. The customer then has wait in another queue. But it stops the amount of abandoned calls and prevents the company getting fined. Simple.

It’s annoying for the customer and it’s sheer hell for those of taking the calls. We get extremely annoyed answering call after call that should be for another department. Of course the customers have a go at us. They’ve been waiting in a queue and then they’re told they’re being transferred. It’s not good for anyone, but it saves the company getting fined.

So next time you’re in a call queue, just bear in mind that no matter what options you have pressed, you may well get transferred when the call is answered. Don’t take it out on the agent. The agent has had their share of having to transfer calls and they’re as annoyed, if not more so, than you.

And I Haven’t Even Won The Lottery Yet!

What a great morning. It was like christmas for the next five years had all arrived at once. My dreams had come true. Shangrila was real. Heaven was on Earth. Paradise was found. Get the picture?

And the reason for this sudden onset of ecstasy? This all too brief moment of bliss. This amazing turn of events. This moment of wonderous rapture…

We have many phone lines coming into the company. I think they put a different phone number on every set of mailings they send out. Then there’s the normal number that is on the policy documents and on the internet. Anyway, several of these lines weren’t working correctly, including the main company phone number. It meant that people phoning us were coming through but we couldn’t hear them and they couldn’t hear us. After several ‘hello’s’ we ended the calls. There was nothing else we could do.

So for most of the morning I got the opportunity to cut people off. And I hadn’t even won the lottery! Fantastic! It was great! I loved it! I wish it happened every day.

It didn’t last long.

This afternoon we were back to normal. In more ways than one. Here’s two examples of conversations with customers. The first is a call I had, and the second is a colleagues.

1)
‘Hello. You’re through to…at…Could I take your name please?’

‘This is…’

‘And what’s your address Mr…?’

‘My address is…’

‘How can I help you today Mr…?’

‘Could you send me an enquiry pack?’

‘No problem. I’ll get that in the post. You’ll receive it in a few days time.’

‘Do you want my address?’

‘You’ve just given it to me.’

2)
‘Hello. You’re through to…at…Could I take your name please?’

‘No. It’s not relevant. I just want an enquiry pack.’

‘No problem. I’ll get that in the post for you, and you’ll receive it in a few days time.’

‘Thanks. Bye.’

‘Before you go can I just ask where you’d like me to send it to? I will need your address and your name, otherwise you won’t receive it.’

‘Oh.’

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