Inbound call center job description – Consider these qualities when hiring

access_time 5 min
date_range 12.09.2022

Inbound call centers are vital in retaining existing customers and attracting new potential clientele. A successful inbound call center should hire employees with the right qualities and track the operation’s success with relevant KPIs.

Inbound call centers are key to a great customer experience

Inbound call centers provide better customer experiences for existing and potential customers. Additionally, inbound call centers also enable upselling for skilled agents.

A customer service team could be the only human contact a customer has with a company or organisation. In today’s omnichannel world, this calls for versatility from both agents and call centers.

There are several KPIs that inbound call centers monitor closely. For example, first response time, first resolution rate, average call abandonment rate, CSAT and average handle time are vital for every inbound call center.

KPIs are essential in ensuring customer satisfaction

An inbound call center should be a central hub for all customer communications. Done right, customers should be able to reach an agent with the right expertise in the right channel at the right time. With omnichannel software, you can manage all the relevant contact channels and distribute your workforce according to their needs and expertise.

The metrics that make inbound call centers successful are closely related to providing premium customer service with high efficiency. Most inbound call centers will struggle without the following five KPIs. With quality omnichannel software, you should be able to create easy-to-interpret reports on all of these:

  • Average call abandonment rate: You should evaluate the size or performance of your team if too many callers hang up without an agent picking up.
  • First response time: Being as accessible as possible is important for good customer service.
  • First resolution rate: Your team should be able to resolve most customer cases during the first contact, as customers don’t like to be transferred between agents.
  • Customer satisfaction score: You should try to aim for high CSAT ratings, since they are accurate indicators of customer retention.
  • Average handle time: The ratio between average talk time and average handle time can reveal problems in the wrap-up or resolution process.

These metrics don’t, however, prepare your team to handle situations where customers are often frustrated and in a hurry. Soft skills, such as empathy, are key in de-escalating difficult situations and keeping interactions positive.

To do well in the KPIs listed above, you need to have employees that possess the necessary qualities.

Important qualities for inbound call center agents and managers

Employees can make or break your inbound call center. Hiring the best possible customer service agents and call center managers ensures that your operation runs efficiently without compromises on customer experience.

There are several key qualities that make a good inbound call center agent or manager.

Emotional intelligence vital for inbound call center agents

To do well in an inbound call center agent’s job, the candidate should have:

  • Communication skills: The ability to communicate clearly both verbally and in writing is a necessity.
  • Patience, positivity and empathy: Customers often call when they are frustrated and want to be heard. Staying calm and de-escalating situations in a positive and empathetic manner should come naturally to an agent.
  • Adaptability: Even though there are scripts to follow, customer service often requires thinking outside the box. When the opportunity arises, your agents should be able to upsell or offer the customers new services that might benefit them.
  • Accountability: Metrics play a huge role in modern call centers. Your agents should be comfortable with monitoring and coaching.
  • Understanding of products and services: Troubleshooting requires profound knowledge of the products and services the company offers. It’s frustrating to explain your problem to an agent who doesn’t really know the product they represent.

 

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People and organisation skills make a good inbound call center manager

To do well in an inbound call center manager’s job, the candidate should have:

  • Analytical mindset with results orientation: Call centers are driven by metrics and the goals are often high. Managers should be motivated by setting targets and organising the operation so that the targets are hit.
  • People skills: As a call center manager, you constantly interpret, mediate and communicate the needs of both the agents and the management. The manager should be transparent about why and how the operation is run. When everyone understands each other’s needs, it’s easier for everyone to stay motivated.
  • Technological expertise: Call centers are increasingly tech-driven. Call center managers should ideally identify relevant technology trends to stay ahead in the competitive industry.
  • Knowledge of offering:  Call center managers need to know their campaigns and clients inside out. This way they can organise the operation optimally and ensure that each team member knows the campaigns and is able to give their best.
  • Calmness and prioritisation: Call center managers are often responsible for de-escalating complex situations. The better they organise their operation, the less they end up putting out fires. However, it’s inevitable that managers occasionally deal with a lot of pressure. Staying calm and being able to prioritise are thus vital skills for the job.

 

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Data-orientation and the right employees are a recipe for success

It’s vital for your inbound call center’s success to find the right agents and managers that have the qualities to take your operation to the next level. You also need to track the most relevant KPIs to constantly stay up to date on your operation’s performance.

This way your inbound call center can become the central hub for a customer experience that retains existing customers and attracts potential new clientele.