While the size and functions of a contact center determine the exact nature of positions or roles ascribed, there are certain generic roles that are common for most of the contact centers. With the change in the way the contact centers are functioning these days, a lot of the positions and roles have become rather flexible in nature. Yet, the basic crux remains the same.
The typical contact center roles include:
1. Center manager: The center manager could be considered as the captain of the ship. He is eventually responsible for the budget and performance of the center. He is in charge of making the key decisions pertaining to the process, the people, the customers and the technology. He would also be the one responsible for maintaining the liaison with the other center departments including IT, marketing, and HR. Based on what exactly is the size of the concerned contact center, the center manager might have a few team leaders or assistant managers who would be reporting to them. The center managers are also responsible for the development, recruitment and coaching of all the people reporting to him.
2. Manager/Team Leader/Supervisor: A team leader manages a team of contact center agents. The job of the team leader is to ensure that the agents are performing their assigned responsibilities and achieving their individual targets. He also is responsible for reviewing the performance of the agents and giving them feedback so that they could improve in the future. The team leaders have to constantly be in contact with their respective managers so that instructions could be received. Team leaders might also be contacted for making recruitment decisions.
3. Operational Manager: The role of an operational manager is that of a support staff. He is responsible for estimations, resource planning and maintaining a liaison with the team leaders and center manager. This needs to be done so that performances of the agents could be managed effectively and information could be provided. This person is also responsible for maintaining the link with the IT section and the providers of technology. The operational manager needs to be good with numbers and statistics and has to be oriented towards technology.
4. Human resources executives: The human resources department has to be in constant touch with the contact center in order to cater to people-specific activities such as training and recruitment. There are times when the concerned company might depute a human resources executive within the center itself so that operations become comparatively easier. In general, the human resources executives are responsible for fixing the conditions of employments and setting the job descriptions. The concerned executives also need to look after the recruitment and training processes for the employees. These people also need to ensure that all the employees are professionally and personally happy with the processes in the company.
5. Trainers: There are times when the contact centers have to deal with a high volume of induction and training requirements. Consequently, trainers are part of the overall staffing employed by the company. These trainers play an important role in the preparation and delivery of requisite training to the new and existing agents in the center. The role of a trainer is essential in the changed scheme of contact center functioning. With the volume of contact center functioning increasing with each passing day, the trainer has become an integral component of most of the contemporary contact centers.
6. Contact center agent: Well, if you are talking about contact centers, you have to talk about the contact center agents. They are the ones basically carrying out the functions of a contact center. They need to make or receive the calls on behalf of the organization with the intent of solving the customer imbroglios. The role could involve anything starting from making an attempt at selling services or products to sorting out customers’ issues with specific services and products. Certain contact center agents might also be given the responsibility to sort out customers’ issues through postal and email communication. It is essential to understand that there are various roles of the contact center agent and it is not necessary for one agent to know the role of another. For examples, there are agents specifically employed to handle inbound calls and there are also agents who handle the outbound calls. The roles of the agent concerned might depend on his skill set. There are certain contact centers where agents handle both incoming and outgoing calls.
All said and done, there are times when other positions might be required in order to manage the functioning of a certain contact center. It is important to remember that there are some hard and fast rules that have to be followed while staffing a contact center.