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Different Ways You Can Utilize a Call Center Software For Your Home Office

Different Ways You Can Utilize a Call Center Software For Your Home Office

Sometimes a home business grows to a point where more employees are needed, such as call center employees, but it is not ready to move into a bigger space. Freelancers and small business owners can easily set up a call center in their home offices, and there are software packages that make it affordable to do. Here are the various things that you will need for your home office call center, and what they are needed for.

  • Basic Tools – There are three basic things that you need for any call center to run efficiently: a computer, an internet connection, and a headset. If you are going to use browser-based software, you won’t even need to have a traditional telephone line, nor will you need a VoIP connection or a VPN. Most companies offer the basics for home offices, so all equipment is comparable and troubleshooting is simple.
  • Remote Access Software – If you have employees who work from their own homes, you can still monitor their calls by using remote access software. This software can also allow your at-home employees to diagnose and repair any technical problems that they may have in the run of their workdays, without having to call anyone in.
  • Browser-Based Software – Let’s talk a bit more about this software. It is easy to set up, because you don’t have to install any hardware or software, and there are no plugins to update. All you have to do is log in and start working. It offers tools you need, including the ability to display customer call history so your agents get a full overview of clients when they call.
  • Cloud Solution – With software like CallTools you can sign up for both inbound and outbound call center solutions, and you can access the system from any location in the world as long as there is an Internet connection. You don’t need to buy or rent any special equipment, because all your agents need are computers and headsets. This is a great way to stay flexible, and to never miss out on any important business calls.
  • Automatic Call Distributor Software – Automatic call distributor (ACD) software is a telephony system. It is included with call center software to answer calls and reroute them to the proper agents. This ensures that all customer calls go to the right people, and only when they are ready to deal with them.
  • Customer Relationship Management SoftwareCRM software allows your agents to work from their own homes. The software will gather information about customers so agents are always on top of things even if they are working from locations other than the office.
  • Call Recording – Because your agents are so busy, it only stands to reason that they may miss something in an extremely important call. With call recording, this isn’t a problem because they can go back and listen to the call later and get any missed information. This is also necessary to have in order to evaluate the quality of the calls.
  • Call Monitoring – You need to know that your agents are doing their jobs properly, and this means that there are occasions when you will need to monitor their calls. When doing this, you can coach the agents and give them tips to make their calls more successful, as well as help out with live calls when necessary.
  • Workforce Management Tools – These call center tools will allow you to create employee schedules, and make sure that your employees are actually adhering to the schedules. It uses a number of factors, including agent availability, call volume, shift flexibility, etc. when creating work schedules.

Featured photo credit: markus spiske via flickr.com

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Jane Hurst

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Last Updated on February 15, 2019

7 Tools to Help Keep Track of Goals and Habits Effectively

7 Tools to Help Keep Track of Goals and Habits Effectively

Now that 2011 is well underway and most people have fallen off the bandwagon when it comes to their New Year’s resolutions (myself included), it’s a good time to step back and take an honest look at our habits and the goals that we want to achieve.

Something that I have learned over the past few years is that if you track something, be it your eating habits, exercise, writing time, work time, etc. you become aware of the reality of the situation. This is why most diet gurus tell you to track what you eat for a week so you have an awareness of the of how you really eat before you start your diet and exercise regimen.

Tracking daily habits and progress towards goals is another way to see reality and create a way for you clearly review what you have accomplished over a set period of time. Tracking helps motivate you too; if I can make a change in my life and do it once a day for a period of time it makes me more apt to keep doing it.

So, if you have some goals and habits in mind that need tracked, all you need is a tracking tool. Today we’ll look at 7 different tools to help you keep track of your habits and goals.

Joe’s Goals

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    Joe’s Goals is a web-based tool that allows users to track their habits and goals in an easy to use interface. Users can add as many goals/habits as they want and also check multiple times per day for those “extra productive days”. Something that is unique about Joe’s Goals is the way that you can keep track of negative habits such as eating out, smoking, etc. This can help you visualize the good things that you are doing as well as the negative things that you are doing in your life.

    Joe’s Goals is free with a subscription version giving you no ads and the “latest version” for $12 a year.

    Daytum

      Daytum

      is an in depth way of counting things that you do during the day and then presenting them to you in many different reports and groups. With Daytum you can add several different items to different custom categories such as work, school, home, etc. to keep track of your habits in each focus area of your life.

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      Daytum is extremely in depth and there are a ton of settings for users to tweak. There is a free version that is pretty standard, but if you want more features and unlimited items and categories you’ll need Daytum Plus which is $4 a month.

      Excel or Numbers

        If you are the spreadsheet number cruncher type and the thought of using someone else’s idea of how you should track your habits turns you off, then creating your own Excel/Numbers/Google spreadsheet is the way to go. Not only do you have pretty much limitless ways to view, enter, and manipulate your goal and habit data, but you have complete control over your stuff and can make it private.

        What’s nice about spreadsheets is you can create reports and can customize your views in any way you see fit. Also, by using Dropbox, you can keep your tracker sheets anywhere you have a connection.

        Evernote

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          I must admit, I am an Evernote junky, mostly because this tool is so ubiquitous. There are several ways you can implement habit/goal tracking with Evernote. You won’t be able to get nifty reports and graphs and such, but you will be able to access your goal tracking anywhere your are, be it iPhone, Android, Mac, PC, or web. With Evernote you pretty much have no excuse for not entering your daily habit and goal information as it is available anywhere.

          Evernote is free with a premium version available.

          Access or Bento

            If you like the idea of creating your own tracker via Excel or Numbers, you may be compelled to get even more creative with database tools like Access for Windows or Bento for Mac. These tools allow you to set up relational databases and even give you the option of setting up custom interfaces to interact with your data. Access is pretty powerful for personal database applications, and using it with other MS products, you can come up with some pretty awesome, in depth analysis and tracking of your habits and goals.

            Bento is extremely powerful and user friendly. Also with Bento you can get the iPhone and iPad app to keep your data anywhere you go.

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            You can check out Access and the Office Suite here and Bento here.

            Analog Bonus: Pen and Paper

            All these digital tools are pretty nifty and have all sorts of bells and whistles, but there are some people out there that still swear by a notebook and pen. Just like using spreadsheets or personal databases, pen and paper gives you ultimate freedom and control when it comes to your set up. It also doesn’t lock you into anyone else’s idea of just how you should track your habits.

            Conclusion

            I can’t necessarily recommend which tool is the best for tracking your personal habits and goals, as all of them have their quirks. What I can do however (yes, it’s a bit of a cop-out) is tell you that the tool to use is whatever works best for you. I personally keep track of my daily habits and personal goals with a combo Evernote for input and then a Google spreadsheet for long-term tracking.

            What this all comes down to is not how or what tool you use, but finding what you are comfortable with and then getting busy with creating lasting habits and accomplishing short- and long-term goals.

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