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Shifting Contact Volumes in Time for Peak

October 13th, 2020


Abbey Brown


Hi, I’m Abbey from FM Outsource and I want to talk to you today about peak because we’re approaching Christmas now and, for a lot of businesses, that is usually a very busy time of year. But I think a lot of businesses that would usually peak around this time don’t know what to expect. And that’s because they’ve had unusual highs or lows, due to Covid-19, throughout the year.  

Reduce Costs by Shifting Volume

So, what we are doing to prepare our clients for an unknown peak season is to reduce costs as much as we can. We maximize efficiency across the board so that we are prepared for any outcome here.  

So, one of the biggest ways that we do that for our clients is by shifting volume from cost-prohibitive channels, such as telephony, into more cost-effective channels like webchat. So, I’m going to talk about how we do that for our clients without impacting customer experience. 

Become Omnichannel

Shifting volume typically starts, for our clients, in becoming omnichannel, which seems kind of counter intuitive. But it doesn’t actually increase contact volume. What it does is allow customers to gravitate towards the channels that they like best, that work best for them.  

That’s typically the channels that have the highest CSat (customer satisfaction) or first contact resolution. That is often, in our experience, social media and webchat. 

Move Customers


Once you’ve identified those channels, it’s then about “how do you move customers from old channels, like telephony, into those new channels?” And you do that, first of all, by making them the most available channels.  

So, when you go to your contact page, is webchat available 24/7? If not, maybe it should be, because that would contrast with your phone lines, which may only be open 9-5.  

Response Times

And then it’s about giving them the best response times; putting it right there on the page: “you will get a response on live chat in 30 seconds, but if you send us an email, that’s going to take 2 days.” And you need to let customers know that so that they choose to channel that’s going to give them the quickest response.  


And then, the next thing you do: it’s about over-servicing. So, you empower your webchat operators, for example, to offer goodwill gestures, and to deliver a premium service to your customers on that channel. And that will help build loyalty. Customers will come back to the channel that served them best. 

Update Comms

And then the final thing is updating comms across your entire marketing customer journey. So that includes customer confirmation emails and the like. 


And, with all of that done, you should see a slow but gradual shift in channel usage over a period of months.  


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