My Transcom Experience

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Removing the fear of closing a sale

The moment of truth of any sales services is when the agent has to make the final question and ask for confirmation to close the deal. But it is also a loaded moment for most of the agents that may experience what we call: fear of closing.

Experience tells us that we can only influence around a 50 to 55% of the persons we contact during our workday. Although we would like that all these individuals accepted our offer or product, we know that this is not at realistic target. Furthermore, we have to be aware that our customer’s refusal in most cases is due to a set of variables as the price, their economic situation, bad previous experience etc. All these factors have nothing to do with our agents’ performance.

When facing a challenging customer, the agent tends to conclude that person is not interested. This negative mindset generates itself a negative response. Therefore, to minimize the risk of a negative answer we must be mentally positive and not let our attitude impact the outcome of the call.

At Transcom, we continuously invest  in our agents’ training and spend many hours on product training, telemarketing techniques, techniques for dealing with conflict situations, teaching agents how to handle objections, etc…But do we invest enough time to teach agents how to introduce the “closing question”, are we investing enough effort to prepare them for a refusal, and eliminating their psychological barrier to the customer’s negative answer?

In order to prepare our agents to overcome the apprehension they may have to face in a call we must work through training and role play, practicing different situations that we will find in our daily work life.

We are convinced that the success of a good education and training depends on several factors:

  • Adequate knowledge of our products so that every agent properly can explain the benefits in case the person decides to close the deal during the call.
  • Empathize with our customers to create a trusting environment that results in an acceptance of the call as a valid sales channel.
  • Eliminate fears to solve any query or objection posted by our customers, learning to turn those weaknesses into strengths that customers can appreciate.
  • Overcoming fear of rejection, which causes insecurity, and therefore a call lengthening when making the final closing question.

By training our agents in all the mentioned points above we will be able to perform a graceful closing call and to achieve a positive resolution in a higher success rate for our clients.

If we want to improve our customer experience, we must be able to empathize with customers and make them feel comfortable during the call. In each interaction we must ensure that our customer feels that the decision is theirs.  Only working with these principles we will be able to consolidate new customers, improve our customer’s satisfaction index and, possibly, increase the rate of persistence by achieving a greater sense of affiliation between the customer and our partner.

How Transcom Sevilla uses sport as a motivational and performance improvement tool

At Transcom we know that one of the key success factors in our business is our adaptability. That is why we at Transcom Sevilla strive to differentiate ourselves from our competitors by having well-trained sales teams, with the ability to sell any product, from insurance, up to banking, telecommunications, leisure, etc… It helps us to get the best results for our clients.

For any outbound team, to reach sales targets is essential for the success of the service; however, it is not easy to achieve high performance.

Given the current economic situation, selling is much more complex than it used to be. It is a fact that consumers have more ways to review and compare the information provided by companies, which makes them even more demanding, and as a result, it is more difficult to close the sale.

Mountain bike team Transcom Sevilla

Therefore, we must strengthen tolerance to frustration, and not get discouraged by the numerous negative answers that we receive daily. Many times this is a distinctive feature of the sales process, but we must nevertheless work together to build a motivated and strong team.

Motivation may be tied to financial benefits, but this is not the only or the best way. We can also activate different handles, as games, group dynamics, competitions, etc … so that all employees feel part of a team and fight for a common goal.

In this sense, sport is an ideal option, as it is a way for peers to improve their welfare, combating tension, stress and monotony, which undoubtedly affect employee productivity.

For this reason, the Training and Quality team decided to create a Mountain Bike group helping the agents to identify themselves with the values of sport: respect, healthy living, teamwork, fair play, effort, and ability to overcome frustration.

Mountain bike team Transcom Sevilla

Each week, new challenges are set, new routes are designed to avoid routine and to increase communication and interpersonal relationships with different partners from different areas of the company, resulting in an improved working environment.

A group of employees becomes a team when all its members learn to work together, in the search of a common goal. A team that improves their interpersonal relationships outside the workplace will also work in a better environment and therefore, will increase their professional performance.

Author: César Mesa

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The voice is the first telemarketing tool

Some people perceive telemarketing as an annoying sales technique. To them it’s nothing but a non-requested call made from a contact center in order to sell a product in an unexpected moment to an unknown customer.  In fact, it is commonly accepted that telemarketers mechanically read a script to offer a particular product. But I want to talk about our outbound business from the Transcom perspective. We follow a non-intrusive, well-structured strategy, and we handle each call with the utmost respect for the consumer. There is, of course, a sales argument prepared to capture the customer’s attention quickly and to expose, briefly, the product’s main benefits. Conducted by well-prepared professionals, it is a sales tool that performs very well even in a difficult economic context such as this. However, as all commercial approaches, telemarketing has its own ‘moments of truth’, with the added difficulty of not being able to rely on nonverbal communication; we must focus our effort in how to handle the initial contact.

Transcom_13

To connect with another person over the phone, we can only count on our auditory perception; the only tool that the telemarketer has to keep the customer’s attention during the first seconds of communication is his/her voice. Deprived of eye contact, the agent needs to engage in active listening, paying attention to what and how his/her interlocutor expresses. Any nuance in the voice tone can be decisive and can help reveal our customer’s motivation to buy our product. We should try to ‘tune in’ to the client as quickly as possible. To do this we must adapt our voice to our interlocutor, using key words or phrases that help us to inspire confidence and the utmost respect for our client’s time, even proposing to postpone the call to a more suitable time if necessary. Seeing as a strong voice tone might seem aggressive and create resistance, we prefer to use an interrogative and neutral tone to handle any possible objections our client may offer. Having gained the attention of our talker, it is essential to be clear about our sales goal and structure the call in order to transmit our message in the best possible way. So in addition to making a good product explanation, we have opted to avoid long calls that might risk losing the client’s attention. Once we have reached this point, the persuasiveness and commercial techniques of each agent will play a main role. Regardless of having achieved our goal or not, we will always finish our call appreciating the time that our customer has spent with us, ending with a cordial farewell in order to leave a good memory.

Five key elements of a successful sales campaign

At Transcom Sevilla we are sales specialists and we have a vast experience in generating business for our customers. Spanning a wide array of sectors, we have developed campaigns of different sizes for various products, continuously perfecting our performance. We know that our greatest contribution to the success of any campaign is to build strong and prepared teams, for as the old saying goes: A chain is only as strong as its weakest link.

Transcom Sevilla Platform

Outbound services, sales, operations

 

Therefore, we consider the human factor to be the key lever in outbound campaigns, helping to differentiate us from our competitors. As a way to perfecting our productivity and deepening our partnership with our customers, we are continuously working on improving our employees’ performance.

Taking this into account let me explain the five key elements we focus on:

 

Key factors in ales campaigns

1.    Team building

The best project is nothing if it lacks of a good foundation. We must work very close with HR department -as they are responsible for all recruitment-, and that plays a decisive role in a campaign’s success. Information is power, and we need to be able to convey the essence of the campaign and the operation, as well as our customer’s requirements, if we want to take the first step towards success.

Also, to create good teams you need to know your employees. Knowing your team’s strengths and weaknesses will help you to assign each agent to the best location. We should not be afraid of change or of adapting the profiles we have, to the services we have to deliver.

2.    Follow-up

Once we have built a strong team, it’s time to do the training. We have an excellent trainers’ team, whom are not only very good at communicating, but also possess a deep knowledge of sales challenges. This will permit them to empathize with the agents and provide them with a greater degree of experience in the whole sales process.

When possible, we must also reinforce the campaign launch with the cooperation of veteran agents that will work side-by-side with new agents. They’ll then play a double role: On one hand, their support will help to accelerate the learning curve; on the other, they’ll act as a reference for the new hired staff.

3.    Setting goals

To be able to measure the success of any campaign, it is essential to set specific goals -achievable yet ambitious-, and to count on the whole team’s commitment to achieve them. That is why it is important to establish ongoing communication channels that allow bi-directional flow of information: from the team leader to the agents and vice verse.

Thus, it is important to have individuals and team performance reports, in order to give each team member a clear outlook on their contribution to the overall objective.

It is also important to involve the whole team in the campaign strategies. We must not forget that the qualitative feedback they can facilitate us will reinforce the quantitative information we gather from the analysis conducted in a service.

4.    Results’ analysis

In order to lead his or her team successfully, the analysis from the previous day’s results is one of the most powerful tool the team leaders have. Learning from what worked (and what didn’t) during the previous day in a campaign, can be instrumental to reacting effectively in real time, keeping track if the results have been positive or setting some new strategies to minimize negative gaps.

Therefore, the contribution of team leaders to the team is essential to achieve success. Thanks to their proximity to the agents, the team leaders are the first to detect possible deviations from the campaign’s goals, and must be able to operate the different levers at their disposal to help their team to overcome obstacles.

5.    Motivation

Outbound sales campaigns can be very stressful. Each single day the agent faces the challenge to reach a goal that in certain situations is likely to cause stress. That is why it is very important to maintain a good working environment in sales platforms. This will increase the agents work satisfaction and therefore his/her empathy and productivity. To achieve this, we must be proactive in everything regarding the motivational field, creating activities that promote friendship and teamwork that have a social impact through the platform.

At Transcom we are convinced that all the efforts we put in to each of these mentioned areas will result in improved performance, and thus, increased productivity. This is a decisive factor against our current competitors.

Author: César Mesa

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How to grow and ensure results in big sales campaigns

Big sales campaigns with an exponential growth in an already large number of agents tend to represent a huge challenge in terms of maintaining stable results due to the increase of turnover rates, which in turn impacts the final service’s outcome. Therefore it is necessary to strengthen all the variables that affect both our agents’ performance and the consolidation of their achievements in order to minimize their impact on the campaign’s results.

These have been some of the challenges that Transcom Sevilla has faced  recently, with the growth of one of our clients.

In April 2013, a leader in entertainment products, insurance and legal counseling, signed a deal with a new and important partner in Spain, in order to sell its products to their customers. To that effect, they once again trusted Transcom as leading supplier to sell their products.

With the launch of this new service, we increased our platform by 90 agents. After the first months of service and a satisfactory performance, our client requested us to continue growing, and this past September we did so, reaching a team of 200 members.

To recruit and consolidate such a big number of sales agents in the same campaign, it became necessary to apply new recruitment and training dynamics, as well as strengthening the team leader structure in order to shorten the learning curve and give further support to new hires.

To accomplish this, it became necessary for the team leaders to collaborate in the recruitment stage, supporting the interviews and the selection process. In the training stage, sales workshops were set up to reinforce agents’ sales skills and to ensure the successful identification of customer needs. At the start of the production stage, we established personal coaching for newly hired agents, guiding them towards positive call resolutions.

All actions carried out last September helped us to meet the needs of one our largest sales campaigns in Sevilla, with over 250 agents committed to our client.

We appreciate our client’s trust in Transcom, the fruit of good, solid work, and we can now focus on improving results, in order to cement our status as this client’s leading provider.

Author: César Mesa

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Shortening the learning curve

In times when our clients are looking for ways to reduce their costs, and we -as providers- are looking for ways to promote growth in our centers, can these two demands ever be achieved for both parties?

Yes, they can. At Transcom Sevilla we are working on different ways to reduce our clients’ acquisition’ costs, in order to make future requests for volume increases more attractive.

We have been working on ways to improve the sales processes as well as their quality. By analyzing the normal behavior for our biggest campaigns, we have been able to implement formulas that successfully shortens newly hired agents’ learning curve.

The intention is to quantify and explain the time it takes for an agent to acquire the necessary knowledge -for any campaign- to catch up to their more veteran colleagues’ skill. In this way, our client obtains a clear picture of the obtained results during the learning phase, making it possible to analyze how growth will be profitable for the campaign in the short, medium or long term.

With this type of logarithmic curve we can see that there is a point of maximum productivity, where any improvement in terms of process, motivation or specialization, would have a greater impact on the qualitative variables of the campaign, such as the quality of the call, improving the handling times, etc.

After this analysis we can conclude which actions have a greater impact on reducing the time to reach maximum productivity, being able to prioritize the optimal ones over many others.

At Transcom, through initiatives like this, we constantly improve the productivity of outbound sales agents, while at the same time improving the service quality and reducing our clients’ costs.