We live in an on-demand world. Whether it’s content, food, or the answer to a burning question, we rely on our technology to deliver immediate results. But this convenience is a two-edged sword. Consumer expectations are higher, and failing to meet them can damage your brand relationship.
But creating the world’s best call centre for your credit union could be very difficult and expensive. In fact, for most credit unions, it’s not a realistic proposition. Finding the right solution, whether in-house or outsourced, is key.
But which choice is right for you? And how do you provide member convenience that also fits your credit union’s budget and growth plan?
There are five questions you should ask to help narrow down your options. The answers to these questions will help you improve your call centre satisfaction.
How To Ask These Questions
Call centres are key elements in meeting these new consumer demands. Expanded call centre service hours and availability meets this member need. Consequently, outsourced call centres allow credit unions the ability to offer personal services at a lower cost.
All these questions are ones that you should ask of yourself to better pinpoint your needs. However, these questions can also be directed toward potential vendors. As you compare answers, you may find a provider whose answers best match what you’re looking for.
1. What can you afford?
This is probably one of the most pressing questions to ask. Both for in-house and outsourced call centres, establishing a budget is step one.
In-house solutions require more employees, equipment, and training. Outsourced call centres handle these parts for you. Outsourcing is generally more affordable, as many credit unions only have to pay for the calls answered, rather than paying staff for being on-hand in-house.
If your credit union doesn’t want to put a large portion of the budget to its a call center, this may point you toward outsourcing.
2. Do you have the technology in place?
Having the right tech in place can make or break your call centre. This needs to be factored into your overall cost. Meeting member needs 24/7 means providing multiple service channels—and being able to seamlessly switch between them to fit the member’s preference.
Your infrastructure must also help your credit union set goals, track data, and manage personnel in your call centre to ensure it’s running effectively and efficiently.
If you don’t have these systems in place or think it’s not feasible, then outsourcing may be best for you.
3. What functions do you want covered?
While a call centre provides answers to member questions, that’s just the bare minimum. The call centre is increasingly a critical member interaction point where members can:
- Get online banking supportRecapture vehicle loans
- Enroll as a new member
- Apply for loans
- Ask high priority questions
- Inquire about new or existing products
- Dispute processes
- Report instances of fraud
- Provide general feedback
And that’s just the tip of the iceberg. Clearly, “call centre” isn’t a very accurate term. Especially in the age of COVID-19, it’s the first point of interaction for many members where agents not only answer the phone, but also chat with members, troubleshoot issues, or guide members through critical processes.
4. If you outsource, will you provide access to member data?
With outsourced call centre services, calls are answered in the credit union’s name. It’s up to your credit union to decide which inquiries you’re comfortable having a call centre handle. A trustworthy, reliable call centre will provide all the assurances you need.
Call centre agents with credit union member data do have a significant service advantage. They can greet members by name, follow scripts, and do everything that a regular credit agency can do.
If you’re not comfortable with providing member data, Members will get referred back to the credit union. This can often leave Members angry and frustrated. So, while you can blend your in-house and outsourced call centre operations, making the interaction seamless is better than restricting activity between the outsourced firm and your credit union.
5. What will you do in case of emergency?
In-house call centres don’t just staff for normal everyday situations. They must have contingency plans in place for disaster recovery scenarios. Using an outsourced call centre for after hours and overflow means you can use it to keep your business running in the event of a business continuity event, such as a natural disaster or a pandemic (such as COVID-19).
Of course, it’s always good to find out what your call centre will do in case of an emergency! You can be sure that they have a strong business continuity plan to keep your member service support rolling through any issues.
In a world of nearly infinite convenience, effective call centre strategies have become critical to credit union member service plans. But by asking and answering these five questions, your credit union can truly develop its own approach that works best for the credit union and its members.
Want to see how UPLevel answers these questions? Contact us to hear how we do things.
Or check out our services page to see if we’re in a position to help you.