Keeping agent morale high has always been one of the biggest challenges faced by contact center operators. Historically, agent churn makes it difficult for most operations to keep that tight knit sense of family and community. Not just that, it means more time and resources spent constantly recruiting, interviewing, hiring, and training new employees. Now, while new employees are great, surely there has to be a more efficient way to operate.
Over the course of our history (dating back to 1988), we’ve managed to maintain an average agent tenure that is three times the industry standard. While we’re honored to hold this record, what’s most important is how we do it. Luckily for you, dear reader, I’m willing to let you in on some secrets.
Nothing brings people together like getting involved in their community. In addition to providing a sense of personal fulfillment, it gives employees a chance to bond outside of the context of the workplace. It gives everyone a shared experience. Getting a group of people together and giving back to the community can be an immensely strong unifying force. That’s why it’s woven into the fabric of who we are as a company with our Random Acts of Humach Foundation.
Let’s Give ‘Em Something To Talk About
Let’s face it, the work done by agents can be very difficult. The continual stream of customer inquiries can really take it’s toll on one’s emotional state. That’s why it’s a great idea to give agents something to look forward to! This can be done through reaching benchmarks (I.e. first-call resolution rates, satisfaction scores) or, you know, just because it’s Friday. It can take the form of mini-games, like hula hoop marathons or a scavenger hunt, or something simple like having lunch brought in from a local restaurant. All of which is to say, make work feel like as much fun as possible.
Keep the Door Open
Much like community involvement initiatives, you want to do everything you can to foster a family environment. Everyone should feel involved, and no one should feel uncomfortable (it might sound like something from Barney but you would be surprised how many still struggle with this). An easy fix for this is to keep the door open. Leadership in contact centers should be approachable yet firm; be able to maintain that fine balance of feeling like a colleague but with the understanding of authority. The goal should be an open, respectful dialogue, and there’s no better way to do this than with an open door policy.
The correlation between happiness at work and productivity has been proven time and time again. While it can be challenging to make sure your employees enjoy coming to work every day, the ROI of fostering a welcoming atmosphere is pretty clear. High levels of employee morale has a trickle down effect. You’ll spend less time and money recruiting employees and getting them trained. Allowing you to focus on strengthening your team and delivering great products and services to your clients.
Happy agents make happy customers. Start spreading the joy today.