Improving Your Call Center Is an Easy Way to Improve Driver Experience

Here’s What Drivers Want from Your Call Center

The transportation industry’s shortage of drivers reached a record high in 2018 and won’t be much different this year. So thoughtful companies are asking TTN, “What can we do to increase driver retention by enhancing the experience of our drivers?”

We’re glad you asked.

First, you should know that a majority of callers are dissatisfied with call center service. How many? According to a recent study from Forrester Consulting, that number is a staggering 54%.

What do they want?

When drivers call, they want to be treated like customers. According to the same study, callers’ priorities are to talk with a skilled agent and to have their issues resolved. Here’s what they asked for, specifically:

  1. “Resolve my problem quickly.”
  2. “Answer the phone quickly.”
  3. “I want to speak with a real person.”
  4. “I want access to information about my problem.”
  5. “I want an agent based in the country I’m calling from.”
  6. “I want to be treated with respect.”
  7. “Give me multiple ways to reach out for help when I need it.”
  8. “When I call, I want the agent to have access to all my information.”
  9. “Agents should be easy to interact with.”
  10. “I want my details recognized.”
  11. “Agents should have good communication skills.”
So how can you give that to them?

The solution requires a combination of automation, technology, and human interaction.

At TTN, we begin with the human element.

Our agents are qualified, knowledgeable diesel technicians and skilled, professional communicators. No one answers the phone in our call center without first completing a rigorous training program. Our training requires not only a sophisticated understanding of the industry and equipment we’re supporting, but also of our field-tested and proven methodology for customer service.

If you’re putting just anybody on the phones, your relationships with drivers are at risk.

Next we add call center management software engineered to speed interaction and automate resolutions. The ability to answer and resolve problems quickly allows call center agents to move on to the next caller, which is important for drivers who want to feel cared about, taken care of, and important. It’s also important for our client companies, who want drivers and equipment back on the road, quickly.

Here are a few more tips for improving call center service:

Avoid Repeats. When there is a problem, drivers want to tell their story just once. They don’t want to repeat it multiple times to multiple agents.

Personal Service. It used to be that a fast response was enough. But with all the improvements in customer service that people experience elsewhere in their lives, more drivers than ever expect their experience to be personalized.

If your call center is treating drivers like case numbers rather than people, then that must stop. If your call center can’t deliver both speed and personalization, then you’re losing the battle to give drivers what they want.

Skip the Voice Response System. Voice response systems are a significant source of frustration. If you’re using one to service drivers, then you’re doing the opposite of what drivers want.

Give Consistent Answers. Your driver service methodology should include a mechanism for ensuring that drivers will receive the same answers regardless of whom they speak with in your organization. Anything else is irrational and will result in poor driver service.

If you’re in the transportation maintenance business, it’s likely that none of this information will surprise you. Yet it’s also likely that demands on your time, resources, and personnel don’t always allow you to focus on driver service the way you want to. Meeting driver expectations for call center service, though, will lead to greater retention, lower costs associated with turnover, and keep your assets on the road, more often.

Let us know if you’d like help from TTN.

Sources: TTN, Forrester Consulting, American Trucking Association