Help Desk 101: Keeping Customers Happy While Managing Conflicting Expectations and Performance Goals

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As products become more specialized, businesses get more competitive, and customers become more demanding, it is more difficult to attract those customers. In response, many companies are beginning to realize that customers are not an endlessly renewable resource. With this in mind, many businesses are turning their attentions inward to look for ways to keep their existing customers. They are putting more emphasis on call centers and help desks to provide ongoing support and services. As any person who has walked into a dedicated call center can tell you, they are big businesses these days, and growing bigger all the time. Companies are spending large amounts of money to engineer and install specialized hardware and software to support the demands put on call centers. For example, automated call distributors route inbound calls to a waiting agent so that a caller has to spend a minimum of time on hold, and voice processing systems (those ubiquitous numbered lists of options) are designed to allow a caller to find services quickly, without requiring a human switchboard operator.