Call Center Services Week in Review: CROWDS, Retail Gazette, inContact, Forbes

The call center marketplace was bursting with news over the past week, and we have some of the highlights here.

To start, a recent industry news brief suggests that customer service may have met its match with a new app, CROWDS, from crowdsourcing application developer Conversocial. While the past may have had its fill of unsatisfying call center experiences and forced customers to deal with those experiences in private, says the Retail Gazette news site of the U.K., the future with CROWDS promises to pull customer support into the public eye. The app allows customers to use the Web-based application to inquire about a particular brand's product or service; it then redirects that message through Twitter (News - Alert) to find other customers who can help the people in need. It brings customers together to solve problems rather than placing the entire burden on brands themselves. It brings connectivity to a whole new level. Details are HERE.

Elsewhere, a new blog post shined a spotlight on the value of data. By now most everyone in the enterprise is starting to catch on to the fact that the data you capture from calls and other interactions with your clients has some real value beyond just asking if they’re happy or not.  Once it’s finely chopped and diced, such data can reveal insights that savvy marketers can use to advance their company and get some serious ROI, especially when it comes to hiring. “The data you are capturing during the quality management process is a gold mine of insight for your business. One very underutilized connection is recruiting,” inContact’s Gavin Gustafson wrote. “Measuring the right behaviors in your quality process is critical to leveraging the data in other departments. So, first let’s talk about some of the basic soft skills that are very commonly measured during the quality process. By comparing some of your soft skills scores to customer satisfaction scores, you can identify the most impactful soft skills to customer satisfaction.” Read what else he has to say on the matter HERE.

When it comes to careers, few look first toward being a call center agent, but if Forbes has anything to say about it that might change. Forbes recently took a look at how to get good customer service, and it starts with happy agents. The Forbes look at the call center makes plenty of sense on the surface; agents who are less stressed out and happier tend to stick around longer, and agents who stick around longer bring the benefits of experience to the operation, having a better handle on how to take care of problems and address issues. But by like token, it's clear that the call center is still one of the biggest problems companies face; the work is high-stress, and turnover so rapid that companies are often dealing with minimally-experienced agents for much of the time. Still, the whole story is worth a second look.

And there’s even more news where that came from, so to see all of the past week’s call center news, we have the details.