Predictive Dialers Can Improve Call Center KPIs
Key performance indicators, or KPIs, are a familiar measurement of workforce efficiency and effectiveness among call center staff. And, for most, time is of the essence. Agents are typically evaluated based on metrics related to time-driven efficiency, such as calls per hour, handle time, and the amount of time actually spent engaged in specific activities, such as the percentage of an agent’s time spent talking vs. idle.
Whether your call center’s objectives are measured by sales completed, appointments set, questions answered or issues resolved, most managers gauge agent performance on an even more granular level – the time it takes to achieve these goals. Given that time is so closely tied to contact center costs, these are no arbitrary measurements.
One of the ways contact center managers can improve KPIs – and ultimately the overall performance of the call center – is by employing predictive dialer technology designed to help your agents resolve more calls in less time.
Predictive dialers queue outbound calls so your agents don’t have to
A predictive dialer is a solution for outbound calling that automatically dials numbers from a list and relies on a set of metrics to anticipate when the next live agent will be available. Factors such as answering machines, busy signals, no-answers, and disconnected numbers are all taken into consideration so that agents can focus on customer engagement.
The average time it takes to manually dial a number and wait for an answer is roughly 30 seconds. This may not seem like much, but consider that only about one in every three or four calls is usually answered by a live person. A few seconds spent dialing and waiting on each call can easily stretch into a significant percentage of an agent’s day.
Eliminating manual dialing increases agent talk time
The industry average for call handle time in outbound campaigns is about 55-60% of an agent’s time, or 33-40 minutes in an hour. With a predictive dialer performing the tasks of dialing phone numbers and waiting for answers, agents can spend a greater percentage of their time actually engaged with contacts. For example, here are a few specific ways predictive dialers can impact KPIs:
- Calls handled/calls per hour. The number of callers an agent actually connects within the span of an hour is somewhat dependent on the type of call agents are making. However, agents who have calls routed to them vs. manually dialing each number can expect to pick up significantly more interactions.
- Resolutions/conversions. Increasing the number of calls an agent picks up in an hour will proportionately impact conversions. The more engaged time an agent has with contacts, the greater the number of opportunities he or she has to close a sale.
- Cost per interaction. One of the most significant operational costs accrued by contact centers is agent time. By maximizing efficiency and increasing the amount of engaged time an agent has, the cost per call decreases – whereas the amount of revenue generated per hour increases.
- Customer satisfaction. It’s easy to overlook the customer’s perspective when focusing on the bottom-line metrics frequently associated with KPIs; however, this is one of the most critical measures of overall contact center success. How your customer feels about your brand can be directly affected by dropped calls, unavailable agents, and even simply receiving a call at an inconvenient time. Predictive dialers can help agents reach customers at a time when they are more receptive to being contacted, leading to a greater likelihood that they will be open to closing a sale or discussing an opportunity.
Take advantage of premium dialer routes for even higher answer rates
A common concern when using dialers is the fact that many carriers will direct dialer traffic to lower quality routes because of the load that high-volume, short-duration calls place on their network, or they will attach additional charges to dialer calls. Businesses can avoid concerns about degraded dialer call quality by choosing a service that delivers premium dialer routes at an affordable cost.
Predictive dialers have been in use for over 30 years, and current innovations in predictive dialer software and technology have made them the mainstay of the modern contact center. They are an invaluable tool to help ensure your agents can spend more time engaging with contacts and less time manually making a connection. Predictive dialers can not only lead to higher resolution rates and sales, but they also help create a more dynamic, faster-paced environment that facilitates agent engagement and overall workplace satisfaction.
Find out more about predictive dialers and how they can benefit your outbound calling strategy with our Contact Center Solutions.