If you are testing solutions for the first time I would first look at the skills that you are testing for. Secondly, determine how flexible that solution is, and how it fits with your company’s needs. You also need to determine how easy it is to use, because generally you have more than one person doing the recruiting and hiring for the call center, and you have several users. Determine if people can be trained quickly on it. You also want to look for a testing vendor that will walk you through the whole implementation process and continue to support you after the sale. - Natalie Hamlett of Qwiz
With regards to pre-employment testing you first need to determine what information you are trying to find out about perspective employees. Pre-employment testing covers a wide range of information that can be evaluated. Next, don’t assume that one test will give you all of the information that you will want to have. Finally, make sure that you have a chance to see how the test has worked in the past, and you should be able to pilot the test. - Joe T. Sefcik of Employment Technologies Corporation
I would advise someone that works on the phone all day to find out a lot more about the company itself. I like to make sure that I understand the culture, and what the approach to that client is. Taking that into consideration I would most likely do a workshop, which can be fun for the employees while also focusing on their development. In the workshop we would look at things like how your voice sounds, ways to improve your voice, and tips and techniques to maintain your voice. An agent waiting for a call should hum, or sing to warm up the voice, and make sure that the voice can project. One thing that sooths your voice is a glass of room temperature water with a slice of lemon. The zest of the lemon sooths your voice, and it makes sure that you are not gasping for air while you talk to an individual. - Katrina Anderson, Independent Training Coach and Consultant
If someone were looking into implementing a selection system I would suggest that if they can answer a few questions in that process, then they will be better off in the long run. The question is what do they want to accomplish by that? Is it simply a turnover challenge, or a productivity challenge, do they have a need to hire people faster because of a competitive labour market? Next, they need to decide where the pain is. Have they quantified that pain? In other words, have they put a dollar amount on what turnover rate costs their organization? If they put a dollar amount down and do a financial analysis, then the final thing they should look at is the return on investment. - Jeff Furst of FurstPerson
With regards to looking at a new location, you can look at risk mitigation. You need to evaluate whether you should have a global footprint versus going to one particular market and setting up one particular facility. In other words, do you want to have all your eggs in one basket? One of the things we are hearing about is people getting into co-sourcing; they are outsourcing some of the low value work and keeping the sales. - Paul Hanna of Invest in Northern Ireland
If you are looking at a workforce management system for the first time I would advise you to start with the business and think about your people. Fundamentally when you deploy workforce management techniques and tools you are changing people’s working lives and that can be a very powerful thing. People are the final deliverer of the service to the customer and we want to stay painfully aware of some of the staff turnover problems that we’ve had in the contact center over time. So start with the people and really think through what it is that you want to change and what you want the business to be like after you have implemented the system, and don’t start with technologies and features. Think through the business issues first and then go through the technologies and features. - Julian Harper of Blue Pumpkin
There are three key things that companies looking to set up a new call center operation needs. First, and most important they would need labour. Second, would be the suitability or availability of a suitable site. Last, would the availability of the appropriate tele-communication infrastructure. - Richard P of the City of Thunder Bay
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