Over the last 14 months, many office and call center employees have been working from home amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. Now that vaccines are rolling out and all adults in the US are eligible to become vaccinated, businesses are beginning to open their offices, returning to a more traditional setting once again.
With the return to traditional offices, your business will see some changes. Still, the effects of the last year will be felt well into the future. The pandemic is not yet over, so your business and call centers should still implement the many recommended safety precautions. The long-term effects on offices and call centers are still unknown. What effects will this new normal have on your business and its customers?
Changes to the Business Environment
Even as call center agents return to the workplace and prepare to get back in the groove of the office environment, the effects of the time spent away will be impossible to ignore. Sanitary precautions should still be taken into consideration, especially in a call center environment. These include:
- Spaced out work areas
- Sanitized phones and headsets
- Masks when appropriate
With limited workspace, it is likely that agents will be continuing to work from home, at least part-time. This hybrid schedule is a new phenomenon that agents have become comfortable with during recent months, especially because many of the business calls received can be answered from anywhere.
With the use of headsets, remote networks, and re-routed office phones, agents have the ability to take calls at home or in the office. This was a common practice for many businesses during the pandemic.
An Evolved Customer Base
Call center agents are not the only people who have adapted to the year at home. Customers who once perused stores and browsed selections have moved to online shopping and e-commerce. With customers at home, they spent more time with the recreational items they already own, and they have purchased new ones to keep themselves entertained.
Telephone communications have continued strong throughout the pandemic, though, and call centers have seen a massive call volume increase throughout the pandemic.
- Customer service calls
- Technical support calls
- Sales calls
Customers will likely continue this trend into the future as the return to traditional offices continues. Primed with the added experience, call center agents will be more primed than ever to answer customer calls with accuracy and efficiency, especially in the office where resources are more accessible.
Necessary Technological Advancements
During the early days of the pandemic, you likely saw areas where your business was lacking. While it might have been frustrating and harrowing at the time, it allowed you and your business to take stock of these weaknesses and improve upon them. All of the following were of the utmost importance to call centers during the pandemic:
- Conference calls
- Remote networking
- Digital filing techniques
Strategies that work in a day-to-day office environment might seem fine until they are put to the ultimate test, and their faults are uncovered. So, when these practices were tried during work-from-home, many fell short. In order to adapt and survive, businesses were forced to upgrade outdated technologies and brainstorm ways to overcome these challenges.
Luckily, these technological advancements will continue into the traditional office atmosphere. Your call center agents will be working more efficiently and with less stress due to the implementation of better methods and systems.
Your customers will benefit from these advancements, as well. When your call center is streamlined, customer calls will be answered more quickly. There will be less opportunity for either your agent or your customer to become frustrated or flustered. When you give your agents the proper tools to work with, customer loyalty can improve.
About Endicott Call Centers
Endicott Call Centers is a national call center company with omni-channel services. We are fully equipped to help you with your business and with any particular circumstances. We draw on decades of experience to help you make the right decisions for your business.
Endicott offers full-service virtual receptionists and a wide variety of other services to help you run your business more efficiently. With Endicott, you have access to:
- Highly-trained, professional Agents & Receptionists
- Customized scripts
- Live agents 24 hours a day
- 100% US-based locations
- English & Spanish Speaking Agents
- HIPAA-compliant For Medical Support
- 24/7 Solutions for Dentists, Legal offices, eCommerce, and many other industries.
- Full access to call management and tracking tools that enable you to regularly monitor and evaluate our performance and help you manage your business effectively
Please request a quote or call 800-947-3227 to learn more about our solutions for creating exceptional customer service experiences for your clients. We’re happy to offer our insight into what your customers and employees seek from your company.