9 Tips to lessen a Philippine call center's handle time

OABPO Blog Team Published on May 8, 2014

Philippine-call-center
Average handle time (AHT) is a common and important metric in almost every Philippine call center because it can determine how efficient the agents are in solving problems and answering queries over the phone. While having a short AHT doesn t necessarily translate to successful resolutions, call centers try to keep the average low so that they can accommodate more callers and value the customers’ time.

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Here are some ways call centers can lessen AHT:

1.   Promote self-service options

Self-service options such as FAQ pages and customer service apps could answer general questions. Many customer concerns can be answered through these options, not only reducing handle time but also the overall call volume.

2.   Include basic information in the IVR

Agents wouldn’t have to explain rules to every customer if the interactive voice response (IVR) lets the customers know about basic policies before they reach a live representative.

3.   Have readily available resources and communication channels

With a unified profile database, agent resource, and company-wide chat program, the phone representative wouldn’t have to pause to search for answers or ask teammates for assistance.

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4.   Speak concisely

It would be wise to hire agents who can naturally converse concisely to avoid lengthening calls with unnecessary chitchats. Alternatively, train current teams to get their point across in a brief but clear way.

5.   Avoid dead air

The delaying silence may be caused by faulty equipment or the agent’s manner of talking. To ensure continuity, regularly check the functionality of all technologies and provide representatives with trainings and easily accessible aids.

6.   Use comprehensible marketing materials

Many consumers contact customer care for clarifications about ads, product descriptions, or service policies. If these materials are already clear to them, they would less likely ask the brand about vague product information.

7.   Have ready answers to frequently asked questions

Agents should be ready to answer frequently asked questions. Better yet, use tips 1 and 6 to lessen repetitive queries.

8.   Let the same agent handle call-backs and follow-ups

If customers make a follow-up call, it’s advisable if the same agent they transacted with in the earlier call will also be the one who’ll handle the subsequent call. This way, customers wouldn t have to repeat the same information to the new representative.

9.   Lessen ACW

ACW or after-call work is commonly part of the AHT. If the agents can finish all the necessary processes (profile update, form fill-up, etc.) before the call ends, then the handle duration can easily be reduced.

There are many other ways to reduce a call center’s average handle time. Before applying any of these pointers, you must remember to prioritize quality over this numerical metric. Agents should ensure that issues are resolved instead of rushed.
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