Have you ever wondered what a day in the life of a call center manager is like? What are the challenges they need to overcome on a daily basis?
In reality, call center managers really do have a lot to deal with: when it comes down to it, they hold responsibility for the overall performance and budget of the organization, and ultimately create the foundation for a call center’s success. Call center managers are expected to be able to see the whole picture and have mastered the ins and outs of the call center industry.
Although you may imagine call center managers to be powerful people, sitting in their offices, issuing instructions and delegating work to their employees, in reality, managers burn the candle at both ends.
We spoke to Arnold Vancsók, call center manager at Protocall – one of Central Europe’s leading outsourced call centers – who showed us what an average day in the life of a call center manager is like. Read on, and find out what it takes to be like Arnold.
No two days are ever the same
“At a call center, no two days are ever the same. Of course, there are certain routine tasks I have to carry out on a daily basis, such as reporting, reviewing KPIs and attending meetings, but what’s most important is the ability to be able to react immediately to issues as they come up.”
A call center manager has to be prepared for anything, while also being able to function well under high pressure. At a call center, calls come in all the time (including through the night), and you can never know what will happen the next day. In fact, working as a call center manager is like riding a roller coaster – It’s a sometimes scary, but overall enjoyable experience.
Talk to agents and team leaders
Call center managers have to actively work together with their team of call center agents and supervisors on a daily basis. A great call center manager should not just give orders to their employees, but also get their hands dirty, overseeing agents’ performance, and intervene in escalated calls when necessary. And as any call center manager will tell you, escalated calls are a major part of any call center’s average day.
Since it is agents who spend all their time on the phone with customers, collecting feedback from them is another essential daily task for any call center manager. As we already mentioned in a previous article, you should never estimate the power of customer feedback. Talking to agents can provide valuable information on how to improve the call center’s operations, and also helps make agents feel they hold an important role, and are valued by the company. And as we all know, a happy team is a productive team.
A call center manager’s daily task: reporting, reporting, reporting
Ask any call center manager what’s the first thing they do on an average day in the call center, and you can be sure that they’ll tell you: it’s reporting. One of the most important daily responsibilities of any call center manager is to provide reports on various aspects of call center performance, and then forward this information to the relevant departments in the organization.
And as we all know, call centers provide a goldmine of information, so it’s no surprise that call center managers typically rely on powerful reporting tools on a daily basis to process this data and create reports that can improve the call center’s overall performance. If you’re curious how you can use the valuable data your call center holds, make sure to check out our article on data analytics.
Agent recruitment and retention
Interviews are an essential part of any call center’s activity, and so call center managers have to actively participate in the agent recruitment process.
Furthermore, call center managers have to deal with other labor issues such as the lack of professionals in the industry. Labor shortage affects a great number of sectors, and call centers are no exception. As Arnold noted, “we’re constantly working on new methods to deal with labor shortage. As we are fortunately an outsourced call center, we can transfer our agents more easily, if necessary, to work on high-priority projects. That is why we focus on multi-skilled agents and convince our clients to invest more in the workforce.”
Arnold also reminded us that call centers are notorious for having extremely stressful work environments, and therefore, agent retention is also a fairly high consideration: “fluctuation is another challenge I have to face every day in the call center, although, fortunately, agent retention is quite low at our organization. We always try to keep our agents happy, and inspire their loyalty by offering activities and packages that enable them to grow.”
Finding the balance
Improving customer satisfaction, balancing the budget, and making the call center a great place to work at are all examples of the everyday tasks call center managers carry out. And of course, finding the balance between these considerations is the ultimate challenge for any call center manager.
“As an outsourced call center manager, I have the responsibility to carry out profitable campaigns, deliver excellent results and maintain a high standard of work on behalf of our clients, while last but not least, provide an excellent work environment for our employees. For me, the biggest daily challenge is to find the balance between these responsibilities, in a way that ensures that everybody gets the best out of our call center.”
About our interviewee: Arnold Vancsók joined the call center industry back in 2007, and has occupied several leading positions, such as supervisor, project manager and process manager, throughout the years. Currently, he is call center manager at Protocall, one of Central Europe’s leading outsourced call centers.