Corporate Standards: 18 Signs of Cold Calling

Corporate Standards = Speech Scripts + Application Notes

In the first part of this article, which describes 16 scripts for blocking cold calls, I wrote about the need for instructions for using speech scripts. I will not quote the instructions for working with cold calls word for word – I will describe the basic principles, signs of cold calls, and basic scripts for refusing and ending a call.

Accept or not accept cold calls

The management of the company determines how cold calls are handled. If there are employees whose job is to consider offers from counterparties on the procedure for purchasing goods or services, and they are ready to accept such offers by phone, then cold calls will be forwarded to them.

If cold calls are undesirable and interfere with the normal work of managers and specialists, then they can be blocked. By default, all offers of goods and services that have not been requested from counterparties are accepted by email. The secretariat staff is responsible for receiving calls, sorting, and forwarding commercial offers to employees.

How to identify cold calls

Cold calls can be identified by the following indicators:

  • Sign 1. The caller asks to immediately connect with the director or another manager, department, calling not a name, but a position.
  • Sign 2. The caller asks whom he can contact regarding purchases, sales, discussions, etc.
  • Sign 3. The caller seeks to find out the name, position, phone number of the person who decides to purchase goods/purchase services.
  • Sign 4. The caller vaguely formulates the purpose of the call, avoiding an unambiguous answer to the question about the purpose of the call.
  • Sign 5. The caller seeks to establish personal contact with the secretary by addressing by name, asking questions, and avoiding answering the secretary’s questions.
  • Sign 6. The caller states that he needs to speak in person or meet with a manager.
  • Sign 7. The caller claims that he does not offer anything, but just wants to “discuss”, ask a few questions.
  • Sign 8. The caller gives the wrong name of the person he is calling, and when asked to clarify, he apologizes and admits that he probably confused the name.
  • Sign 9. The caller says that he forgot the name of the employee with whom to connect and asks to remind him.
  • Sign 10. The caller states that it is not up to the secretary to decide whether the company needs the goods/services offered.
  • Sign 11. The caller asks to connect with the right person, referring to the urgency and importance of the call.
  • Sign 12. The caller tries to introduce himself as “his”, refuses to officially introduce himself.
  • Sign 13. The caller seeks to evade sending a written proposal under various pretexts.
  • Sign 14. The caller refuses to leave a message and his data for the subscriber and requires a connection for a private conversation.
  • Sign 15. The caller asks for a contact phone number, referring to the fact that the necessary data has disappeared in the base/phone, and he cannot remember the name and phone number of the contact person.
  • Sign 16. The caller claims that he has an unanswered call from a company employee and asks to either immediately connect to the subscriber or provide contact information.
  • Sign 17. The caller seeks to show that they have a special relationship with the person they want to contact.
  • Sign 18. The caller seeks to control the progress of the conversation, not accepting the refusal and preventing the end of the conversation until the desired information or connection with the desired subscriber is received.

Guide to Cold Calling

How to block unwanted cold calls

Strictly follow the rules for conducting telephone conversations, which provide for the collection of information about the caller, the purpose of the call, and the coordination of the connection. Control the duration of a telephone conversation, preventing the caller from intercepting control over the conversation and violating the established rules for conducting telephone conversations.

Do not provide callers with the names, titles, and phone numbers of company employees if cold calling to these employees is undesirable. Refuse the caller to connect to the subscriber of interest, referring to the company’s rules and regulations.

It is polite to end the conversation, in some cases to terminate the connection without waiting for the last reply of the caller, if the caller seeks to continue the conversation without accepting the refusal to provide the necessary information and connect with the subscriber of interest. Apply basic and extended scripts of telephone conversations as appropriate.

Basic scripts to refuse connection

Refusal to provide contact information and/or connection should sound as follows.

“Sorry, I cannot connect you. According to the rules of our company, all proposals are accepted by e-mail, in case of a positive result, our specialist will contact you “.

“Unfortunately, I cannot connect you with anyone. We consider all proposals in writing only. You can send your proposal by email. If our specialists are interested in it, they will contact you.”

“Sorry, I cannot connect you with any of the employees, as our company has established a regulation according to which all proposals are considered only in writing, and responses to them are sent by e-mail.”

“Sorry, we do not give this information over the phone. Your proposal has been forwarded to a specialist, he will contact you if he finds it interesting.”

Sorry, we do not provide this information over the phone. Please, leave your details, I will tell you that you called.

“I’m sorry, but we do not answer proposals that did not interest us. If your offer interests our specialists, they will contact you.”

“I am empowered to distribute information among employees, perhaps not the director can help you, but one of our specialized departments dealing with such issues, send your suggestions/request/question, if you are interested, they will answer you. I am sorry that I cannot immediately connect you with the director, but these are the rules established in the company. Thank you for your call, goodbye.”

Basic script to end the conversation

Any disputes, questions, remarks about whether there are other ways to contact, attempts to challenge the rules and regulations referred to by the secretary, are stopped with one phrase ending the conversation.

“Unfortunately, I can’t help you with anything else – these are the rules established in our company. Good day, thanks for calling. Goodbye.”

Headcount calculation using a calculator from HR-PRACTICE

The headcount calculator allows

  • define the scope of work for which the headcount calculation will be performed;
  • define the time norms for performing individual operations;
  • take into account the loss of working time and the absenteeism rate when calculating the number of employees;
  • estimate the actual workload of employees at the current workload and the available number and staff;
  • calculate the number of employees required to complete a certain amount of work (target number);
  • compare target numbers with actual numbers to see if there is a need to change numbers or staffing.

For those who want to correctly calculate the number of staff

To get started – read the article on 12 principles of calculating the number – this will allow you to avoid errors when collecting data and setting up the calculator. I respect those who fundamentally do not read the instructions, but agree that the cost of an error in calculating the number may be too high.

How to use the headcount calculator

  • First, enter into the calculator all types of operations/work performed by an employee or employees of the unit. In order not to lose anything, group them by work blocks/business processes.
  • For each type of work, determine the rate of time and the frequency of this work (quantity per shift/day/week/month/year). The norm is determined either by the method of expert evaluation according to the formula HB = (3 * Tmin + 2Tmax)/5, where Tmin is the minimum time for operating, Tmax is the maximum time for performing the operation, or using timing.
  • Multiplying the time rate by the frequency of work/operations in the selected period (shift, day, week, month, year), you get the volume of work per month, calculated in hours.
  • Taking into account the mode, work schedule breaks, and losses of working time, determine the productive working time (in man-hours) per shift/day.
  • Divide the amount of work in hours summed up for all operations by the time in man/hours – you get a headcount calculation.
  • Analyze the calculation data, check the correctness of the data you used.

Калькулятор для расчета численности

How the headcount calculator works

This is a simple five-sheet MS Excel file. Two of them are used to enter data, two are used to configure the calculator, one is used to display the received data. Especially for those who are afraid of messing up something, the cells where you need to enter data are locked.

How to customize the calculator

Open the “Established positions” sheet and enter the positions in them, the number and workload of which we will calculate.

Then open the “Frequency” sheet and add the necessary data to it, if the available characteristics of the frequency of operations/jobs are not enough for you.

How to enter data for headcount calculation

Pay attention to the color-coding of the cells of the sheets for data entry – you need to enter data in the fields without brown filling. Open the “Job Description” sheet, select from the drop-down list the position that performs a certain operation.

If the same work is performed by employees in different positions, this means that there are flaws in the organization of work, the principle of division of labor is not implemented. It is allowed to replace employees who are absent from work on weekends or the possibility of duplicating their functions in case of employment in other jobs or, if necessary, to complete a larger volume of work than usual at a time.

In the next field, specify the business process/block of work. Then specify the operation, its duration (maximum/minimum), select from the drop-down list the appropriate parameter for the frequency of the operation to be performed, indicate the frequency of the operation itself and the number of workers required to complete it.

After you have figured out the scope of work, go to the “Working hours” sheet. Everything should be intuitive on it, special attention should be paid to the red column “Loss”.

It introduces the total time of loss of working time – the time for “switching” from one type of work to another, losses due to ineffective organization of work, due to uneven workload (for example, at first there are no buyers, and then the influx), technological breaks (you need to wait for the completion of some work, then start others), time for urgent and unscheduled tasks, losses due to violations of labor discipline, etc.

How headcount calculation looks like

The data you enter allows you to calculate the target headcount and workload for a given amount of work and compare it with the actual headcount.

Do not forget about the principles of calculating the number. All calculations were made following them. If the calculator’s algorithms suddenly fail, a cell with the amount of “lost” hours highlighted in red will appear to the right of the “Check” label.

What difficulties can you face in preparing data for calculating the headcount

Often, when standardizing operations, the maximum execution time is several times longer than the minimum. This happens when the name of one operation hides several operations that differ in content and scope of work.

Here is an example, when I had to “split” the operation “shipment of goods” lasting from 5 to 40 minutes into two:

  • “shipment of goods under an invoice with a small number of items of goods” – 5-10 minutes
  • “shipment of goods under an invoice with a large number of items of goods” – 30-40 minutes.

If the duration of an operation is long (several hours or several days), it is necessary to clarify its content and split it into several operations, or, if it is difficult, split it into several suboperations with a fixed step by duration or number of operations.

Headcount modelling. Optimisation tool | Deloitte CIS | Operations

Additional functions and limitations of the calculator

In addition to basic algorithms, the calculator can use headcount drivers – quantitative indicators of the amount of work that indirectly determine the workload of employees. For example, the number of store visitors or the average daily number of receipts. Besides, using the calculator, you can determine the optimal position of the department.

About restrictions. Of course, the price for the calculator’s simplicity is the risk of inaccurate calculations. If you need high accuracy of calculations, it may be worth using other methods and tools.

In conclusion

I hope that the description of simple algorithms for calculating the number will be useful to you in solving applied problems.

How the market value of a job seeker or employee is calculated

Is there an objective criterion for measuring the market value of employees and applicants

If we consider the keyword “market”, then it exists. Cost is determined by the ratio of supply and demand. The market value of a job seeker or employee is the average wage that employers offer in the labor market to someone with similar experience, knowledge, and skills.

Why is the market value of a job seeker or employee calculated

The market demand for specialists of a certain specialty or qualification is the objective reality that employers, job seekers, and employees can refer to when negotiating wages.

If you do not seek to bargain more, but agree on a fair amount of remuneration, you need to justify your position in the negotiations. For the salary paid to the employee to be competitive and the offer for the jobseekers to be attractive, it is worth understanding what the “price order” is in the labor market.

Pricing Logic

Different for all market participants – employers, job seekers, and employees. Some employers are ready to pay as much as “it is not a pity”, someone is ready to pay “more than anyone else”, counting on the direct dependence of the employee’s performance on the amount of salary.

Someone is fighting to improve the profitability of the business, carefully assessing the share of personnel costs in their costs and calibrating their proposal, someone is doing so well that he can pay his employees “above the market”. As for the requests of applicants and employees, they are often not related to the ratio of supply and demand in the labor market.

The desire to earn no less than at the previous place of work or the employee’s assessment of the results of work in the company as the basis for a 20-50% increase in wages is quite understandable and understandable, as are other personal motives that determine the needs of everyone who works for hire.

Firsthand lessons learned rebounding from a job layoff (essay)

How to calculate the market value of an employee or job seeker

If you have read the article about the Salary Calculator, then remember that to calculate the market value of a position, you need a sample of vacancies with a job content close to what you indicate for your position and/or with the same requirements for job seekers as your company.

The point is to understand how much is offered on the labor market for a certain job, or how much is offered to someone who can do it. The approach to assessing an applicant or employee is different. To understand what kind of salary he can count on, you need to make a sample from the vacancies on the market, guided by the criterion of matching experience, knowledge, skills, etc. employers’ requirements. By collecting a sample of “suitable” vacancies, you can calculate the amount that a job seeker or employee can count on if he is ready to enter the labor market.

How to take into account and calculate everything – a step-by-step algorithm with examples

Step 1

Determine the list of positions that the applicant/employee can apply for, taking into account the existing knowledge, skills, experience, and other data.

Step 2

For each of the selected positions, create an array of available vacancies. Choose only those vacancies for which the applicant or employee could apply, taking into account the content of the work and the requirements of the employer.

Example:

You have been working as a designer for many years without any special education. Analyzing the market, and you see that most design jobs are not available to you – many employers require an art education.

There are few vacancies without such requirements and wages are low. What to do? Study the market – look for other positions/specialties where your knowledge, skills, and experience will be in demand and worthy of compensation.

For this example, for professionals who own both graphics packages and 3DMax, employers offer higher wages than “regular” designers. And do not require art education from them.

Workplace Culture | Monster.com

Step 3

Critically evaluate the selection of vacancies.

Example:

Let you be a mega-experienced programmer-developer for about 30 years. You like programming and don’t really like to lead – you want to program and be responsible only for yourself. Formally, all the vacancies of ordinary programmers are available to you – you can do any job, you meet the requirements 100%.

If it is sensible to assess your chances of taking up the vacancy of an ordinary programmer, then they are low – you may prefer a specialist whose qualifications and requests correspond to the work tasks and the proposed level of remuneration.

Therefore, in reality, only vacancies of ordinary programmers with complex tasks or vacancies of team leaders are available to you, where your experience and qualifications will be in demand. By the way, maybe it’s time for you to become a team leader or boss

Step 4

You make allowances for the unspoken requirements and expectations of employers.

Example:

Employers rarely hire male accountants. Reaching a certain age or “the wrong gender” makes finding a job challenging for certain jobs and occupations. This also needs to be taken into account by studying job descriptions and choosing from their array those that are available to you.

Step 5

You process the array using the Salary Calculator or manually to figure out which offer on the labor market is considered average.

Step 6

If you are an applicant and the amount received upset you – go back to Step 1 – look for an area in which you can earn the desired amount. If you are an employer, think about how you will use the information received when negotiating with an employee.