New evidence has revealed that agents can only handle 2 webchats before quality is compromised.
In a recent webinar on Best Practices for Voice, Email and Webchat, we asked the question of how many chats an agent could handle. The conventional wisdom is that an agent can easily handle 3 webchats or more.
But it looks like the true answer is that only 2 webchats can be handled before quality starts to be compromised.
A significant number of respondents (39%) thought that an agent could handle 3 webchats, but only 4% of the audience thought that it could be 4 or more. The sample size was 113.
It was probably best summed up by a member of our audience who said, “Our advisors are giving us advice that handling 3 webchats at the same time is pretty intense.”
Webchats are no cheaper than phone calls
All this then brings into question the old rule of thumb that “a webchat takes twice as long as a call when an agent has 3 simultaneous chats.”
This has led to the assumption that webchat is 17%-30% cheaper than a phone call. It now looks like this could be a flawed assumption.
It looks far from being 30% cheaper, as the cost of a webchat could be much more similar to the cost of a phone call.
There may be some additional cost savings possible with webchat, for instance bringing in some form of automation or outsourcing it to India or the Philippines (with webchat a foreign accent is less apparent).
The problem is that both of these savings are likely to have some impact on the service experience.
So, in many ways, webchat may be more about making life easier for customers than it is about cost reduction.
As another audience member put it, “For us the number 1 benefit of webchat is – it’s what our customers want.”
With thanks to Jonty Pearce at Call Centre Helper
Are you finding that webchat is cheaper than phone calls? Are you managing to maintain quality levels?
We’d be interested to hear your opinions in an email to Call Centre Helper