Contact center leaders, like you, have been using data for decades to pinpoint connections and trends to move the needle on performance and ROI. Your customer satisfaction scores haven’t dipped, but they haven’t improved much, either. The problem is, though, you’ve kept your vantage point consistently high level. You’re looking at the contact center only as a single unit rather than diving into the people driving the customer experience: Your agents.
You’ve completely overlooked how individual agents perform and feel at work, and how that impacts customers (and your bottom line).
Don’t worry, you’re not alone. As an industry, customer satisfaction rates haven’t budged past the 70th percentile in almost 25 years. Having a quantifiable measurement to actually gauge an agent’s performance and experience has been all-but-impossible. Making coaching and training those agents uniquely inefficient, ineffective, and expensive.
The Agent Experience Score is an agent-specific metric that reviews data from each agent’s interactions over a 90-day rolling window. When you don’t understand how your agents function and feel at work, your customers will never be as happy as they can be, and your agents will always have one foot out the door.
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Sharpen’s new contact center metric, AXS, uses a proprietary algorithm and rolling data to auto-calculate three aspects of your agents’ holistic well-being: efficiency, effectiveness, and empowerment.
We created AXS with the goal to help managers develop their agents and individualize coaching based on real data and agents’ level of satisfaction. When paired with in-line training, conversational coaching, and continuous development, AXS gives managers insight to improve the agent experience.
“The evidence is overwhelming that satisfied, well-trained agents result in happier customers,” said Adam Settle, vice president of product here at Sharpen. “But we also know that in a fast-paced contact center environment, it can be hard to identify the right coaching opportunities at the right time. By combining AXS with intelligent coaching tools, we’re helping managers develop the agents they count on to take care of their customers.”
See how AXS can help managers and agents.
Defining the three elements of Agent Experience.
Let’s dig into the quantifiable way to measure your agents’ experiences at work.
While captured by different data points, the three dimensions of agent experience work together to paint a picture of your agents’ well-being. AXS pulls data from your agents’ unique interactions to see how they’re tracking in terms of efficiency, effectiveness, and empowerment.
Efficiency: How easily can your agent solve customer issues. How timely, resourceful, and focused is your agent? Here, review metrics like Average Handle Time and Average Speed of Answer.
Effectiveness: This means your agents are hitting the bullseye when it comes to solving customer problems. They have the soft skills, competence, and reliability your customers expect out of each experience. Think metrics like CSAT and First Call Resolution.
Empowerment: Think about the human connection when you think empowerment. This element of experience is the one most often missed. It relates to your agent’s perceived value, ongoing development, and how supported they feel by their peers and leaders.
But remember, no one piece of your agents’ experience gives you the information you need for actionable, relevant agent development. An agent might hit the bullseye time and time again, but if it takes them an average of two hours per interaction, they aren’t meeting other important customer expectations.
You might have another agent who’s speedy AND accurate. But if she doesn’t feel included by her coworkers, then she isn’t friendly during her customer conversations. And she still delivers a negative customer experience. Instead of diving in on KPIs in single areas, link all three elements together for the trifecta of insight needed to pull the lever and launch your way to better CSAT scores and lower attrition.
You calculate AXS for each of your agents. Now what?
While today’s companies use powerful data to move ahead on the CX front, most leadership teams still rely on gut instincts over individual metrics for agent development. AXS gives you real-time, individualized data to grow your agents and your bottom line.
To get the full ROI and bottom line impacts that come with a better AX, like increased productivity, more customer advocates, and agents who stay in their seats, put AXS to work.
Use each of your agent’s identified experience scores to develop individualized coaching plans. Your agents who rank high in empowerment but low in effectiveness need different coaching than those who are highly effective but don’t feel supported at work.
Each individual score tells you where agents are struggling, so you can change your coaching approach in those pin-pointed areas.
Pair AXS data with your contact center platform training tools to deliver ultra-specific lessons to agents where they need help.
For agents struggling with efficiency, this might mean creating a lesson with quick links to resources and short keys they can use during interactions to speed things up.
For an agent who doesn’t feel empowered, this means popping coaching opportunities and in-line interaction feedback in their queue frequently. Show your agents who lack empowerment that they have the support they need to succeed. Call out specific moments in interactions when they nailed it, so they know they’re capable of repeating those incredible moments.
And remember, keep your agents’ behavior and learning style in mind, too. Just because two agents have similar scores doesn’t mean they want to be coached the same way. There are different states of empowerment, different levels of efficiency, and different ways to be effective.
Each of your agents still needs you to connect with them on a human level. They need you to discover what type of development works best for them. The cool thing about AXS is, it gives you actionable and relevant data to inform your conversations with agents. But it’s not designed to replace your 1:1s or the personal ways in which you interact with your team. It supplements those actions and improves them.
Use AXS to give your agents the tools and training needed to serve customers and grow professionally, individually at scale. Finally attack sky-high attrition rates and your customers’ dissatisfaction. With individualized, actionable insights delivered to you by AXS, you can coach and train your team to give each agent, and customer, the experience they deserve.
We’re so excited about this. We’d love to chat more about how AXS can impact your contact center. Let’s talk.