23 February 2023
Invest in your Current Agents
Here are some tips of the best ways to progress with customer service within your contact center environments:
As many agents are on a rotational basis: working from home and in the office, they are probably feeling incredibly overwhelmed and are asked to manage more and more support requests every day, resulting in them feeling acute stress.
With this in mind, find out what motivates and influences your agent’s day-to-day.
Those 1-on-1s with their team leaders are so important to:
- Be authentic and open in your approach and build trust and value.
- Demonstrate your empathy by focusing on listening and not telling.
- Build a personal relationship with each agent and get to know them better.
- Find out what do they enjoy or dislike about their work?
- Ask how could their role be improved to make them more engaged?
- To uncover the aspects of the job that are important to your agents and allow you to respond more empathetically during times of uncertainty.
- Consider the variability in the work your agents do. How many inquiries does each agent handle in a day? How many are repetitive versus complex? What’s the level of urgency across them?
- How are they dealing with difficult and/or angry customers?
- How do they de-stress after a busy day fielding calls?
- Identify their level of resilience in dealing with the workload?
Many factors play into agent retention, but the first few months of employment can make or break an agent’s first impression and longevity in their role. Research suggests that 58 percent of employees are likely to stay at a company for three years if they have a great onboarding program.
Consider the following:
- Once hired, ensure your new agents feel welcomed and like an essential part of the company and team by facilitating programs that let your agents get to know one another outside of work during the first few weeks of them joining.
- Communicate to new agents what success and career growth look like. Your plans for optimising agents’ roles will help you stand out in a competitive hiring climate and signal the importance of agent roles.
- Ensure new hires feel welcome even after official onboarding ends by creating programs and activities that connect them to the company’s higher mission.
- If you hire agents remotely, invest in programs connecting them to the company and other agents. It may seem expensive to invite agents to quarterly in-person meetings or to invest in happy hours, but hiring and training new agents costs much more.
Blazing Moon Call Center Training
Blazing Moon has developed the following SETA aligned call center programs:
- Oral Communications Skills.
- Messaging Magic.
- Dealing with Angry & Difficult Customers.
- Service Excellence.
- FAB & Value Articulation.
- Coaching for Performance in the Contact Center.
- Build your Resilience.
- Managing Hybrid Teams.
- Team Hybrid Optimisation.
- Stress and Time Management.
Enquire to email@example.com for these course outlines, pricing and blended learning solutions available.
Investigate the Technology
Here are a few things to consider when seeking to understand your customers and the type of technology you’ll need to help improve the overall customer experience:
- What do your customers most frequently contact your company about, and on which channels?
- What is the mix in urgency from high to low in the issues your customers need resolutions to?
- Of these issues, which can be automated to help take the load off your agents and better improve service for your customers?
When it comes to contact center technology, there are many solutions available, but they don’t necessarily improve a contact center’s ability to scale or improve customer resolution rates. Examples may include interactive voice responses (IVRs) that route or deflect calls or agent-assist tools that suggest the next-best actions to agents in real time. But while these solutions can add incremental gains in efficiency, they don’t address the root problem of understaffed contact centers, leading to longer wait times for your customers.
Contact centers need solutions that help to fully resolve high-volume and repetitive customer inquiries to scale more effectively and give agents more bandwidth to handle complex and high empathy cases.
With Contact Center Automation, companies can automate their most common customer service calls while empowering agents to focus on more complex and nuanced customer challenges. It’s a hybrid approach that helps companies resolve as many customer service requests as possible through automation by whatever channel the customer prefers – voice, chat, or SMS. This allows human agents to focus on the more complex customer support challenges. Furthermore, there’s no need to worry about this technology replacing or alienating agents as AI is expected to increase contact center productivity by 35 percent in the US alone by 2040.
By investing further in your existing agents, instilling best practices, onboarding, customised training solutions, and adopting Contact Center Automation, you’ll weather the storm of understaffed contact centers, high call volumes, and dissatisfied customers so that you can continue to provide great customer service despite uncertainty.
With the solutions presented, your agents can focus on more complex interactions that require empathy and less on ones that don’t, they’ll be more engaged and according to our research 87 percent less likely to leave your organisation.
The future is bright for customer service with the right technology and best practices instilled throughout the organisation.