Ask even the most successful call center managers and they will tell you that at some point, agent retention has been an issue. A constantly rotating roster of agents may negatively affect your customer service; delivering consistent customer service begins and ends with your agents.
Despite their best efforts, many managers still struggle with their agent retention rates. The reasons for this vary, but according to the Ventana Research Call Center Agent Productivity Poll, only 29% of call center agents feel they are receiving adequate training.
Agent retention can be easy if you follow these tips:
Be Available to Your Agents
The simplest rule you can follow to improve your agent retention rate is to be available to your agents and provide them with face-to-face training. However, according to the study from Ventana, only 37% of the call centers surveyed have set aside time to train their agents, leaving many agents feeling that their employers don’t care about their training. This can result in a high agent turnover rate for your business.
Treat Your Agents the Same Way You Treat Your Clients
Customer service providers will tell you that their clients are their top priority. They should utilize the same approach with their agents. However, many managers may not have the budget and resources to give their agents the attention they need.
Use Idle Time for Training
It’s inevitable that most call centers will experience slow periods. Take advantage of this idle time to train your agents. It has been discovered that many call center agents spend up to 11% of their time waiting for the next call, which adds up to five weeks a year! This is a time period you can spend improving your agents’ skills.
Use Technology to Your Advantage
Utilize solutions to predict slow periods at your call center. As mentioned, these idle periods can be used to provide your agents with more training or, when training isn’t necessary, these periods help them catch up on work they may be falling behind on.
This will not only improve your agent retention rate, but it will also greatly improve your customer service, since your agents will be better equipped to handle calls.
Keep Training Sessions Short but Sweet
You may only have a short time to schedule training sessions for your agents. Use this time wisely! Create new, innovate ways to train your agents during idle periods.
3C Contact Services has a number of strategies that we provide our partners with, including tips on how to provide concise training sessions so you can use idle time to your advantage!
McConnell, M., “Stop the Contact Center’s Revolving Door,” DestinationCRM.com, March 27, 2015; http://www.destinationcrm.com/Articles/Web-Exclusives/Viewpoints/Stop-the-Contact-Centers-Revolving-Door-102835.aspx.
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