According to Gallup, only 36% of U.S. employees are actively engaged in their work and workplace this year. That leaves a lot of employees who are disengaged and likely to give you their minimum required effort. In addition, that leaves many who will leave if a slightly better job comes around. In a virtual call center, this level of disengagement could seriously affect your customer and employee loyalty.
To illustrate, McKinsey & Co. report that engaged and satisfied call-center employees are:
- 8.5x more likely to stay than leave within a year
- 4x more likely to stay than dissatisfied colleagues
- 3.3x more likely to feel extremely empowered to resolve customer issues
Keeping your Virtual Call Center Employees Productive
When your virtual call center employees are invested in their work and success, your customers, and your bottom line, will feel the effects. Unfortunately, remote work can be pretty disengaging if you don’t maintain productivity. Measuring agent productivity and success is critical to keep your virtual call center performing.
How do you know how to measure for success? Call center managers are responsible for 70% of their team’s engagement. Through your strategic planning, you can promote excellence and build a foundation to reliably track employee productivity.
To get you started, we’ve compiled a few useful metrics and tactics to ensure your remote agents are engaged, motivated, and successful in their at-home offices.
Read Next: Four Remote Work Rules to Keep Your Agents Engaged and Productive
Measure for Agent Satisfaction
Employees who feel their voice is heard are 4.6 times more likely to feel empowered to perform their best work. But, when agents are disconnected and dissatisfied in a virtual call center, you’re almost guaranteed to see a dip in productivity. Just as you measure for customer satisfaction on a regular basis, you should be measuring for agent satisfaction. Here are a couple ways to do so:
- Send Out Surveys: It can be hard to ask for honest feedback. But, surveys may be the easiest way to get honest information about how your employees are feeling about work. Use agent satisfaction surveys to help quantify agent sentiment and happiness. Regularly (maybe once a month) send out anonymous surveys with questions on work conditions, team fit, overall workload, and wellness.
Then, supplement these shorter surveys with an annual longer survey so employees have a chance to give long-form answers regarding satisfaction in their jobs.
- Hold Routine 1:1s and Feedback Sessions: We all get tired from a calendar that’s overcrowded with video call meetings. But, as a manager of a remote team, it’s important to touch base personally with each of your employees through the weeks and months.
One on one sessions give your agents a safe space to process feelings and talk through challenging customer situations. They also provide you an opportunity to offer tactical coaching tips and invest in your employees’ development. Use some of your 1:1 meetings to ask open-ended questions to better understand your agents’ metrics.
Read Next: Five Tips for Improving Efficiency and Empowering your Agents
Measure for Service Level
In a virtual call center, it’s easy to feel isolated and disconnected from your employees. How do you know they’re working consistently? How do you know they’re not watching Netflix instead of answering customer emails and taking customer calls?
It’s important for your service to be consistent in your virtual call center as it impacts your customers’ satisfaction directly. Just a few days of some agents slacking, and your customers may not come back. In fact, after a bad customer service experience, 39% of customers report they will avoid a company for two years!
Regularly measure your service level and customer satisfaction to know where to coach your agents and where to set goals for your team. Here are a couple metrics to track your service level in your virtual call center:
- Average Hold Time: Measure how long an agent places a customer on hold to see how long agents have to hit the pause button during interactions to help a customer reach a resolution. Placing a customer on hold isn’t necessarily bad practice. Your agents may occasionally need to send a question into Slack or reach out to another department.
But, too much time on hold can lead to a worse customer experience. In fact, 60% of customers feel that waiting on hold for just one minute is too long. Track hold time to understand where there are inefficiencies in your processes and gaps in your agents’ knowledge.
Read Next: How to Use Data to Inform your Decision Making for Standout Service This Year
- Active Contact Resolution: We’ve written before about what’s not so great about First Contact Resolution (FCR) as a metric. FCR is tricky to track and can fault an agent for something that’s outside of their control. But, Active Contact Resolution (ACR) measures the percentage of your agent’s interactions that don’t require a customer to call back within a given time frame, like 1, 3 or 7 days.
When you track this metric, you can assess whether customers are dealing with repeat issues and not getting a resolution to their problem. But, you can also measure your agents’ ability to solve the problem during their own interaction rather than gauging performance on the customers’ interaction history with a host of other agents. Agents are scored by their percentage of successful interactions, giving you a picture of how productive they are in meeting customer expectations.
Make your Metrics Visible
When your agents can see their metrics and track performance, they’re going to stay engaged. Once they have the clarity and understanding they need to excel in their roles, you can expect to see renewed energy and excitement.
Let’s consider how you can help your agents keep track of their performance within your virtual call center platform:
- Create Custom Dashboards: Make your metrics more accessible to your agents through custom dashboards. Build dashboards with metrics your agents care about. Your agents want to track progress and see how they’re trending toward KPIs that matter to them. These may look different from what your executives want to see.
Through the performance management tool performance tiles, help your agents have visibility into their individual and collective success against known metrics. Tiles help your agents, and their peers and managers, see the metrics that are most important to your organizational successes and understand how they’re performing against those metrics. When your agents can see how they’re moving towards or away from their personal metrics, they’ll know where to improve day-to-day.
Read Next: The Four Call Center Dashboard Metrics Your Executive Team Needs to See