Week 3 Discussion – Customer Service(discussion only)
The pdf includes the material needed for the assignment
One of the biggest myths that we should dispel during this course concerns the use of \”Company Call
Centers\”, and how well their representatives provide some measure of customer service. The specific myth goes something like this – you call a customer service number and are put on hold with a message stating something to the effect – \”Due to the high-call volume of calls, your wait time could be several
minutes.\” We know from your readings most companies could predict (i.e., forecast) their daily call volumes within very small error estimates using some of the statistical techniques discussed in these two chapters. This seems to suggest that most managers running call centers would prefer to run their
operations overcapacity (i.e., the amount of anticipated calls exceeds staffing levels). An educated guess is that most callers will get so frustrated that they will hang up and try to figure out a solution to their problem using the organizations website, or call again at a later date and time slot. Many companies during this \’wait time\’ (via a recorded message) provide an \”Option\” to the caller, and direct
clients to visit their website and review their \”Frequently Asked Questions\” FAQ), or to leave their name and phone number for a call back from the company call center.Of course, in fairness to companies that run Call Centers, answering phone calls is an expensive proposition. Most estimates range from $5.00-$10.00 to handle each call once all costs are factored in. This can eliminate part of a firm\’s profit margin pretty quickly; however, customer satisfaction should one of the primary goals at the end of each call. In many cases, the end of your call states a question – \”Did your call center representative answer your question to your satisfaction?\”The evolution of technology and the impact that this will ultimately have (or has had) on capacity planning is of particular interest. Instead of building new facilities around the country, many companies have moved their business operations to \”24/7 Call Centers\” with limited facilities that distribute/ship products, and limited facilities that service these same products.
The question before us today is – \”What are the ultimate implications for demand forecasting and capacity planning in relation to the above scenario/discussion? What changes have you seen or do you foresee in the future for technology advances in customer services?
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