More than ever, the internet and phones are the “new” showroom, making your BDC a conduit to your bricks-and-mortar store. Increasingly, agents have the critical role of converting online shoppers into showroom appointments. Is your BDC manager up to the task of properly training, motivating, and incentivizing agents to maximize opportunities?
Highly successful BDC managers understand the importance of their role and cultivate habits that push their agents to succeed. Here’s how they do it.
Lead by example
The best BDC managers create a picture of what’s expected through their own behavior. They are on time or early every day. They are smiling and ready to greet their teams. They know how to properly and consistently use call-handling software and the CRM. They are experts at every type of phone script and have extensive product knowledge. They make it easy for agents to follow their example.
Get the metrics that matter
BDC managers start the workday with an operational review. They pull, read, and interpret lead reports. They review metrics for dials-per-day, contacts, set appointments, shows, and sold, against each agent’s performance. They have a training plan for under-performing agents and incentives (gift cards, cash bonuses, etc.) for those hitting it out of the park.
Rally the troops
The best managers start each day with a quick 10-minute stand-up meeting. Content varies but can include listening to a great call and discussing what went well. Or, listening to a poor call and discussing what could have gone better. Effective managers don’t hog the stage. The BDC manager may ask an agent to talk about a strategy that’s helping them convert calls into appointments. Or, encourage agents to share struggles and brainstorm remedies.
Work with other departments
If you’re marketing sales specials, OEM incentives, or service campaigns to customers, BDC agents need to know the details. The best BDC managers know this and ask for weekly meetings with the sales and service managers to get up-to-date. Customers will call for more information about deals. Ensuring agents are prepared to answer questions is one hallmark of a good manager.
|Related: Why your BDC department should focus on developing strong customer connections in 2021 – Sarah Vantine, Scott Clark Auto|
The job of a BDC agent is not easy. It’s alternately very boring and very stressful. Couple that with relatively low pay, and it’s easier to see how the agent turnover rate is between 30 to 45 percent. That’s a lot of coming and going, and wasted time and money spent on training. The best BDC managers can significantly cut that churn with tactics that encourage camaraderie and pride in a job well done. They have contests and rewards to motivate agents to perform above benchmark. For example, a contest could task agents to work together to book 10 additional appointments over an established standard for the day, with a $20 gift card for everyone if the group meets the goal. Another way to encourage camaraderie is through a mentoring program where more established agents earn bonuses for taking greener employees under their wings.
There are many things a BDC manager can do to be highly effective and push agents to succeed. These top five habits are a great place to start and will help your BDC increase productivity and ROI while slowing employee churn.
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