Featured Image for the blog: 3 Keys to Running a Highly Effective Contact Center (Start Today)

1. Enhance Contact Center Performance With Clear Data and Goals

Trust in the workplace is critical for success. According to a study in Harvard Business Review, employees at high-trust companies report:

  • 74% less stress
  • 50% higher productivity
  • 106% more energy at work
  • 13% fewer sick days
  • 76% more engagement
  • 29% more satisfaction in their lives
  • 40% less burnout

If you’re looking to increase efficiency and support your contact center agents, build trust through transparency. One of the simplest ways to improve performance and build trust is to show your agents their data and set clear goals.

When we don’t know what to aim toward in a workday, it can be disorienting. People quit jobs because they get so weary from what seems like lack of direction. Goals keep your entire organization, your team, and each employee focused. And ultimately, when your whole team is focused, you’re much better at helping customers.

Use Data to Build Transparency and Support Agents and Customers

Set clear metrics to drive your team.
First, choose the contact center metrics you want to improve and focus on. Then, make your data available so your agents know how they’re performing against each metric. When your team can see their performance daily, they know how they’ve helped customers and where they can improve. And remember, when you set your metrics, help your team understand why they’re being measured with certain KPIs. Keep your metrics visible on each agents’ dashboard, and inform your team on how each metric impacts your most important outcomes.

Establish measurable goals 
Work with your supervisors and agents to set benchmarks for growth each quarter with everyone on your team. This way team goals and their own personal goals drive their performance.

Use data for personalized performance
With Sharpen’s Performance Tiles, give your agents visibility into their individual wins and their success compared to peers, too. Have Performance Tiles on each employee’s dashboard to help agents see three key metrics you’re targeting. Sharpen’s embedded Tiles will show each agent where they stand against their target metrics (and their peer group) after each interaction.

With this kind of visibility, your agents always know where they can grow. And, you get data to bring to your coaching conversations, so you can teach them how to grow. Your customers will notice this too as they experience your ever-improving service standards.

2. Clean up your Omnichannel Service for Better Contact Center Efficiency

Omnichannel technology is a game-changer for contact center efficiency. Clean up your omnichannel strategy to fit the needs of your customers, and you’ll make life easier for your employees, too. Studies found that 55% of contact centers use at least 7 channels to communicate with customers, but only 13% are fully satisfied with how they use data to manage those customers. Quality omnichannel service requires personalization and consistency across all channels.

Personalization drives customer engagement. Customers want to promptly speak with someone who is knowledgeable and has the authority to help them. As I mentioned earlier, when you can align customer needs with the perfect person to help them, your customers get help efficiently, and your agents get to use their strengths.

With omnichannel best practices, streamline your technology to support you in routing customers to the help they need.

Deliver Omnichannel Service to Support Agents and Customers:

Keep things personal with detailed customer histories across channels.
If your customers get passed from live chat to email to phone, they shouldn’t have to repeat themselves over and over again to each new agent. With the right omnichannel tools in your contact center, you can keep customer information connected in your systems. Then, each agent can pull up customer info and get the context of the customer relationship before speaking with them. This empowers your agents to confidently speak to a customer’s situation and makes the interaction more personal and smooth.

Support agents who work remotely with cloud-native technology.
When you move your omnichannel systems to the cloud, your employees can work from anywhere and still get the ease of jumping from channel to channel and keeping track of customer info.

Empower agents to be authentic and relevant across all channels.
Through training and coaching, encourage your agents to develop their soft skills, like tone of voice, empathy, and listening. Your agents should adapt no matter the channel they’re using.

3. Engage your Contact Center Employees with Coaching and Training

It’s nearly impossible to have happy customers when your employees are unhappy. But, keep your employees happy, successful, and engaged in their work, and your customers leave satisfied. A critical part of employee engagement and success comes with consistent training and coaching. Everyone wants to grow in their career. It’s not fun staying stagnant.

Make training and coaching a priority to encourage agent growth and help them to better help your customers.

Keep Training and Coaching Consistent to Support Agents and Customers:

Make training part of your culture.
Your employees want to grow and gain new skills that help them succeed. Make training and coaching ongoing, no matter how long an employee has been working for you.

Have consistent and productive 1:1s and training sessions.
Too often, training stops when onboarding stops. But, we all need a push beyond the first 30 days on the job. Set up a training schedule for all employees to get refreshers and take assessments throughout the year. Coach and train in employee 1:1s, giving specific attention to the needs and challenges of each employee. Keep your meeting structured and organized and always come prepared to better use your time and your agents’.

Use technology to streamline your training and coaching.
Through helpful tools, make life easier on yourself by investing in contact center technology that allows you to give quality coaching tips and feedback to agents efficiently. Through Speech Analytics, In-line training, and Agent Scorecards, you can address your employees’ development from anywhere and quickly. Give agents in the moment feedback on their daily customer interactions.