November 2013

Regular Columns

From the Editor
by Betty Bouchie

Be Inspired
by Gary Blair

Something to Smile About...

Widgets
by Michael Goumas

Stepping Up Your Game
by Gary Pudles

Five Ways to Sabotage Your Business
by Nancy Friedman

Featured Articles

Nominations Open for NAEO Board of Directors!

2014 Conference: Mark Your Calendar!

Membership Renewal
by Laurie Blow

Membership Committee
by Laurie Blow

Upcoming Webinars

 

Amtelco Annex

Mute Operator During Perfect Answer Greeting
by David Drenk

IS Directory OnCall Update Shifts Feature
by David Drenk

From the Editor

by Betty Bouchie

I am just an...

When attending a recent presentation, a single comment made me stop and think about something. Not that the rest of the presentation was not interesting or useful, but you know the "stop and think” I mean. It is when something hits home and you hear it resound in your head and echo back. That one comment, idea or thought brings a cluster of actions to the foreground. The comment was about training an "operator” not to think or say, "I’m just an operator”.

Each of us has the ability to make a difference. We do not need to change the whole world, but we can make an impact on our world. It might be something as seemingly small as fixing an issue for the next person who calls, or complains. To that person, it could be the biggest and best part of his or her day.

We are not "just” anything. We "are” someone, we "are” something, and we can make a difference if we choose.

Here are two interesting pieces on making an impact. Enjoy!

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Be Inspired

Submitted by Gary Blair

You may say I’m a dreamer but I’m not the only one.

~ John Lennon

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Something to Smile About...

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Widgets

by Michael Goumas, ProComm

Is there a way to automate testing to see if a line has been forwarded, and report to someone if there is a problem?

Yes!

Use Mike L.’s SMS Server with the Scheduler built in to it.

Select the Schedule from the list:

Pick the account for which you want to schedule a line check.

Next set the time and days.

Save.

Next, you will add the Forwarding check.

The address is the phone number to dial. In most cases, it will be the office number of your client.

The description is:
0 Minutes After -> Dial the number
15 Minutes After -> Check the MDR for a call
17 Minutes After -> Send a message to the account if the line check failed.

Now to use IS to script this. I will use 4639 as my example.

This works off of Cue, Repeat, Autodial and Fetch. The SMS server creates an Autodial so I know that it works every time. The reason I use Cue and Fetch is in case they "Control F4” or accidently hit "F4/Done” and then Fetch the account back up. I don’t want to limit them to that one call, only because there is always a possibility of human error.

If the lines are not forwarded, an Infinity message is created and presented by an Autodial.

I changed the default wording to tell the operators to run the script. From there, you can script to your heart’s content.

Here is my basic line check and it is straightforward:

The script dials the number in a client shared field. In my case, Client.GI.Office_Number (thanks, Jake).

If they say No to this:

Now my script has protocols per account to deal with.

Coding:

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Gary Pudles

Stepping Up Your Game

I am only a QUALITY FREAK

by Gary Pudles, AnswerNet

The theme this month for Newslinks is "I am only a…” I started to think about the things I am. I am only an entrepreneur, CEO of call centers and self-proclaimed "mayor” of the industry. But one of the main things I consider myself is a quality freak. Yes, a freak. It’s important to me to provide my clients with accurate service day and night, and I do my best to instill this dedication to quality to my staff.

The best thing we can do for our contact center companies is create quality assurance programs for maintaining and improving the level of service we provide our customers. This includes things such as agent monitoring processes and customer satisfaction surveys. For example, AnswerNet initiated a Net Promoter Score (NPS) program in 2009 and it proved to be a very powerful barometer of performance. It’s a unique tool that measures the loyalty of your customers by asking them, on a scale of 1-10, how likely they would be to recommend us to a friend. By calculating those who would highly recommend us versus those who would not, AnswerNet was able to measure the quality of our service and dig deeper into areas where quality was a concern.

I highly recommend all NAEO members take some time to really reflect on your quality performance, especially during the holiday season – where all call centers will see an influx of TAS and customer service-related overflow needs. NPS may not be for you, but other programs are available that will fit your call center model and help you improve quality standards. Who knows? Maybe you will turn out to be a freak, just like me.

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Five Ways to Sabotage Your Business

by Nancy Friedman, The Telephone Doctor

There are many, many ways to sabotage your business. And, chances are, your staff do some of these now on the phone and in person. Worse yet, you’ve probably even heard some of this yourself (ouch!). That’s the bad news.

The good news is we’re able to bring to you the top five sabotage practices and show you how to neutralize the effects. So get ready. You and your staff are about to be in a much better position to handle the Five Ways to Sabotage Your Business today:

1. I Have No Idea

This is normally used as an excuse, more than anything else. It’s a sure sign that the employee has not been shown how to explain something to the customer. This phrase is used as something to say when the employee doesn’t know what to say.

When the customer hears "I have no idea,” they immediately respond (usually silently) with, "you gotta be kidding me?” Interestingly enough, there normally is a certain blank stare accompanying this statement. Sad.

2. It’s Not My Department

Well, then, whose is it? Let’s remember one of our Telephone Doctor mottos: Tell the customer what you do, not what you don’t do. If you get a call and someone asks for something that you don’t handle, it’s far more effective to say, "I work in the paint department. Let me get you to someone in the area you need.”

This is far more effective than telling someone it’s not your department. And please don’t say, "You have the wrong department.” Take full responsibility with the "I” statement.

3. I Wasn’t Here That Day (or I was on vacation when that happened)

This one really makes me laugh. Does that excuse the company? I don’t remember asking them if they were there that day. Do you really think the customer cares if you weren’t there when their problem happened? Honestly, they don’t, so that’s not even an issue to discuss. Just tackle the problem head on. Apologize without telling them where you were…or weren’t. Remember, you are the company – whether you were at work or on vacation when the issue occurred.

4. I’m New

So? Okay, you’re new. Now what? Does being "new” allow you to be anything but super to the customer? When the customer hears this sabotaging statement, do you really think they say, "Oh, so you’re new? So that’s why I’m getting bad service? Well, then that’s okay…you’re new. Now I understand.”

Yes, even if you are new, the customer honestly believes you should know everything about your job.

Here’s the Telephone Doctor answer on this one. Tell the customer, "Please bear with me, I’ve only been here a few weeks.” That will buy you time. And a bit of sympathy. For whatever reason, hearing the short length of time you are with the company means more to the customer than, "I’m new.” Again, I’m new is more of an "excuse.” Remember to state the length of time. It’s a credibility enhancement. "I’m new” is a credibility buster.

5. Silence on the Phone or a Blank Stare in Person

I called the doctor’s office the other day and asked to change my appointment. It went down like this:

"Hi, this is Nancy Friedman. I have a 9 a.m. appointment with Dr. Ring and I need to move it to later in the day.”

Then nothing for about 10-15 seconds. Zip/nada/zilch.

So I said, "Hello? Are you there?”

A very irritated voice came back with, "I’m checking.”

Wouldn’t it have been nice for her to tell me that? Ah, if the doctors only knew.

Good luck!

Reprinted with the permission of Telephone Doctor Customer Service Training. www.telephonedoctor.com 314.291.1012

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Nominations Open for NAEO Board of Directors!

Inspired to contribute your efforts, creative ideas and passion to the smooth running and further development of our association?

If so, we strongly encourage you to let your name stand for election to the NAEO Board of Directors!

NAEO has begun to look for candidates to run for the NAEO Board for terms beginning in March 2014. There are three openings for next year; the election will be held at the business meeting at the Annual NAEO Conference in Dallas, Texas at the Omni Hotel.

Being a Board Member is an interesting and rewarding job. Besides meeting two or three times a year, you will share ideas and work with some of the best people in the industry. Directors gain special perspective on our industry and, of course, on the functioning of the very successful trade association that NAEO has become. It is also a three-year commitment to work to make a difference in our association and in the well-being of our members.

Candidates seeking election should be individuals who are action-oriented, enthusiastic, honest and hardworking. Both owners and key managers from hospitals and private TAS/Call Center businesses are eligible to run. We require some in-depth experience in an organization that utilizes Amtelco call processing equipment and some time and enthusiasm to take on organizational and industry issues.

Board members are typically the Committee Chairpersons. While we meet in person two or three times a year, between conferences, we also conduct a great deal of business by email, telephone and conference calls. There is no monetary compensation for Board membership; however, in recognition of the efforts of the Board and the work they do at the annual conference, Board members receive a 50% discount on conference fees. Additionally, all expenses that are incurred for travel to and from non-conference board meetings are paid by NAEO. Most of all, you will also get the personal satisfaction that comes from being part of the action for this wonderful association!

So, when the Nominating Committee calls on you, please consider running for the Board. We need people who love the industry and want to learn as much as possible and who are willing, ready and able to share their time and talents for the benefit of our industry. If you are not called, and you would like to be on the ballot, please contact one of us on the nominating committee. You can also nominate a fellow NAEO member or yourself (with two written seconds by current NAEO members) by filling out the nomination form.

Please note that the nomination forms are due to the NAEO Office by Monday, November 11, 2013 at 5:00 p.m. Central Standard Time.

For more specific information on the commitment of being a NAEO Board member, click here for the Board of Directors Job Description.

2014 Nominating Committee
Matt Crocker, Chair
Jim Wagner
Robin Bailey

For more information, contact Andy Shelp, Executive Director, at management@naeo.org.

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2014 Conference: Mark Your Calendar!

2014 Conference Logo

March 10-13, 2014

Omni Dallas Hotel • 555 South Lamar Street • Dallas, TX 75202

NAEO Curtin and Collins Scholarships Now Available

Apply Online | Download the Poster

Applications are due no later than November 20 end of day.

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Laurie Blow

Membership Renewal

By Laurie Blow

It’s renewal time! The majority of NAEO members renew in November and December each year, and your Membership Committee and the Ewald Consulting team have been working hard to make the process as easy as possible.

In 2013, NAEO upgraded (at no cost to NAEO) its membership management software to Your Membership. This new platform brings new value to members and allows for better interaction. To get the most out of the site, it is important that all members login to www.naeo.org and update your user profiles. If you do not have your login information, please contact member services at 800-809-6373 or management@naeo.org. The website also has useful guides and training tools under the "Website Usability” button on the left side of the home page.

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Membership Committee

By Laurie Blow

2013 has been a busy year for the Membership Committee. We have implemented the new dues structure, transitioned to a new membership management program, launched the Mentor Program and established a hospital sub-committee. I would like to personally thank the following committee members for their hard work and dedication: Andy Shelp, Lisa Phillips, Rob Bennett, Ron Waine, Tifani Leal, Gail Russell, Betty Bouchie and Sydney Ryan. A very special thanks to Lisa for the successful launch of the new member mentor program and Betty for acting as hospital liaison to the Board of Directors.

We are currently looking for new committee members to assist with restructuring the Associate Member program. Associate Members are organizations or individuals who share a common interest with and desire to support and promote the purpose of NAEO (including, but not limited to those organizations engaged in the selling and providing products or services to regular members of NAEO). We want to expand the number of Associate Members and bring more value to our regular members through their offering of services. If you have an interest in assisting with this project, please contact management@naeo.org.

 

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Upcoming Webinars

The NEW NAEO Professional Liability Program
November 13, 2013 | 2:00 pm ET

Presenter: Laura McCormick
Host: Evelyn Portinari

What it is, why you need it, and how to get it!

Whether you currently have E&O coverage or are just thinking about buying it, tune in to find out what you need to consider when evaluating professional liability (E&O) coverage for your TAS.

Laura McCormick from US Risk, the endorsed insurance provide for NAEO, will go over the nuts and bolts of professional liability, and the things you need to consider about the services you offer, and who your clients are, when evaluating this important coverage.

The NEW NAEO Professional Liability Program
December 4, 2013 | 2:00 pm ET

Presenter: Laura McCormick
Host: Evelyn Portinari

Think you don’t need Employment Practices Liability Insurance for your TAS?

Consider this:

  • A private company is more likely to have an EPL claim than a general liability or property claim.
  • 3 out of every 5 employers are sued by former employees.
  • 65% of all companies that have ever fired an employee have been hit with an employment related lawsuit.
  • The median award for all plaintiff verdicts is in excess of $250,000.
  • More than 40% of all Employment Practices claims are brought against firms with less than 100 employees.

Tune in to learn about employment practices liability exposure, how you can insure for it, and save money with the risk management benefits that come with the insurance package!

 

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david drenk

Mute Operator During Perfect Answer Greeting

by David Drenk

A system option for muting an operator’s microphone during Perfect Answer greetings has been added to Infinity Supervisor. The option automatically mutes the operator’s microphone while the Perfect Answer greeting is playing to prevent the operator from accidentally interrupting the greeting.

To enable this feature, open Infinity Supervisor and click the System Settings icon. The System Setup pages are displayed.
Click the Window drop menu and drag down to "System Options.” The System Options pages are displayed.

Click the Op/Station tab. The General page is displayed.

Select the check box labeled "Mute audio during Perfect Answer.”

This feature was developed in response to ideas submitted through Amtelco’s Innovation Machine.
For more information about the Innovation Machine, click here.

Requirements:

  • Infinity 5.60.11 or later
  • Infinity Supervisor 5.60.10 or later

Amtelco Part Number: 232S391

 

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Kelli Harrigan

 

IS Directory OnCall Update Shifts Feature

by David Drenk

The Update Shifts feature can update shifts automatically when a change is made to a Shift Definition in IS Directory OnCall. The changes are made to all relevant shifts starting on or after the date that you specify in the Update Shifts dialog box.

When setting up an IS Directory OnCall schedule in IS Supervisor, Shift Definitions are used to define the dates and times of the on-call shifts and the resources that are required. Shift Definitions create templates that can either be selected from the New menu as needed (Selectable Shift Definitions) or be displayed in the schedule on certain dates and at certain times (Defined Shift Definitions). Both types of Shift Definitions do not create any shifts until a resource is assigned to them.

Changing a Shift Definition

To edit a Shift Definition, click the Directory & Scheduling icon (formerly known as the Directory icon) in IS Supervisor. The IS Directory is displayed.

Select a subject from the Subject menu that contains an IS Directory OnCall schedule.

Click the OnCall tab. If the OnCall tab is not displayed, the subject that you selected is not enabled for IS Directory OnCall.

Click the name of an on-call schedule in the list on the lower left side of the OnCall page. Then, click the Edit icon (the pencil). The OnCall Schedule Properties window is displayed.

Click the Shift Definitions tab. The Shift Definitions that have been created for the schedule are displayed.

On the Shift Definitions pane, select the Shift Definition that you want to edit, and then click the Edit button. The Shift Definition Properties window is displayed.

Make a change to the Shift Definition properties, then click the Save button. The Update Shifts dialog box is displayed.

Update Existing Shifts Starting On

The Update Shifts dialog box contains a setting labeled "Update existing shifts starting on.” The current date is selected by default. To select a different date, click the Calendar icon and select a date on the calendar.

  • To select a date in the previous month, click the left arrow icon.
  • To select a date in the next month, click the right arrow icon.

Click the Yes button to update the shifts.

Any shifts that were created with the Shift Definition that you are editing and that begin on or after the date selected are updated to reflect the changes that you made to the Shift Definition. Any shifts that were created with the Shift Definition and that start before the selected date are not changed and will still reflect the previous Shift Definition settings.

To leave all assigned shifts as they are and only apply the changes to the templates that have not been assigned resources, click the No button on the Update Shifts dialog box.

Requirements:

  • IS Supervisor 5.60.4177.02 or later
  • IS Directory OnCall
  • SQL Server 2005 or later

Amtelco Part Number: 232MP100

 

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© 2013 National Amtelco Equipment Owners. All Rights Reserved.
NewsLinks is distributed quarterly to NAEO members.

National Amtelco Equipment Owners
www.naeo.orgmanagement@naeo.org
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