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What is the Purpose of a Call Flow in a Contact Center?

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March 13, 2020
By: LiveVox

A Call Flow is Your Customer Service Road Map 

As customer service professionals we all know that first impressions are vitally important. But what we may not all realize is just how little time we actually have to make a good one. According to psychological research, we form opinions within the first seven seconds of meeting new people and encountering new situations. 

In less than the time it takes to answer a text message, we can form a solid impression of who a person or brand is. Even more surprising, some research suggests a tenth of a second is all it takes to get a sense for traits like trustworthiness and reliability.

That means the proverbial “first impressions” clock is always ticking — and this is where an intelligently designed call flow can swoop in to help you get off on the right foot with customers. 

When a customer contacts your brand they want answers fast. Mere seconds isn’t enough time to talk about your history, address service blunders, or convey the full magnitude of your brand’s wonders. When the pressure is on to get to a resolution fast, your agents don’t have the luxury of time to address misconceptions. 

So what’s one thing you can do to make a better first impression with customers? Create a seamless, clear, and intuitive call flow. 

What is a Call Flow? 

Well, technically speaking call flows can refer to two different, equally important things:

  • The conversational flow of your agent’s script.
  • The way a call is routed within your system. 

To begin, let’s tackle #1. 

The conversation flow will vary depending on the reason for each call. A customer who contacts your brand to reschedule an appointment is not going to have the same interaction as the person who contacts you because they need to report a suspicious charge on their account or would like to increase their credit line. 

To ensure you’re tailoring each interaction to the issue at hand while also streamlining your scripting process, follow these handy tips. 

Setup an Intelligent IVR – First and foremost, utilize an IVR to pre-screen customers and knock out “low” hanging fruit such as identification, the number they’re calling from in the event of a disconnection, and the reason for their call. All of the above will help to frontload “administrative” work for your agents and make them all the more speedy in handling calls. Your customers will get what they want faster, and your agents will be able to get to the root of issues quicker without digging for the information.  

It’s a win-win for all involved, really. 

And as far as script structure is concerned, consider these basics:

  • Friendly greetings. Hello valued customer, great to hear from you! 
  • Authentication. Would you mind verifying your address for me to ensure we’ve got the most recent information on file?
  • Identify the Issue. I understand you’re calling about [X].
  • Be Understanding. I’m sorry to hear you’re having trouble with that. 
  • Get to troubleshooting. Let’s see how I can help.
  • Recap. Ok, valued customer, today we updated your address and created a claim for your stolen credit card.
  • Branding/Upsrving. Did you know that you can manage your claim via SMS? By opting in to receive text messages from us you can skip the line in the future. Would you like to receive SMS notifications from us going forward?  

Now for the tricky part — configuring intuitive call routing. 

What Does an Ideal Call Flow Look Like? 

There’s a lot of information out there advising on how to create the perfect call flow. But few sources really stop to consider the fact that in an omnichannel ecosystem where customers enter your business through any number of digital channels, call flows are no longer limited to just voice calls. 

Remember a successful call flow should be a road map for what your customer experiences. With so many entry points in an omnichannel environment, a better way to think about structuring flows may be to think of call routing as the first step in defining your customer journey. 

From this perspective, you’re better positioned to integrate your phone system with digital channels.  

How Do You Set Up an Omnichannel Call Flow?

Very few brands actually have omnichannel interactions with their customers today. That is because the approach to adding channels has been piecemeal and integration with existing systems is a challenge. As a result, the digital aspects of the customer journey are not added properly and exist in siloes or stacks, as shown in the hypothetical call flow below on the left.  

In a true omnichannel call flow, all channels and data are unified regardless of which channel the customer entered your business through, as outlined in the hypothetical call flow on the right. 

Want to see an ideal omnichannel call flow? Check out our latest infographic

Your customer interactions reflect your technology stack. If your channels are siloed your customer experience will mirror that fracture.

To achieve a true omnichannel call flow, integrate information across disparate systems with the goal of creating a single view of your customers and expand call flow logic beyond just voice calls. 

Doing so turns that old, tired roadmap into a freeway map that intersects and reroutes across voice, SMS, webchat, and email so that you can get your customers where they want to go faster.  

What makes a better impression than that? 

About LiveVox

LiveVox is a leading provider of enterprise cloud contact center solutions, managing more than 14+ billion interactions a year across a multichannel environment. With over 15 years of pure cloud expertise, we empower contact center leaders to drive effective engagement strategies on the consumer’s channel of choice. Our leading-edge risk mitigation and security capabilities help clients quickly adapt to a changing business environment. With new features released quarterly, LiveVox remains at the forefront of cloud contact center innovation. Supported by over 450 employees and rapidly growing, we are headquartered in San Francisco with offices in Atlanta, Denver, Bangalore, and Colombia. To learn more, schedule a demo today.

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