Question: How do you balance high- and low-tech tools in your service center?

Answers from frontline reps —

A riddle and a smile. In our service center, some of our representatives are multi-skilled. The majority are phone-only, however some work with our eMessage system, sending secure messages to our members. Others are expert in our chat skill. These representatives are vital to the success of our organization, as members frequently use methods other than phoning our contact center.

We also use a variety of tools to complete our daily tasks, however, sometimes it’s the low-tech tools that are the most useful or meaningful. One of these is a dry erase board and markers – most of our supervisors have these outside their desks. These are helpful in communicating the day’s schedule, but sometimes we have a little bit of fun by posting a riddle or funny fact to help brighten the days of those passing by. Little touches like these can boost our team’s mood and add to the overall quality of work each day. 
Stacy Evers, Navy Federal Credit Union

Checklists always important. In our small service department, one person may handle inquires through our website, different avenues of social media, direct phone calls, and emails.

And for day-to-day productivity we are huge fans of to-do lists. In our operations, we call them “Focus Lists.” We write down the activities of the day and then a few goals that we want to work on or accomplish. Whether you write your list on an 8-1/2” x 11” piece of paper or a post-it note, lists can keep you focused throughout the day. For additional fun and a bit of a laugh, start your list off with “Make a To-Do List.” That way, when you’re done making your list, you can already check something off.
Megann Wither, Doc’s Doggie Day Care

Notebooks and pens. The City of Berkeley serves community members in person, by phone, email, on-line web page, mobile-SeeClickFix and mail or fax.

The Finance Customer Service Center handles in-person and mail correspondence. The 311 Customer Service Call Center handles all other communication and staff are assigned specific channels, as well as handling phones. All staff have half an hour without phones at the beginning and end of their workday to work on other contact channels. Often email, VM, web, and mobile cases are completed between calls.

Despite all of our technology, a notebook and pen are at every desk. It is like an old friend and the staff feel more comfortable having it as a tool.
Kathy Cassidy, City of Berkley, CA

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