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What is an internal knowledge base for call centers?

knowledge base

70% of company executives outsourcing call centers consider agents’ product/service knowledge as the main factor for sales success and exceptional service. Typically, before launching any project, call center agents undergo training to familiarize themselves with the products and services of the client company. However, an internal knowledge base can be an additional advantage for providing exceptional customer experience.

In this material, we will explain what a call center knowledge base is, why it is important, and provide 7 examples of how a call center knowledge base improves customer service.

Internal knowledge base for call centers, what is it?

An internal knowledge base for call centers is a centralized platform for aggregating and storing documents, procedures, and resources specifically curated for use by call center agents and customer support representatives. Components of the internal knowledge base for call centers include:

  • Standard operating procedures;
  • Instructions for working with products and services;
  • Training and onboarding guides for agents;
  • Answers to frequently asked questions (FAQs);
  • Templates, scripts, and conversation scenarios with customers;
  • Internal forums and discussion groups;
  • Search system.

In other words, the internal knowledge base for call centers is an information management system that enables agents to learn, quickly find accurate answers to customer questions, and provide timely and efficient support across all communication channels.

The importance internal knowledge base for customer service

Why is having an internal knowledge base so crucial? There are several key reasons:

Consistency in customer interactions

For businesses, it’s important that every customer receives consistently excellent service across all communication channels. Imagine a company with a complex structure of departments and divisions, which has a website, its own social media channels, internal helpdesk services, and an omnichannel call center. In such a scenario, changes on the website, updates to products, services, pricing information, instructions, etc., are possible. All this information needs to be synchronized within the internal knowledge base so that agents can provide customers with accurate and up-to-date information.

This applies not only to the work of call center agents. The internal knowledge base is the source of information that appears on the website, in social media, in automated responses in voice IVR menu, chatbots, and so on. In other words, the call center’s internal knowledge base is the foundation that allows for consistently providing relevant information to customers and prevents situations where an agent has to interpret information on their own. It contributes to improving the customer experience and building trust in the company as a whole.

Quick resolution of customer issues

What happens in a call center without an internal knowledge base? The absence of a centralized source of information leads to decreased service speed, call redirection between agents, a decrease in the FCR rate, and other efficiency indicators. The call center’s internal knowledge base prevents these problems by providing agents with timely and accurate information, real-time prompts. This reduces waiting time, promotes quick issue resolution, and increases call center efficiency.

Adaptation and enhancement of call center agents’ skills

The internal knowledge base can be used to train new call center agents on the company’s products, services, and policies. It significantly reduces the time and cost of adapting new employees and enhances the skills of existing staff. All of this leads to increased agent productivity, improved work experience, reduced training costs, and ultimately, decreased employee turnover in the call center.

Exceptional customer experience

The internal knowledge base of the call center has a direct impact on customer satisfaction. Imagine receiving a prompt and thorough response to your inquiry when reaching out to customer service. This efficient assistance not only resolves your issue but also fosters loyalty to the company. Chances are, you’ll recommend it to others and be more inclined to use their products or services again. For businesses, this translates to improved metrics like Net Promoter Score (NPS) and customer retention rates. According to research by Bain & Company, even a modest 5% increase in customer retention can boost profits significantly, by 25-95%. It’s clear: implementing an internal knowledge base in the call center is a smart move for any company.

How the knowledge base improves customer service: 7 examples for call centers

Customer expectations for technical support and service in call centers continue to increase each year. To remain competitive, companies must surpass these expectations. An internal knowledge base can assist in achieving this goal.

Understanding the necessity of a call center knowledge base becomes clearer when examining examples of its operation, which result in heightened customer satisfaction.

1. Providing customers with self-service solutions

According to Forrester Research, 70% of customers expect companies to provide self-service options. With an internal knowledge base, call center operators can swiftly locate relevant instructions, guides, video tutorials, or FAQ sections and share links through the customer’s preferred communication channel. This approach boosts customer satisfaction and cuts service costs.

2. Reducing agent errors

Even the most experienced call center agents can make mistakes if the internal knowledge base isn’t regularly updated. This could mean customers receive incorrect or outdated information, which can be costly for companies. Investing in creating and updating an internal knowledge base, along with the necessary software, is crucial. The more current and relevant information customers have access to, the happier they’ll be with the contact center’s service and overall communication from the business.

3. Personalized service

A personalized approach is a strategy based on understanding the needs, interests, and preferences of customers. When the internal knowledge base is integrated into the call center CRM, it opens up broad opportunities for service personalization. With the customer interaction history, call center agents can provide personalized recommendations and advice, using prompts from the knowledge base.

4. Improving First Call Resolution

The importance of the FCR metric is growing due to market competition and higher customer service expectations. Resolving customer issues successfully on the first contact can boost customer satisfaction, minimize losses, and bolster the company’s reputation.

It’s worth noting that achieving a higher FCR rate requires maintaining consistency and accuracy in the information provided to customers. In this regard, an internal knowledge base that receives regular updates and expansions is pivotal for success.

5. Increasing sales

An internal knowledge base is a potent tool that significantly boosts the effectiveness of the telemarketing department within a call center. It should encompass details on products, services, competitors, pricing, promotions, and other vital information. For instance, it equips sales agents with comprehensive descriptions of new products or services, highlighting their features, advantages, disadvantages, and comparisons with competitors’ offerings. Access to current information empowers sales managers to deliver more compelling presentations of products and services, thereby driving up call center conversion rate.

Moreover, the knowledge base can provide templates for cold call scripts, aiding sales agents in engaging potential customers effectively and maximizing upselling and cross-selling opportunities.

6. Data-driven decision making

Examining usage patterns within the knowledge base offers valuable insights into common challenges encountered by both call center agents and customers. This data empowers organizations to make informed decisions, ultimately enhancing overall service quality. For instance, if agents frequently search for specific information in the database, it could indicate its significance to customers, highlighting the need to make it more accessible on the company’s website for self-resolution of issues.

Analyzing search queries within the internal knowledge base can reveal important details about customer needs, pain points, and emerging trends. By tracking the frequency and types of search queries, call center managers can pinpoint recurring issues and areas requiring additional training or resources. Consequently, data-driven decisions based on knowledge base analysis simultaneously elevate both employee experience (EX) and customer experience (CX).

7. Adaptability to call center workload

The internal knowledge base enables the call center to handle a higher volume of clients without raising costs. During busy periods, it’s essential for agents to have standardized response scripts or step-by-step instructions readily available for resolving common issues. This speeds up query processing, cuts down customer wait times in queues, ensures top-notch service quality, and lowers the chance of errors during peak call center demand.

Internal knowledge base for call centers: conclusions

In summary, it’s important to highlight that the internal knowledge base for call centers offers maximum benefits under specific conditions. Firstly, it should be user-friendly and easy to navigate, featuring an intuitive dashboard, flexible search options with tags, contextual recommendation widgets, and notifications for content updates.

Secondly, integrating the knowledge base with other call center systems such as CRM, chat center, telephony, Service Desk, chatbots, and company websites is essential. Regular updates to the knowledge base are also critical.

Under these circumstances, the internal knowledge base for call centers becomes a potent tool for driving transformative changes in customer service.

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Фахівець з маркетингу компанії Global Bilgi
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