Nearshore Americas

The Right Tools for the Job: Equipping Agents with Up-to-Date Tech Enables Success

Imagine this scenario: A skilled call center agent surpasses all the hiring requirements and is brought on board. They are highly motivated and eager to start their new job. Three months later, performance issues begin to surface, and within nine months, that promising new agent has left the company.

This unfortunate storyline plays out all too often in call centers that use outdated technology and processes. It is no surprise that even the most enterprising agent will become frustrated and disengaged if forced to work around technological obstacles to assist customers.

Technology Is a Key Contributor to the Employee Experience

Employees have access to countless smart apps and innovative technology that make their personal lives easier. They expect the same ease of use in the tools they use at work. A survey by The Workforce Institute at Kronos revealed that more than a third of employees worldwide feel that their job is harder than it should be because of outdated processes and legacy technology. Almost half want their workplace technology to perform just like the technology they use in their personal lives.

Today’s employees are used to having instant access to information at their fingertips, yet too often in the workplace, the tools don’t function the way they should. Most employees – 91% – say that they crave modern tech solutions in the workplace, according to Adobe Workfront’s 7th Annual State of Work report.

A third of employees worldwide feel that their job is harder than it should be because of outdated processes and legacy technology

The stark contrast between personal and workplace tech should be a top concern for companies. The same study found that 88% of employees consider workplace technology an essential part of the employee experience while 49% of US workers said they would leave their job if they were unhappy or frustrated with the technology they use at work.

Call Center Agents are Only as Good as Their (Digital) Tools 

We previously discussed The Office Gurus’ (TOG) approach to attracting the best call center agents. But recruiting and hiring is only the first step in the agent journey. Once onboard, it is up to the call center to provide its agents with the proper tools to succeed in the job.

Partnering with a tech-savvy BPO provider is the most cost-effective way to access state-of-the-art call center technology. What support tools will ensure happy agents, top performance and the best possible experience for your customers?

Knowledge Base — A comprehensive, centralized knowledge base empowers agents to quickly and effectively resolve customers’ issues with instant access to up-to-date information. We’ve developed our knowledge base to provide agents with the familiarity and ease of a Google-style search interface. Additional features like tracking and analytics provide insights into frequently accessed content, which automatically initiates a training opportunity for an agent or alerts our training and development team to possible knowledge gaps.

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Learning Management Software — An integrated learning management system (LMS) provides the framework for agent coaching, training and ongoing learning and development. Coaching, quality and performance management tools are baked into the LMS to ensure that coaching opportunities are quickly identified, scheduled and tracked to completion. Our LMS is part of our proprietary TOG-developed contact center management platform and tracks agents’ performance so that poor QA scores in a particular area will automatically trigger a training course for that agent, and will then deliver the training, testing and follow-up reporting on the agent’s progress every step of the way.

Speech Analytics — While speech analytics is not a tool used directly by frontline agents, it allows our QA team to quickly and easily analyze recorded calls to flag opportunities where additional coaching may help agents improve call-handling and customer satisfaction. Our speech tool’s advanced conversation analytics capabilities allow us to identify the root causes for poor performance to better support our agents with targeted training to help them succeed.

Interactive Call Flow Manager – A well-thought-out game plan and call-flow tool are essential to an agent’s ability to deliver the most appropriate solution for each customer’s needs or pain points. Our proprietary interactive web-based tool empowers agents with the ability to navigate even the most complex decision trees — for instance, those that include multiple offers and very specific probing questions. When agents feel confident in their ability to propose the most beneficial solutions to customers, it results in the best possible experience for both the customer and the employee.

Digital Tools Enable Positive Outcomes for Employees and Customers

Contact center technology continues to advance rapidly, but updating the platforms and tools agents need to deliver quick, efficient service is expensive. It is no wonder that so many companies struggle to maintain their legacy systems for far too long.

Keep in mind that happy employees create happy customers. Workplace technology can be a great enabler of positive outcomes for both call center employees and customers.

Giving agents access to the latest call center technology and tools will help them perform well, expand their skills and thrive in their careers. It’s all part of delivering an exceptional employee experience.

Dominic Leide

Dominic Leide is the President of The Office Gurus and has over 20 years of experience in the BPO / Call Center industry. Dominic has led The Office Gurus from a 50 seat captive call and contact center to a global provider of BPO solutions with 5 call centers in 4 different countries. Dominic is an active member of the Young President’s Organization and has taken part in call center panels on a variety of topics. In his free time his passions include boating with his family and coaching as many youth sports as possible!

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