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Article : Five Tips to Prepare Your Contact Centers for Weather-Related Emergencies

#contactcenterworld, @tcn

Every year tropical storms hit the coast lines of the United States causing billions of dollars worth of damages to cities, and a lengthy restoration process for those communities affected by the storm. Unfortunately, this year is no different as millions of Americans recover after Hurricanes Harvey and Irma. Preparing contact centers for weather-related emergencies is a complex, multi-pronged strategy that effects all industries (especially public utility companies, power companies, local municipalities, schools and hospitals). Below are five tips to help prepare your contact centers for unexpected weather-related emergencies:

  1. Create An Emergency Action Plan

It’s not easy to forge connectivity while performing under the worst conditions; therefore, it’s imperative to have a pre-existing plan in place for those responding to the situation both on the ground and digitally. If your company hasn’t created a formal emergency action plan/procedure for responding to weather-related crises, start drafting one as soon as possible. If you have a plan already established, make sure to review and revise said plan on an annual/bi-annual basis to ensure your technology, tactics and procedures are up to date. In addition to drafting and establishing an emergency action plan with your staff, schedule routine trainings on how to effectively activate and execute the emergency action plan.

  1. Invest In The Right Communication Tools

Don’t wait until a natural disaster to invest in the appropriate communication tools to reach and respond to customers and/or clients in a time of crisis. When researching contact center features, consider the following capabilities:

  • Call targeting - Create a customized list of customers to contact (or not contact) in a specific geographic area affected by inclement weather.
  • Instant callback – Return calls to a designated telephone number by pressing a single key on your telephone keypad.
  • Remote access and deployment - The ability to deploy a message at any time, from any location, using only a phone to record and send a broadcast with the cloud technology.
  • Real-time reporting - Immediately know which customers have received your message and which calls should be attempted again.


  1. Be On Top of Your Data

Before an emergency occurs, establish a protocol to ensure all databases are up to date and complete. In a time of crisis, information needs to be accurate and direct in order to save time and resources. Additionally, data should be backed up in more than just one place, and employees should have alternative ways for remotely accessing the information.

  1. Ongoing Communication with Customers

Consumers are accustomed to obtaining information when they need it, even in the midst of an historic weather event. Receiving up-to-date information during a weather-related emergency is not only desirable, it’s expected. In order to effectively conduct outreach to customers either during or after a storm, compile detailed customer profiles that outline the best available communication channels for each customer. Customers must be able to receive instant updates about their situation directly. In these circumstances, ongoing, proactive and honest communication is the best policy for interacting with customers to minimize hysteria. Communicating quickly, efficiently and accurately during a weather event or other crisis requires a speedy procedure and a systematic way to deliver thousands of messages within minutes.

  1. Omnichannel Outreach

In today’s digital world, contact centers need to be made aware of all alternative ways to contact customers (other than cold calling) during a state of emergency. Knowing your customer’s preferred method of contact (i.e. text, email, call, social media, etc.) can be abundantly helpful for getting in contact with customers before, during or after a storm. In previous years, contact centers utilized social media to interact and engage with customers during weather-related emergencies. For example, during Hurricane Sandy, twitter became a major source of news and information for those who had no power but were able to access the social media site on their mobile devices. Other effective ways to contact customers during natural disasters include the use of cloud-based omnichannel technologies such as voicemail drop, short message service (SMS), email blasting and chat features. Omnichannel solutions provide companies with the ability to connect and engage with customers in a non-invasive manner, allowing them to listen/read, respond and save messages at their own convenience.

Is your business ready to withstand the next storm? Before the next one hits the United States, consider implementing some of the tips and strategies outlined above to enable your contact center to seamlessly engage with your customers and enhance communication efforts during a crisis.
#contactcenterworld, @tcn


About TCN:
Company LogoAs a leader in the voice broadcasting industry since 1999, TCN Broadcasting is recognized worldwide as the preeminent global provider of on-demand, end-to-end Interactive Voice Communication (IVC) solutions. Their cutting-edge communication technology has rendered expensive hardware, subscription software, and crowded call centers obsolete.
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Today's Tip of the Day - Outsourcing Service Agreements

Read today's tip or listen to it on podcast.

Published: Wednesday, October 18, 2017

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2021 Buyers Guide IVR

 
1.) 
Call Center Studio

Call Center Studio
Call Center Studio is the world’s first call center built on Google and is one of the most secure and stable systems with some of the industry’s best reporting. It is one of the most full-featured enterprise grade systems (with the most calling features, one of the best call distribution, outbound dialing features and integrations—including IVR, AI Speech Recognition, blended inbound/outbound calling and includes Google’s new Dialogflow and Speech API. Call Center Studio is the absolute easiest to use (with a 10 minute setup), and is the price performance leader with lower equipment cost and less setup time.
PH: +1 512-872-7565

2.) 
Computer Data Services, LLC

VIRTUAL PBX
Get the benefits of an expensive, on-premise telephone system without the high price tag and annoying maintenance.

- Never miss another phone call
- No more busy signals
- Feature rich
- Answer your calls from anywhere
PH: 216.662.5870

3.) 
Megacall

Virtual Switchboard
Megacall provides a fully customised Virtual Switchboard software for all companies (including IVR service). No matter the size of your business, our services adapt to the needs of each client.

Are you looking for a more effective way to communicate with your customers? Discover the advantages of using the IVR and how it can help in your communications.
PH: +34 952 667 511

4.) 
MightyCall

MightyCall's IVR that will increase your business’s efficiency at a fraction of the cost of a secretary. Your auto-attendant is designed to:
- Greet callers
- Deliver necessary information
- Forward calls to the appropriate extension
- Take human error out of the system
PH: +1 (888) 256-8312

5.) 
Nuxiba Technologies

CenterWare
Provide your customers with an effortless self-service experience. Easily create menus using predefined or custom prompts and data dips and route customers to live agents when needed.

Enable your customers to make payments and access information 24/7 at their convenience. Request a quote or live demo today.

6.) 
OpsTel Services

SPEED
The SPEED solution solves for service level issues while cost optimizing the environment with automation.

Provides an enhanced way to speed up & optimize invoking temporary agent skills configuration changes into the contact center environment.

Speed allows you to schedule both future changes & temporary changes that auto-revert back to the original state when scheduled time expires.

Speed features:

*Automated / Scheduled Temporary Agent Skills Configuration Management
*Immediate Temporary or Reoccurring Schedule Skills Configuration Changes
*Easy to Use/Operations Administration Focused
*Descriptive Monitoring Activity Dashboard
*Detailed “End to End’ Audit Trail and Performance Monitoring
PH: 1+480-435-9390

7.) 
Teckinfo Solutions Pvt. Ltd.

IVR Edge
IVR Edge is a high performance, robust and scalable ivr system that works on various leading hardware such as Dialogic, Keygoe and Synway etc. It can handle the simplest of simple to the most complex of requirements to when it come to creating an IVR. Integration with any 3rd party database, be it for banking, telecom, insurance, travel, payment gateway etc can be handled with ease. Ideally suited to create Hosted IVR and virtual patching solutions with scalabilities that can range from 4 to 128 E1’s per setup with voice recording and CDR functionality. Integration with leading text to speech (TTS) and speech recognition ASR engines add to the flexibility and functionality.
 

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