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Mastering the Art of Call Center Communication for Community Financial Institutions

By Jonny Manousaridis, Eltropy

June 2023

When it comes to consumer satisfaction it’s easy to get caught up in some of the flashier things – fancy furnishings or prizes for enrolling in a service, for example. However, at the end of the day, the number one thing consumers want from their community financial institution is prompt, reliable and clear communication.

Call centers play a vital role in a consumer's ability to communicate with their financial institution. If you’re looking to get the most out of your financial institution’s call center, we have tips on how to master the art of call center communication.

Building Blocks of Effective Communication

Call centers for financial institutions act as a central hub for answering questions, resolving issues, service enrollments and purchasing products. Well-trained and knowledgeable agents are crucial to keeping consumers informed.

However, knowledge isn’t the only valuable asset that a call center agent might possess. “Soft skills” such as active listening, empathy, problem-solving and professionalism add to the overall call experience and will create a better consumer experience than just knowledge alone. Callers want to feel heard, understood and valued by their financial institution, and call center agents are often the ones tasked with portraying that message.

How can call centers foster an environment that prioritizes these skills? First, provide agents with the resources they need to solve problems quickly. When the tools are available and simple to use, it becomes easier to focus on serving the member and not figuring out the problem. Second, utilize data to inform training practices. Analyzing and understanding texts, phone calls and video sessions in real-time can increase learning opportunities and empower agents to reach their full potential.

The Importance of Enabling Conversations Anytime, Anywhere

In addition to knowledge and soft skills, consumers want to be able to have conversations at their convenience. In our fast-paced and globalized world, it’s not always easy to drop into a local branch for a face-to-face conversation with a financial expert. Consumers are increasingly likely to want to communicate through methods such as text messaging or video conferencing, depending on their needs.

Call center agents often find that a conversation that starts out one way often needs to pivot to a different type of connection. For example, a consumer may initiate a phone call, only to discover that an online co-browse session would be the best way to get their questions answered. Being able to seamlessly transition from one method to another saves time and effort for both the consumer and call center agent, and allows the consumer to experience the highest level of service and satisfaction.

Technology That Supports Call Center Communication

In order to create an environment that supports optimal call center communication, the right technology is key.

To master the art of call center communication, agents and consumers need options. In fact, the term “call center” is something of a misnomer. In our modern times, referring to it as a “contact center” would be more accurate since phone calls are no longer the only way to communicate.

Eltropy provides digital channels that can revolutionize a financial institution’s contact center. With text, chat, digital audio, video and phone options, agents are capable of smoothly switching between channels in order to serve members in the most effective way possible.

Additionally, imagine if you were able to analyze every agent-consumer conversation using technology that could identify tone, compliance, sales opportunities and more. As mentioned previously, this type of data can help inform training practices that create a consumer-oriented culture within a call center. With Eltropy’s Omnichannel Conversation Intelligence, contact center leaders can have daily insight into the strengths and opportunities of call center agents. This type of immediate and specific data can provide the information needed to transform your financial institution’s communication systems into an art form.

By adopting effective call center communication strategies, community financial institutions can foster strong relationships with their members, increase member satisfaction and drive business success. Connect with us to learn more about how Eltropy can help set up your community financial institution for success.

About Eltropy

Eltropy enables credit unions to communicate with members over text message in a secure and TCPA-compliant way. Using Eltropy’s platform, lending, collections, sales, marketing, service, risk management, internal communications and other teams at credit unions can leverage text messaging to boost member engagement and enhance the member experience. Eltropy also integrates with IT systems, such as Symitar and Corelation, and provides member engagement insights.