What is call deflection?

Call deflection is a technique used to redirect a portion of your incoming customer service calls to digital support channels in order to reduce the burden on your call center employees.

This has benefits for both your customers and your team, helping to alleviate high volumes of calls while allowing customers to reach a solution faster.

What does call deflection mean?

Research shows giving customers the option of digital support can reduce call center call volumes and operating expenses by as much as 25-30%. Those figures are hard to ignore.

At the same time, long customer service hold times lead to lower customer satisfaction (CSAT) and net promoter scores (NPS) and decreased customer loyalty.

By lowering call volume, you should also benefit your employees. Good call deflection tools will improve your first contact resolution rate and minimize the barrage of repetitive calls your call center receives, ultimately reducing agent fatigue and burnout. 

With satisfied customers and a more manageable workload, your employees will stand to be more content with your business and more equipped to perform at their jobs.

Which solutions can be used to improve call deflection?

Call center deflection helps diminish customer frustration by giving them a choice in how they resolve their issues. 

For example, when customers call your customer service line, they could hear a message encouraging them to email or text your support team. In the same message, you could also recommend customers visit your website where they can chat in real time with support agents or take advantage of self-service resources like an automated assistant, an FAQ page, or a community forum.

“In some cases, call deflection can also add to customer safety”

By leveraging your digital channels and automating elements of your customer service, you can help more customers resolve their issues faster.

In some cases, call deflection can also add to customer safety – for example, when sharing payment information digitally rather than over the phone.

Many companies are turning to automated solutions, such as chatbots, to assist in these efforts. “Chat deflection,” for instance, involves programming chatbots to recognize when a customer needs assistance and initiate first contact before the customer picks up the phone to contact the call center. The chatbots then direct the customers to self-service resources such as an FAQ page or forum where they can find the answer to their inquiry. 

Digital support channels typically cost far less than traditional phone-based channels. They also provide more immediate and consistent answers to customer questions and help you empower your customers to find answers themselves.