The Call Center, Unplugged

I’ve worked in call centers and done phone support for a decade. Ten years of sitting in front of a computer, often with a complicated phone system with several lines and options, waiting for a tone to tell me when my next customer is coming on the line. This has always been the way it works.

Zendesk just changed thator at least opened up a possibility that’s gotten me thinking a ton about the nature of call centers, support in general, and work in the abstract.

It’s a ridiculously simple option inside your channels menu. In Settings > Channels > Voice, on the General Settings tab, you’ll see an innocuous radio button labeled Agent wrap-up after calls.

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The ability to turn this off does something new. Combined with the ability to forward agent calls to a cell phone, you no longer need to be tied to your computer to receive and handle support calls. You are now free to roam about as you please, like a nomadic support champion, answering your customers’ questions anywhere, any time.

Previously, because of the agent wrap-up state, it was necessary to click a button on your computer when you finished a call, signaling that you were ready for the next call. If you were away from you desk, answering calls on your cell, you wouldn’t be able to receive a second call. You would stay in the wrap-up state, with no ability to click the button on your computer and move beyond it. By turning that feature off, all you need is a cell phone and you can remain active and available anywhere you like. 

This is probably the simplest tip of the week I’ve ever written, with no technical details to explain—just flip a switch and suddenly your call center transforms into a distributed web of individuals who can communicate without boundaries. Consider it a possibility of the week… Take a call in your hotel, take a call in a cab, take a call on a beach, or in a park.

Zendesk just unplugged your call center. Get in touch with ours any day, any time. Reach us at support@zendesk.com, or give us a call at 888-670-4887.

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Comments

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    Andrey Sarapulov

    Very nice. I never think about such a small thing like pressing a button to accept the next call. Thanks Max for sharing your experience.

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