Waiting in a queue is part of everyday life whether it be at a grocery store, a government office filling out applications or paperwork, a healthcare facility or a bank or even to register for a university course. It is estimated that the average person will spend 6 months of their life waiting in a queue. Waiting can be frustrating and as organisations concern themselves with their customer experience, better managing queues has become a priority.
Queue management is focused on streamlining wait times, keeping customers engaged and moving through the process, and increasing the efficiency of the organisation. It ultimately is the process of managing queues to improve end-user waiting times and the productivity of the staff. Queue management is not a tactic but rather a long-term approach to manage how the customer experiences your service centre.
Queue management solutions are very important for any organisation or business that deals with high volumes of customers that require individual attention. The benefits of better managing your queues are:
Queues can get backed up and cause delays. These delays lead to frustrations, not only on the part of the customers who must wait in a queue but also of the employees who are tasked with assisting these people. When people get frustrated, they tend to be more difficult and service times can take longer than usual. Long wait times and backed up queues are not efficient for any oragnisation. When operations are not running smoothly or efficiently wait times in queue are increased and frustrations mount. It is a vicious cycle, but clever queue management strategies can alleviate these frustrations and increase efficiency.
• Streamline Customer Flow
Queue management is tasked with the challenge of streamlining congested waiting areas and reducing wait times. Over crowded waiting rooms with little signage of where customers should go for their required service increases the level of confusion for the visitor or customer. Confused customers only serve to muddy the waters of customer service, over inflate wait times, and frustrate themselves, the others waiting in queue, and the staff. Queue management aims to alleviate this congestion, reduce the amount of confusion a customer may feel. This not only makes the customer feel better about their overall experience, but it also ensures that they are getting the best possible service as well.
• Improving Services
It is hard to please everyone especially when they have been waiting for a long time and there is a room or line full of other people who are also waiting to be served or helped. Employees feel pressured to move quicker to make sure everyone in the queue gets helped or served. Long queues serve to amplify an employee's stress, reduce their efficiency, and effect their customer service levels. This is not ideal for an organisation. You want your employees to be fully engaged with every customer so that they can offer the highest level of service possible. When you improve the congestion of your queue, you improve your staff's ability to provide quality customer service, and do their jobs efficiently.
In today's technological modern world there are systems that can now help you manage and de-congest your queues. These systems also help engage your customers and gather quality feedback. These systems use and rely on kiosks, online scheduling, applications, and digital signage, and they make the jobs of concierges and queue managers that much easier and make them effective providers of top-tier customer service.
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