The Secret to Awesome Call Center Management
How to keep the moving parts moving and motivated
Managing a call center can be a grueling task. Not only are there a number of personalities to manage, but the demands of constantly providing amazing customer service can create a stressful environment for both supervisors and agents. The call center needs to run at peak efficiency while maintaining a high-call volume and consistency of service.
The secret: happy agents.
The secret is out: the best way to develop an efficient call center with happy, loyal customers is to foster happy agents. In short, happy agents = happy customers. Here are some tips we found that are share-worthy when it comes to developing a call center that runs like a well-oiled machine:
- Flexible scheduling Offer flexible scheduling to help limit turnover rates, known as “churn.” Flexibility from management can go a long way in keeping employees happy. Additionally, make a policy for your staff to request 2-4 days off a month for special or personal occasions.
- Bonuses Implement bonus pay incentives for making goals and quotas. Gamification is a proven way to get agents engaged. And engaged agents are happy agents!
- Strategize staffing Ensure you are staffed adequately for lunch hours as well as 15-minute breaks for agents throughout the work day. Scrambling at the last minute does not support agent retention rates.
- Limit overtime Keep overtime at a minimum. This helps the budget as well as employee morale. There are always those who are able to work a ton of overtime (like single people) and those who are not (like single dads). Although generous overtime sounds good, it can sometimes cause feelings of inequity for those who have a limited ability to take advantage of it and thus earn the extra dollars.
- Keep a temp agency on standby Employ a great temporary staffing agency so that you always have a pool of great employees when you do experience turnover.
- Stay hip and modern Keep up with changes in technology so that your call center agents can efficiently and effectively do their jobs. Review your IVR, desktop software and other tools frequently.
- Embrace being EvenBetter every day Make sure that agent training is an ongoing process, especially when new technology is introduced. An agent who feels inadequate in his tasks can quickly become frustrated and discouraged, which leads to disengagement and, ultimately, higher turnover rates.
Remember, happy agents will translate into happy customers. There is nothing worse than calling a business and speaking to someone who acts like she could care less about your question or issue. If employees experience a high degree of job satisfaction, that will greatly impact how they deal with the customers they help.