Telemarketing's Labor Puzzle (1,501 words)
Make the most of the community groups that you have found your best reps to be affiliated with. Many local organizations have placement offices or job hotlines. Take the time to establish good relationships with their key contacts and give them positive feedback about the recruits who work out well for you. Work with these organizations to post recruitment signs and print hiring notices in their publications or flyers.
Whatever method you use to spread the word about your call center position, be sure to ask potential applicants to call your company so you can screen them by telephone first. It's the quickest and best way to tell what kind of impression they will make over the phone with your customers. If you'll be handling these calls live, make sure you identify and train recruiters who have proven that they can pick out the winners and sell the position, the company and the next steps in the process (faxing in a resume or coming in for an interview). If you can't take the calls live, use a dedicated voice mail line to screen out the best applicants for a return phone call and interview.
Investments in innovative recruitment advertising, processes and screening staff always pay off in the long run because you start off with the highest possible raw materials—-the on-phone talent that will drive your success from that point forward. It's amazing how much time and money companies waste trying to motivate phone reps who do not have the skills or aptitude for the job.
Since most upper management usually needs convincing on this point, closely track and quantify your recruitment, initial training and retention strategies. How much does it really cost to attract, screen and train staff? How long does it take to get them up to speed? How long, on average, do reps stay in the position? Within high-volume outbound sales environments, for example, some managers have found that recruits who make it through training are most likely to leave a call center at the three- week and three-month marks.