DSC Tech Library
This section of our technical library presents information and documentation relating to Call Center technology and Best Practices plus software and products.
Since the Company's inception in 1978, DSC has specialized in the development of communications software and systems. Beginning with our CRM and call center applications, DSC has developed computer telephony integration software and PC based phone systems. These products have been developed to run on a wide variety of telecom computer systems and environments.
The following article relates to call center technology or customer service best practices and techniques.
Call Center Statistics
Call Center Miscellany
A research study on the effectiveness at serving customers and prospective customers online at the leading North American financial institutions revealed that 56% of the firms studied either did not accept Web-based queries or did not respond to e-inquiries placed online by potential customers.
Onyx Software, 6/2000
UK blue-chips are more eager to adopt a "clicks and mortar" strategy than their European counterparts, according to a qualitative survey of 171 British, German and Dutch. Of the companies surveyed, the UK had the worst record when it came to sharing customer information between existing departments. The combination of these two factors suggests that UK companies are developing e-commerce divisions in technical isolation from existing operations, compromising quality and consistency of customer service.
Chordiant Software, 6/2000
Only 0.1 to 1.0 percent of customer care contacts in the utility industry are handled today via the Internet, even though roughly two-thirds of calls to a utility involve transactions that could be handled via the Web. Based on the pace of the shift from CSR calls to IVR calls, E Source believes that utilities could shift 10 to 30 percent of their call center traffic to Internet channels over a five-year period if they develop and consistently support an integrated customer care strategy and if they target those Internet-enabled customers who do business with utilities.
E Source, 5/2000
Only 36% of e-customers are satisfied with their Internet purchasing experiences. Poor handling of e-contacts create 30-48% lower customer loyalty among the two-thirds of e-contactors who are not satisfied. E-customers across all industries expect acknowledgment of their e-contact within one hour. However, only 12% receive an acknowledgment within an hour and only 42% receive one with 24 hours. One-fourth of all companies are pushing outgoing e-mails to customers with suggestions and promotions. Only one-third of e-customers indicate a high interest in receiving such e-mails.
International Customer Service Association (ICSA) and e-Satisfy.com (formerly TARP), 3/00.
AOL handles more than 805 million instant messages per day. This is reportedly 12 times the number of emails they handle, and is more message traffic than the US Postal Service moves each day.
David Hsieh, FaceTime Communications, 9/99.
A survey conducted jointly by UK-based Hewson Consulting and eGain Communications compared the average response times of companies to e-mails about customer service issues in the US and the UK:
|Two plus days
|No email address
More than 150 UK companies were contacted. Companies were sent an email with a relevant, time critical question regarding their products and services, and a request for a brochure. Despite these obvious buying signals, after two weeks of waiting, only 50% of the requested brochures had arrived.
US source: Jupiter Communications, March 1999.
UK source: Hewson Consulting/eGain Communications, June 1999 (both provided by eGain).
A poll of 143 call center executives on Y2K issues found that:
- 61% say their company doesn't have a Y2K strategy.
- 43% have not formally evaluated or forecasted the expected increase in call volumes (or other traffic) due to Y2K.
- 40% are not developing a contingency plan.
Why do customers leave? Primarily because they don't get what they want. But it has less to do with price than attention. 45% of those who leave do so because of "poor service"; another 20% because of "lack of attention" (that's 65% leaving because you've done something wrong). 15% leave because they can find a cheaper product elsewhere, and another 15% because they find a better product elsewhere, and 5% for other unspecified reasons.
Call Center Enterprises and The Forum Group, 5/98 (presentation at CTI Expo, Baltimore).
More than 31 million PCs in the United States access the Internet regularly, double the number found a year earlier. Home PCs continue to account for the largest portion of Internet users, but the number of workplace PCs accessing the Internet has increased most rapidly, rising from 3.6 million PCs in early 1996 to nearly 11 million in early 1997. Once connected, the most popular Internet activities are e-mail and Web browsing, followed by downloading software. 30 percent of home Internet users reported engaging in one or more commercial activities, such as using the internet for home banking and stock trading, or to purchase consumer services or electronics.
Computer Intelligence's 1997 Consumer Technology Index (CTI) Study.
More than half of all consumers who retrieve on-line product information say they’re placing orders by phone or by going to local stores. The Internet is becoming an integral part of the purchasing process whether the purchase is made on-line or off-line. Even though on-line sales racked were $3.3 billion in 1997, another $4.2 billion in sales of off-line consumer goods and services were influenced by on-line information. Less than a third of on-line purchases resulted from clicking on banner ads. Consumers tend to use the Internet more as an electronic yellow pages than like as on-line direct marketing response medium.
The Consumer Online Commerce Report (from Cyber Dialogue).
62% of online shoppers plan on doing more purchasing that way. Only 4% said they'd do less. Also, more than a quarter of traditional shoppers studied said they intended to buy online. 59% of consumers who purchased online said they were highly satisfied with the service they received.
AT&T and Mercer Management Consulting, 1998.
Cost of a typical telephone call: $2-5 each. Cost of a typical web transaction: $.25-$.50 each. One live call = approximately 10 web transactions.
Alltel, presentation at ICCM, 1998.