You might need to transfer calls if you work as a receptionist in a call center or are a call center operator.
Although most callers can easily be cold transferred, there may be times when warmly transferring a caller is necessary to not only resolve the caller's issue but also to ensure the best customer experience.
What is a warm exchange?
Warm transfers allow the initial agent to forward a caller to another representative while having a conversation first with the new agent. After the initial greeting, the caller will be placed on hold and the initial receptionist will call the appropriate agent to speak directly with them. The caller should provide valuable information to the new representative such as their name, background, and needs.
The original employee will usually speak with the caller once more to inform them that the requested agent is on the line. After the transfer is complete, the original representative will introduce the caller and then drop the line. The new representative will handle the remainder of the call.
What's the difference between a warm and cold transfer?
A warm transfer is one of the many types of transfers. Warm transfers are often viewed as more polite than cold transfers because they allow the caller not to repeat information that has already been given.
Cold transfers are when the agent transfers the caller to another agent without first speaking with the customer. Cold transferring a phone call is a preferred method for transferring a caller in most cases. Here are some examples of cold-transferring a caller:
- A caller may be routed to the wrong department if they are not qualified.
- A basic question does not require specific information.
- Callers may request to leave a voicemail message to a particular representative if they call.
To set expectations, it is important to inform the caller that you are transferring them to another department. It's not possible to guarantee that callers will reach their destination, unlike a warm transfer. In such cases, it is best to inform them to leave a message.
When is it appropriate to warm-transfer a caller?
Some calls and interactions do not require warm transfers. Many callers simply need a cold transfer to get to the correct department or representative. There are some situations when a warm transfer may be the best idea and the best thing for the caller. These are some examples:
- Escalation calls
- Emotional calling
- Sensitive calls
- Aggressive calls (these should warm transferred to a manager)
- Calls in which the caller has called several times but not been answered
It is crucial that each caller feels heard, understood, and that their situation is being dealt with appropriately in all of these situations. These types of calls can cause frustration and anger, as well as annoyance.
What should you say to warm transfer a call?
Warmly transferring calls to callers is a good way to show empathy, even if they are not the right person to solve their problem. Active listening and the right customer service voice can help you do this. Let them know that you can't help them all and will transfer them to someone who can.
You should also let them know you will be speaking with another representative before you transfer them to discuss their case. This will make it easier for the caller, and reduce frustration, even if there is a longer wait time. This is an example of a warm transfer:
To the caller "I'm sorry to hear about XYZ. Angela, my colleague, would be the best person for you to help with this issue at this moment. Let me send you to them. Before I do, I will tell them that you are calling for help with XYZ.
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To your colleague "Hello, Angela!" I have one of your claimants on the backline. They are calling from XYZ. They will be informed that I'm transferring them directly to you.
To the caller "Thank you so much, [First Name] Angela is on the phone, and I will be transferring you immediately.
You can reassure callers that they will be taken care of and increase their confidence in your ability to solve their problems. To ease the tensions of callers who are receiving warm transfers, make sure you answer the phone.
If you need to transfer the call to voicemail
Warm transfer calls involve the first representative making the call and transferring it to the second after a brief introduction. Sometimes, however, the second representative may instruct you to transfer the caller to the next person after a brief introduction. In these cases, the call will be transferred to voicemail. This can be due to:
- The second representative is currently working on another case
- The second representative is currently examining the case of the caller
- The second representative is active on another call
Even though this may not be what the caller is looking for, there are still ways to make it a pleasant experience. This interaction is an example:
To the caller "I'm sorry to hear about XYZ. Angela, my colleague, would be the best person for you at this moment. Let me contact them to see if they can help you.
To your colleague "Hello, Angela!" I have one of your claimants on the backline. They are calling from XYZ and their name is [First Name, LastName].
From your colleague "Hi! Right now, I am finishing paperwork for another claimant. Could you please transfer [First name] to my voicemail, and let them know I will return your call as soon as possible?
To the caller "Thank you so much, [First Name]" Angela was on the phone with me. She's currently working on paperwork for another claimant, but I can transfer your call to her voicemail. Angela assured me that she would contact you as soon as possible.
The customer experience is made easier, more efficient, and less frustrating by warm transfers. They can reach the person they want to talk to without repeating themselves or being rerouted by mistake.
Agents will find warm transfers easier. They help ensure that callers are transferred to the right person or department. This eliminates the need to make multiple transfers.
Warm transfers also help representatives prepare for the caller's needs because they have a better understanding of the situation. This allows for quicker resolutions and faster answers, which reduces average handling times.
Warm transferring a caller is not only beneficial for the above reasons but also offers other benefits:
- Increase in first-call resolutions
- Higher customer satisfaction rates
- Increased productivity between the representative and caller
- Increase in personal relationships with customers
How technology today can help
Call transfers were difficult in the past due to outdated phone systems. You could be disconnected from calls or have confusion when making transfers.
The ease of calling has improved dramatically thanks to calling technology. It can now be done on a computer screen, not on a phone. Employees can now select from a list of extensions and departments or type an extension on a virtual keyboard, which allows them to transfer calls seamlessly.
A 24/7 virtual receptionist is available to help you transfer calls. This gives you exceptional Voice Text based customer service even before they speak with you.
In certain cases, warmly transferring a caller to your company is the best thing for both you and the caller. Warm transfers are necessary for calls that are emotionally charged or escalated. This will help to de-escalate any further issues and help the next representative to best assist the caller. Contact Smith.ai for more information about warm transfers software assistance.