Keeping an in-person team motivated is tough enough. But what do you do when half or more of your agents are working from another location?
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This is the reality contact centers are facing right now, as they navigate the post-pandemic transition back to the workplace. But this ‘new normal’ comes with uncharted territory, and the success of your business hangs in the balance. According to Fonolo’s 2020 State of the Contact Center report, agent attrition is worsening. Contact center leaders are struggling to hire and train new agents as employee turnover increases.
This is just one of many reasons why your contact center needs to prioritize agent engagement. Our new guide, How to Foster Agent Engagement in a Hybrid Contact Center, will offer you valuable insights and actionable tips so you can keep your agents motivated and engaged, no matter where they are working from!
Read on for a sneak peek, or download it for free.
Invest in communication.
Strong communication is an essential foundation to any high-performing team. This is especially true for contact center agents, as they need to be in-the-know about any and all changes and updates regarding customers, products, services, and more.
DID YOU KNOW?
Replacing a single contact center agent can cost up to $20,000 USD.
– McKinsey & Company
However, fostering effective communication between teammates becomes significantly more challenging with a remote or hybrid contact center model. For this reason, you’ll need to invest in the proper resources and channels to help your agents keep in touch with the latest news. These channels can also serve to help your agents build stronger working relationships with one another, which is always a good thing for employee engagement!
Optimize your onboarding.
First impressions are so important, especially when it comes to employee engagement. This rule doesn’t change when your new hires are remote. A well-planned onboarding and training period will help set the tone of their work experience with your contact center and set the bar for engagement high.
When developing your onboarding processes, always consider the new hire’s perspective. How can you bridge the connection between remote and on-location employees? How can you ensure they feel included in the company culture, even when removed from the physical workplace? How can you surprise and delight them on their first day to make them feel welcomed and valued? By taking these questions into account, you’ll help your new agents develop positive and memorable impressions of your contact center.
Give them real benefits.
Let’s be real — compensation is a huge factor when it comes to motivating your employees. You may be tempted to believe that the best employees are motivated by things other than money. The reality is, if you compensate your agents well enough to alleviate financial strains in their personal life, they’ll have the bandwidth to perform better in their daily work.
Aside from salary, benefits are another form of compensation that your staff will value. In fact, most employees use benefit packages to gauge how much their employer values them and their work. Ask yourself if your compensation packages reflect the quality and scope of work you expect from your agents, and if they are attractive enough to encourage future hires to join your team.
Invest in tools and services to support your agents.
Don’t send your agents on a mission without the proper equipment. Trying to solve customer problems without the right tools can be a downright nightmare, and will frustrate your staff quickly.
This is even more essential for your remote staff, as technical support is more challenging to access. To ensure all your agents are fully equipped to handle customer queries, audit your current software and technologies and make plans to upgrade or replace any outdated or low-performing tools. Trust us, your agents will thank you.
Make excuses to meet IRL.
Remember what it’s like to meet your fellow teammates face-to-face? As we enter the post-pandemic world, it’ll become even more important to touch base IRL (in real life) to foster relationships and team camaraderie.
While remote work has its perks, it is definitely more challenging to embrace work culture from afar. These regular in-person touchpoints will help bridge that gap so your in-office and virtual employees can bond and fully support one another.
Promote wellness together.
Health and wellness aren’t just buzzwords, they’re valuable aspects of employee life. According to Harvard Business Review, more than half of employees surveyed (53%) say they feel more exhausted since COVID-19 reared its head. And it’s safe to say that the pandemic has has a significant impact on call center and contact center demand, creating widespread agent fatigue and burnout.
Offering wellness programs and options for your agents empowers them better manage their own physical and mental health. This is especially crucial for remote and hybrid contact centers, as it’s more challenging to spot signs of exhaustion when your employees are working remotely. Setting up regular one-on-one check-ins can help if your agents feel safe opening up about health and wellness challenges.
READ THE FULL GUIDE:
(It's 100% free, we promise.)