“They love me, they love me not.”
If you’ve been plucking petals to discern whether your call center team members are really committed to your business, you’re not alone. Call centers all across the country are feeling the strain of turnover and unengaged agents.
Rather than sit idly by and wonder if your people are happy, it’s time to check the pulse of your call center culture. Is it beating rapidly with job satisfaction and positive attitudes? Or is it lagging, laden with dissatisfaction and a lack of motivation?
Here are a few signs your call center is in trouble, along with how to address common workforce engagement problems.
Attrition is pervasive among call centers. The average turnover rate of call center teams is 35–40%. That’s about triple the rate of attrition in other occupations. Agents who are not showing up to work are likely disengaged – and possibly looking for new jobs. If you’re noticing a trend of absenteeism in your call center, empty seats and long hold times may be in your future. Of course, the agents who do come to work will feel the strains of that pressure, and they might not stick around for much longer, either. This snowball effect can quickly become a costly, intractable problem, and can even lead to the closure of a brick and mortar call center.
What to do: Consider augmenting your call center with a virtual model. Virtual agents can fill your open seats and make it easier for you to retain and better utilize the engaged members of your workforce. Through the virtual model, experienced professionals can answer your customer calls without stretching your existing resources.
Too much work and too much stress tend to lead to anxiety, resentment, depression, and other negative emotions. An overworked agent’s attitude can deteriorate quickly. Performance and morale may suffer, and customers tend to get the brunt end of it. Working long, monotonous hours simply isn’t sustainable – not for your agents, not for the people you serve, and not for your business. When people are overworked, an unexpected event or flu season may be all it takes to wipe out your team’s morale.
What to do: Leverage the elasticity of the flexible network. A virtual model allows you to supplement your employees during peak call times, giving your in-house team time to rest.
Many companies are converting their brick and mortar employees into remote agents. In theory, this is a great idea. People want to work at home so they can spend less time commuting, save money, and work where and how they can do their best. However, few companies offer a means for these employees to connect with their co-workers and feel included in a community. Remote workers become isolated when they’re not regularly engaged. Plus, when companies send their best agents to work at home, the morale and efficiency of the in-house staff can suffer.
What to do: Leave it to the professionals. Remote communities need to be appropriately structured to support agents effectively. By partnering with a virtual model such as Liveops, a company can take advantage of a pre-built network of thriving agents. There’s no need for a call center to handle agent time management, necessary resources, and technology requirements alone.
Whether you feel the love in your call center or not, a virtual model can help. Contact us to learn more about how a scalable virtual workforce can inject more positivity and efficiency into your existing call center.