Call centers today face severe attrition. In fact studies done by agencies like the QATC in US show that the average annual turnover rate for agents in contact center ranges from 30% to 45%. High turnover and reduced tenure at contact centers mean high costs for recruiting and training, lost employee productivity and diminished morale at the workplace. The low morale of agents also result in decreased customer satisfaction and increased customer grievances with below par agent behaviour.
It can be debated that agents are the torchbearer of customer service. Problems or reduced agent motivation can topple down a carefully created and structured customer experience strategy of a company. Lets explore the top reasons of agent attrition in a call center.
Most of the times the call center agents are entry-level employees. They need continuous training not just on how to handle customers but also on how to use technology. An absence of training may force agents to leave.
Performing repetitive tasks with nothing new to learn and no new challenges can wear out the agents. Rotating agents among different departments or across different channels will help them hone their skills and keep them refreshed. Repetitive tasks are the major reason of agent attrition.
While every call center has basic infrastructure for dialling out and receiving calls. Not having the tools integrated, or making agents login and logout of different tools to handle one call can get extremely frustrating for agents. The objective of a successful call center management personnel should be to reduce agent clicks or to provide them one-click solutions.
Lack of flexibility in agent work time or load management is the next most important factor that forces agents to leave their contact center jobs. It is also a factor that is becoming a great concern with long commuting time due to heavy traffic, multiple roles a person plays and flexibility that is expected today from a job.
While technology is not the panacea of all the problems but is a strong enabler to provide a long term solution for agent attrition and better agent morale. Let us look at top reasons of attrition and how technology can solve it.
It is a mobile based call center application that works on mobile and help agents make and receive calls from their mobile devices while giving them the flexibility of mobility. With a mobile call center software an agent may be anywhere in the world and complete their jobs with an internet connection. This provides flexibility to call center agents and helps them manage their work life balance in a much better way. This enables call center agents to work for limited time and utilise the rest of the time in their own way.
This by far is the best saviour for agents as it provides lot of empowerment to agent about all the interactions a customer had with the business. Loaded with this information, agents can provide faster resolution and without getting really burnout! And as we mentioned, without ever moving to multiple different screens.
This is the best tool to manage the repetitive jobs. Statistically, 40%-45% of the query is very similar and repetitive. And this is what is best done by AI powered Chatbots. This not only liberates the agent from doing repetitive jobs but also makes her available for the more challenging task that can help her learn new process or skills. While Chatbots eliminates the boredom of the agent, it keeps them more motivated as they spend time in more exciting work.
The ubiquitous smartphone has spurred the popularity of video chat as a new way of offering services to the customers. The smartphones make video chatting very easy and convenient which in turn has resulted in the rapid rise of video chats as an option for customer service. The greatest benefit of video chat is that it provides a face to face live interaction with a real human being that too from the comfort of one’s own home. This face to face interaction offers a much more personal experience to the customers and enhances their level of satisfaction which in turn can lead to a more meaningful relationship with the brand. Therefore, video chat is a new and refreshing way for the businesses for initiating real communication which is a clear revolution in call centre management. For new gen agents this is very exciting as it brings newness in the way they engage with customer and can quickly understand their concern.
New age contact centers are having an integrated agent gamification system which allows the agent to learn new skills through byte size content and also get rewarded for better outcomes. This takes into account the much needed continuous training for the new joiners as well as it provides revision in case it is required. In some gamification tools, it allows the agent to contribute to the knowledge base. Such contributions can also be rewarded and keep them motivated. With gamification comes the leader board which displays the best performers and creates a healthy competition in the team. The team which learns together, stays together.
Keeping a motivated customer service team is key for better customer experience. While it is essential that the agents are thoroughly trained on the business offerings and also trained in customer handling and empathy. But the right set of tools and technology goes a long way in achieving the objective of a motivated and engaged team.
Author Bio: Akanksha