Prepare ahead of time to handle the holiday season challenge. Establish your processes or hire key employees at least two or three months before the peak period. The number of customer service requests can rise 264% on high traffic days, which requires your agents to devote more time to each customer.
Even the best employees may experience stress due to long hours and higher demands, which managers should be aware of. To cope with the holiday rush, many companies hire seasonal help part-time. To ensure high customer satisfaction, you must provide effective onboarding for your agents.
Onboarding reps should demonstrate the following skills at the end of the process:
understanding of company policies, knowledge of products and services, team workflow processes, customer service best practices, communication skills, and technical skills.
Many unexpected issues can arise during the holiday season, but you can prepare ahead and develop a cohesive strategy. To determine the volume of calls, you can expect, look back at your previous reporting schedules.
It is also possible to outsource other easily accomplished tasks with additional help. This way, you won’t lose sleep if the volume of inquiries increases. It is essential to train agents before the holidays to handle high call volumes.
No matter how well you plan and put everything in place, unforeseen circumstances may still arise, so you should always have a backup plan.
Following are some tips to maintain proper assistance during holidays or weekly off days
1. Make a definite plan for customer service
In many organizations, customer service teams play a central role in customer experience. They can make or break the impression people have of the organization and its services. For long-term success, you need a comprehensive customer service strategy.
Developing a vision and policy for customer service is a critical component. The vision should specify the type of service provided in terms of customer service, while the policies should outline how the department functions.
2. Assist your team in resolving issues as soon as possible
Customers dislike waiting too long on hold or discussing their concerns with too many people.
Customers should have the freedom to solve problems without constantly checking in with their supervisors, which means that customer support agents must be able to work independently. Particularly during the holiday season when employees are under extreme time constraints.
Prepare your team to handle most cases by ensuring they know. Set goals for your agents and support them as much as possible to achieve those goals.
Please provide them with the authority to resolve problems on their own once they have completed training and monitor their success rate. If a customer or agent doesn’t understand a question, consider implementing AI chatbots that can provide answers based on knowledge bases.
Not only should you provide your agents with training, but you should also train your customer support managers.
3. Teach agents how to deal with disgruntled customers
35% of people have lost their temper while interacting with customer service. Support can be complex, and it can be even more challenging during the holiday season or weekly off days.
A hurry will prevail among customers, and emotions will boil over. Your team must be ready to deal with some rude words from your buyers. When we need a positive attitude the most, it’s crucial.
There should be a policy regarding abuse in your business because sometimes, customers may insult your employees or verbally abuse them. During this point, your agents should be able to end the call or leave the chat.
During a holiday, your support agents have to deal with a great deal of work. While your employees are comfortable at home with family and friends, your customer service agents need to be on their toes to handle upset customers.
You might be able to make your customers feel more relaxed if your agents can work from home. Whenever necessary, provide food at the office or order food if they must be in the office.
Your agents will succeed if you give them the proper training and encourage them to use their discretion. That will enable them to feel empowered when providing customer service. A rewards program can also include a performance-based bonus or compensation.
4. Incorporate an IVR Service into your workflow
Customers highly regard companies that plan holidays. During the holiday season, your sales tend to suffer. Prospects will not look for excuses and appreciate the professionalism you display when planning their holidays.
Even during holiday seasons, IVR can be used to route calls and let you know about essential calls. Furthermore, you can direct your callers to the closest number to you. Always remember to close your sales.
When customers call your business, IVR can be an efficient way to route them. Through the system, they can bypass menu options they don’t need and enter their responses voice-activated or from a keypad to move quickly to where they need to be.
The holidays are not an easy time to provide exceptional customer service. You can improve customer service quality with the right tools integrated into your business and a few dedicated employees. Ensure that your customer service team has the right tools, tips, and techniques, and encourage them to put a little pep in their step as the holiday season approaches.
Looking to take some time off this holiday season but don’t know how to properly manage your HR department? Look no further! Our team at Beehive Software can help you get through the holidays with ease, while still maintaining proper employee records and compliance. Contact us today for a consultation and let us show you just how we can help!