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If you are looking for a way to improve your client call handling efficiency, you need to consider adding call disposition codes into your process.
What is Call Disposition?
Call disposition is a way for businesses to further categorize the type of calls they receive after the standard business reporting codes. In this article, we’ll explain how call disposition works in practice, why it’s a great way to improve efficiency, and how to implement it in your business.
How Does Call Disposition Work in a Real-Life Situation?
Suppose you are handling large volumes of calls into your business. You will already have a standard reporting method which breaks down the nature of the calls into very broad categories like sales/customer service/accounts/other.
The problem with this kind of broad classification is that it doesn’t give you much information beyond that.
Call disposition is a second line of classification or data that enables you to further categorize calls into more detailed categories with call tags. So imagine your call center operator receives a call from a customer, and she pushes 1 for customer service — this is your basic reporting, already built into your answering process. Then your operator takes the call and discovers that it’s a client whose subscription has lapsed and wants to renew. This is not a sales call, as it is not a new lead — it’s an existing customer. It should be classified as a reactivation, which is important data. Call disposition will enable your operator to log the call with a contact record and assign it a code that effectively classifies it as a reactivation.
If you receive 50 reactivation calls a month, this is vital information that your marketing team should know about. If this data is getting lost in basic reporting, your team cannot act on it, and the opportunity will be lost.
What are the Real Benefits of Call Disposition?
We’ve looked at how call disposition might look in real life, so now, let’s talk about how this addition to your call handling process can benefit you and your business.
Collect Valuable Information
As we touched on in the first part of this article, call disposition can be used to collect valuable data about your customers, their habits and motivations, which kinds of calls are coming in, and linked to that, how much of your agents’ time is being used on average, on each call type. This is all data you can use as actionable insights to improve your workflow efficiency and leverage your marketing strategies.
Increase Sales Team Efficiency
There is no better tool for lead conversion than call disposition, as it offers levels of detail to your sales team so that they can more effectively address the various types of “sales” calls that come through. These calls can be very different, and if you have a detailed report, your sales team can delegate the best person to handle them, not on an ad hoc basis but as part of a streamlined process. You can also more accurately predict and direct the outcome of calls if they are handed over to the right person or department.
Increased Customer Engagement
When you add a call disposition process, you have a better opportunity to engage with your customers correctly. Your follow-up process also becomes smoother, and from a brand perspective, you look more professional. Customers respond to that. This results in increased engagement and satisfied customers, which improves profits at the end of the line.
When you have satisfied customers spreading the word about their great experiences, you get an increase in turnover. This translates into an increased return on investment (ROI). The thorough and accurate reporting alone increases ROI. As mentioned earlier, this can be leveraged to improve productivity.
Sales Call Disposition Best Practices
Once you have decided to include call disposition in your call handling process, you may wonder, what’s the next step? How do I make it happen? Here are some suggestions for best practices in call disposition to make it work for you.
Record Your Calls
This is an important step. There are several reasons why you should record your calls:
- It allows you to perform quality assurance exercises by listening to a sample of calls to ensure they are being handled correctly by your operators.
- You can identify instances where the call went wrong and use it to improve your operator performance by offering tips or a script which helps the operator to navigate tricky or complex calls.
- You can cover yourself and your operators legally by being able to produce recorded evidence in the event of a dispute.
Take Notes for Each Call
Ensure that your operators take notes for each call. This will help with follow-ups or successive calls from the same customer. If there are notes on a specific client call log, then it will be less time-consuming for both the operator and the client if there are notes detailing the previous call. Your operator will then be able to pick up from where the last call left off without making the client repeat the previous steps over again. This kind of call handling solution will keep a customer, even if the outcome is not favorable in the short term. Nobody likes having to repeat the same thing repeatedly to different people without making any progress.
Use Call Disposition Codes/Tags
Like any social or marketing research exercise, in which the data collectors categorize responses and input them as codes, you should assign call disposition codes or tags to your calls. You can preselect a number of call types you have already identified and include an “other” selection, which can be refined over time. This is done by assessing the kinds of calls within the “other” category to identify any trend, and then assigning that trend its own code. This is an iterative process that you can adjust to make it more effective as your processes become more streamlined.
Have Clear Action Items After Each Call
There is no point in any of this if you do not act on the information you are receiving. You must have a plan of action to work off to follow through with your call disposition tags. Your system should funnel calls or enquiry logs to the most appropriate people. They must also have a deadline by which to action any responses or assistance. Your process should be thought through from start to finish, with a clear plan for what must be done and who will do it.
Call disposition is undoubtedly a useful tool if you are prepared to do the legwork and implement it properly. It can also serve your business in many ways that are not directly related to call handling, as mentioned earlier in the article. Data is the currency of today, and if you can generate comprehensive data on your client interactions, you are already gaining your business an added advantage.
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