The face of every contact center, aren’t they?
An employee who answers incoming or outgoing customer calls and streamlines the customer support process is referred to as a contact center agent or a customer service representative. Call center agents have always been there throughout a customer's journey, resolving disputes, addressing complex issues, replying to questions, promoting new services, offering solutions, and ensuring satisfaction. They have such a strong role in customer experience that we can call them the face of every contact center. As their performance is closely linked to the revenue of the contact center, happy contact center agents have become a necessity for every call center.
It can be challenging to work as a contact center agent, and the job itself is known to cause substantial burnout and high levels of attrition. This often causes a detrimental impact on the company's revenue.
1. What causes contact center agents turnover?
2. Beneficial tips for inspiring your call center agents.
Every company's management is accountable for keeping its personnel motivated. Employee well-being and productivity will rise as a result of encouragement and motivation.
Even though it may seem difficult, there are a few simple strategies that can help turn a demotivated employee into a passionate, hard-working go-getter.
To foster the right attitude, you must create a welcoming, friendly, and fair environment. When considering how to motivate call center employees, the environment in which they work is critical. Agents working in your space should have a positive working environment.
Furthermore, your agents will look forward to working seriously if their workplace is filled with fun memories, which you can achieve through gamification. Gamification aims to make repetitive work tasks more enjoyable and to motivate agents to perform better.
One way to motivate your agents is to provide them with the tools and technology they need to complete their tasks. Aside from the fundamental tools, your agents will require good call center software, a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) tool, a communication tool, a chat system, and many other things.
By providing the right tools, it is possible to increase agent productivity. It is, however, easier said than done. Before deciding on the best solution for your agents and business, you must consider several important factors.
Your first step should be to remove any unnecessary or outdated tools before implementing the appropriate tools based on your team's needs and challenges.
When discussing tools, it is critical to consider how well these tools will integrate with other channels that are already in place without affecting the entire system.
Some of the contact center tools that will dramatically improve the agents’ productivity like
When agents believe that their employer cares about them and supports them, they are more likely to stay engaged. A good training program gives your agents power and makes them feel competent.
They will believe that they are progressing in their roles and that their lives are progressing. Providing the necessary training on time assists agents in maintaining their knowledge of current procedures, software, and other critical aspects of their jobs.
It all starts with learning to recognize and value your contact center agents for their minor to major achievements. If they are rewarded for their efforts, employees will put forth far more effort. Indulge in non-metric victories. One tactic is to provide certificates for accomplishments and provide forums for peer acknowledgment. Acknowledge and commemorate the significant recognition occasions. Give your agents deserved appreciation, but for the best results, make sure it's sincere, delivered in front of others, and comes from a high-level leader.
Gamification in the workplace promotes healthy competition. Gamification encourages contact center agents' sense of competition with one another. Agents can enhance productivity by using leaderboards to assess where they stand among their team members.
Agents can be trained to also promote upsell/upgrade to the customers. With proper disposition and monitoring, such actions can be recognised in the incentives. While this has direct revenue benefits for the company, such skills can be developed for further career progression of the contact center agents to customer success or sales career path.
By providing incentives and prizes to boost interest, you may directly motivate the members of your support crew. Come up with some innovative contest ideas. So give your contact center agents the chance to win prizes that will create a competitive environment and also drive learning. Like, offer them paid time off, preferred break/lunch hours, the opportunity to work from home, and the first choice of shifts. Consider surprising them with unexpected incentives. This can be an offer ticket to a most awaited game, gift cards or purchasing family tickets to a special event.
A crucial component of call center motivation and management is encouraging employees to offer feedback.
As the manager of a call center, you must also encourage each agent to give you open-and-straightforward feedback. They can offer quality control insights on how you can inspire them more effectively, things they would like you to change, etc.
Additionally, you can get their feedback on the general operations of your contact center, including customer service, goods, processes, company culture, and more.
Since they're in the thick of things, you can learn a lot from them about the most typical customer interaction problems, customer complaints, customer support suggestions, etc.
Make sure to implement their recommendations if necessary. This will encourage them to give their dedication to the team and the company by enabling them to see how they can affect decision-making at work.
Many firms frequently create KPIs and targets that are either too general or totally unachievable. Agents won't be able to help but feel baffled or defeated in either of these circumstances.
A clear and attainable goal is crucial for call center motivation. You can achieve this by setting a SMART goal:
If the manager is all gloomy, do you think the team will be active?
Hiring enthusiastic supervisors with solid team-building skills is another crucial element in maintaining contact center agents' motivation. Employees who "feel supported by their manager are around 70% less likely to experience burnout on a regular basis," according to a Gallup survey. A good manager supports corporate ideals, creates strong bonds between team members, and maintains agent motivation.
Contact center agents’ morale is significantly impacted by the work environment they are in. Employee performance in contact centers is greatly aided by a neat, uncluttered workspace with colorful furnishings, cozy chairs, a dedicated lounge area, etc. To help them feel more a part of the office, you can also encourage your staff to personalize and embellish their workstations.
If your call center is virtual or remote, you can foster a supportive workplace culture by encouraging open communication and allowing staff to interact for purposes aside from work.
Encourage the members of your contact center team to discuss how they relieve stress after a hard call. Think about introducing a breathing or guided relaxation program, providing yoga or meditation space for breaks, or all of the above. Most importantly, pay your agents for their self-investment. They will perform better, experience less stress, stay longer with your firm, and feel valued. Hold monthly wellness assessments and acknowledge advancements. Consider replacing unhealthy meals with better options or offering staff the chance to win a health care device. When necessary, provide them with the necessary leave while ensuring all health support. Customer service is notoriously difficult.
Your employees will feel secure if they have assurance and a fulfilling career. If they see a lucrative job path ahead of them, they will undoubtedly work for it. In numerous contact centers, this has shown to be one of the most effective motivating reasons.
The onboarding procedure shouldn't be the end of training. Your long-term agents also require ongoing training to update their expertise, comprehend any product updates, and sharpen the abilities that make them excellent in their jobs.
Most of your agents may become demotivated due to a lack of opportunity for ongoing learning and development, and it will affect your client relations as well.
The efficient dissemination of best practices is one benefit of socially active customer service teams. Ensure that those in need receive assistance from agents with more experience. A weekly or monthly training session will be beneficial.
As discussed above, if contact center agents have access to cutting-edge technology and are receiving efficient support, they are far more likely to feel focused and valued. Given their importance to your business, the strategies described above are the least you could do to keep them motivated. If your employees are happy it will reflect in your contact center’s performance as well. Therefore, incorporating these techniques will help you enhance the effectiveness of your contact center agents. Also, these suggestions can also strengthen the bonds within your team and foster respect amongst team leaders and agents.
In a contact center, there is always space for improvement. All you have to do is to empower and support your agents wholeheartedly. This will thus improve their confidence and help you improve your contact center’s performance.
Author Bio: Abhirami is a passionate writer whose forte is communication, possesses strong leadership qualities, and is often kind.