The Consequences of Underestimating Your Contact Center Agents

Posted by Rodney Kuhn

10/1/15 1:30 PM

Customer_service_iconsThe contact center is the heart of any company, the direct link to your customers. As such, their experience with your contact center’s agents can ultimately make or break your business. In fact, poor customer service costs the U.S. more than $40 billion each year, according to research from NewVoiceMedia.

The losses are high because poor customer service has a domino effect: One bad interaction not only loses the sale, but many times the customer as well, since 58 percent of Americans won’t repeat business with a company after a negative experience, per the research. Consequently, that could represent a significant loss in revenue from existing customers, not to mention the number of prospective customers that could be lost due to bad word of mouth (59 percent of 25- to 34-year-olds share poor customer experiences online, NewVoiceMedia reports). On the positive side, almost 70 percent of those treated well will tell their friends.

With the prevalence of social media today, it’s easy to see how stellar customer service isn’t about just one customer—but, rather, one after the other—to preserve brand image and future potential.

With statistics like those above, managers are reminded that they need to rely on their agents more than ever. To ensure optimal customer service, it’s essential you provide them with the most comprehensive and effective tools available. Contact center software that places agent training at the forefront will give agents a leg up in providing competitive, never-before-seen customer service. Here’s how:

  1. Automatic, customized training: Today’s high-performing contact centers not only have to address a vast array of complex topics, they’re also required to answer customers’ multichannel needs. This requires extensive agent training, which takes time—something most busy managers don’t have. By deploying contact center software with a built-in automated coaching system, you’ll provide your agents with customized training precisely when they need it most. For example, recordings of evaluated customer interactions can be automatically sent to agents for coaching or stored in your training library for future use.  The system also captures data, i.e., voice and agent keystrokes, right from the desktop in real time, so issues can be identified and resolved immediately.

  2. Effective remote training: This customized coaching method can be implemented on any computer for any employee, even when they’re working remotely. Accordingly, as your business grows, you can easily expand your workforce without incurring the expense of more office space.

  3. Autonomous control: With this kind of advanced online coaching, your employees will not only be more knowledgeable and better-trained, but they’ll also work more autonomously. Since the software is completely customized, agents can focus on their own specific needs and not waste time training on skills in which they’re already proficient. Resolving their issues can also help instill more confidence in the workplace, which is undoubtedly a must for acquiring and retaining customers.

More effective, motivated and empowered contact center agents will invariably result in enhanced customer experiences and retention, while ultimately improving your company’s bottom line.

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