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How Do Customer Service Managers Prepare For Peak Periods Like Black Friday?

Customer service teams face both predictable and unpredictable peak periods, making traditional planning and temporary hiring challenging. The yoummday platform provides a scalable solution by allowing quick mobilisation of trained talent, ensuring flexibility and efficiency during peak times.

3 June 2024
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Peak periods arrive for every customer service team. Some of them can be planned for. An e-commerce brand knows that Black Friday, and the lead up to Christmas, will be busy periods. This also applies to when a company launches a new product, runs a big marketing campaign, or suddenly reduces their prices.

But some peaks can’t be planned for. Product recalls or technical faults, a marketing campaign that wasn’t communicated to the customer service team, a national crisis like a major weather event, or a negative news story about a company.

Whether planned or unplanned, peak periods can be difficult for customer service teams to handle. The traditional advice is to plan ahead and build enough flexibility into your team to cope with the unexpected disasters.

But this is difficult advice to follow.

It means planning months ahead of major planned events. Recruiting and then training new team members and then letting them go after the peak period is over. How many customer service agents want to take on a new job, go through weeks of training, only to leave after a couple of months? Will you really be able to attract the best talent into these temporary roles?

This article in Call Centre Helper magazine is typical of the advice most customer service experts see - and follow. Forecast the peaks, plan for them by recruiting in advance and training the team. The article says: “The availability of training resource should be considered months in advance, ensuring that they have the right people and the necessary space to facilitate mass training in a limited time period.”

How realistic is this for most customer service managers?

Also, what happens when your marketing team launches a new campaign and doesn’t mention it to the customer service team. If you suddenly have a peak arriving today, what can you do?

Nothing was the short answer. Customer service drops to an absolute minimal level and annoys everyone to the point that some of your customers may never return.

But it doesn’t have to be like this.

The yoummday platform allows you to recruit and train people ahead of when they will be needed and to create a pool of available talent that can be drawn on as needed. This means that in an emergency situation you do have additional resource that can be called on quickly - they are just one text message away from logging in and being available to help.

You can also plan ahead and scale up the team by using yoummday knowing that there is no headache for the HR team later on. If you want to scale back down then you just don’t make any more shifts available on the system.

We are hosting an exciting webinar soon that explores all these issues with two senior customer service directors. You are invited to join the session live and to ask questions during the Q&A. Learn from managers who have already found how to build a flexible approach to Black Friday and ask them directly about their approach.

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Unlocking Black Friday Potential: Exploring Future Trends In Seasonal Workforce Scaling

13th of June 2024 - 10.00 am CEST

• Chris Hague - Head of Brand, yoummday

• Manuela Neidel - Business Process Manager (customer service), 1-2-3 TV

• Alexander Mohr - Customer Director, The Quality Group

To register for the event please click here.

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