Putting effort into connecting with your call center teams is important - these are the people that are the front-line support for your clients - and empowering them may help ensure a positive experience with your brand.
Delivering a good experience is crucial for customer retention with studies showing that 89% of consumers have stopped doing business with a company after experiencing poor customer service. While you likely already have a strategy in place for supporting your call center teams, here is a quick list of suggestions to refresh and round out your approach.
Being a call center representative is demanding work and morale can suffer, so these are some easy ways to motivate your employees.
Ask for Input: One of the biggest reasons for agents leaving is that they feel undervalued. One of the easiest ways to show that you care about them? Ask for their input. Studies have shown that companies where employees feel comfortable sharing input report higher retention.
Use Gamification: Gamification is the concept of applying game mechanics and game design techniques to engage and motivate people to achieve their goals. Representing daily and weekly tasks in a new and challenging way is a great way to motivate agents. It’s a growing trend you shouldn’t miss out on.
Provide Feedback Often: Part of motivating your employees is helping them understand how to get better. Giving frequent - at minimum, weekly and at best, daily - updates on performance against yearly goals and fellow teammates should be part of your feedback.
Offer More Training: Best practices don’t teach themselves. Help your employees continually stay up to date on customer service and engagement best practices by offering personalized trainings or group lunch-and-learns that they can opt into.
Allow Agents to Work from Home: Giving agents some flexibility by taking calls from home can help improve both employee retention and productivity along with a range of other good reasons. One Stanford study found that employees who work from home are 13 percent more productive compared with their in-office counterparts.
Focus on the Right Metrics
While feedback is essential, it is important to be thoughtful about what metrics will truly improve one’s client engagement skills.
Strictly measuring and giving feedback on productivity metrics like average handling time and number of calls handled per hour can make agents feel merely like a statistic. Productivity metrics are relevant, but measuring other insights like skill-level of problem solving when unplanned challenges arise or level of empathy shown to clients is also important.
Focusing on customer-centric metrics will both help streamline client engagement and help improve productivity metrics at the same time.
Create a Culture of Knowledge Sharing
Your customer-facing employees are likely to find their own service-styles and approaches, but they may be missing the opportunity to learn from each other. It’s important to create a culture of knowledge-sharing.
When you empower your employees to use their experiences and learnings to create new strategies, it can not only improve company processes but also strengthen overall teams, so all agents are putting their best foot forward.
Using a mix of these strategies will not just help your agents, it will directly impact your clients as you create a workforce dedicated to maintaining quality customer service.