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 Software – CRM 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