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January 25, 2021

4 Ways to Measure Agent Experience and Satisfaction

Contact center managers typically live and die by their metrics, keeping an eagle eye on numbers like customer satisfaction scores and first call resolution rate. One metric that doesn’t get nearly as much attention, though (and wrongfully so) is agent satisfaction. 

It’s no secret that your agents are your front-line representatives in dealing with your customers. They have the most direct impact on your customer service metrics, like average handle time and service level. And we’ve long known that the experience of your agents is directly tied to their ability to serve customers effectively. 

According to MetricNet, agent satisfaction is a “bellwether metric” that’s positively correlated with customer satisfaction ratings and negatively correlated with absenteeism and turnover. If we can control agent satisfaction–which, to a large degree, we can–we can improve the customer experience while lowering the number of days agents miss work and decreasing the frequency with which they quit. 

A positive agent experience comes with direct economic benefits, as well. The cost to replace an agent, which includes screening, recruiting, onboarding and training a new agent, ranges on average from one half to two times the employee’s annual salary. And this doesn’t account for the lost knowledge and experience they take with them when they go, which is truly a loss for your customers. When you multiply this by dozens or even hundreds of agents leaving every year, the costs can be staggering. 

It pays to work toward creating a more agent-centric work environment that fosters satisfied, productive staffers. The first step in doing this is to measure agent experience; from there, you can take ongoing steps to improve it. Here are four ways to measure this critical contact center metric. 

4 Ways to Measure Agent Experience and Satisfaction

1. Use Agent Feedback Surveys

These are sometimes called employee satisfaction (ESAT) surveys or ESAT scores. They’re like CSAT scores, but for your employees. 

Not only do agent feedback surveys give you valuable insight into your agents’ perceptions of their work environment and their level of engagement with their jobs, they also give your staffers a sense that their voices are being heard.

Conduct agent feedback surveys on a regular basis. Annually or semi-annually is a good frequency to use. Use a structured framework and ask questions that elicit specific responses, like: 

  • On a scale of 1 to 10, how satisfied are you with your experience working for [company]?
  • Do you feel the organization gives you the tools you need to do your job effectively?
  • If you were to leave the company tomorrow, what would be the reason?
  • What do you like most about your job? What do you like least?

You can use a mix of yes/no, scoring and open-ended questions, but try to keep it succinct. Stick to the most important questions that will directly contribute to your goal of assessing your agents’ experience and level of satisfaction with their jobs. 

2. Use eNPS

You’re probably familiar with net promoter score, or NPS, which uses a single question to measure how likely your customers are to recommend your product or service. eNPS stands for employee net promoter score, and as the name suggests, it gauges how likely your employees would be to recommend working for your company. 

A typical eNPS survey is just one question, for example, ‘on a scale of 1 to 10, how likely would you be to recommend working at [company] to a friend?’ While it doesn’t offer the in-depth insights of a full employee feedback survey, it enables you to gather feedback incredibly quickly and flag when you might need to investigate further, like if your score dramatically shifts up or down from the last time you measured it. 

You can gather eNPS on a staggered basis, like at a new hire’s 3-month, 6-month and one-year mark. It’s also a good idea to check it after any major organizational changes, like a shakeup in management or the implementation of a new policy. 

3. Gather It Directly 

One of the best ways to measure your agents’ satisfaction is also one of the most basic: talking to them one on one. There’s no better channel for getting detailed, nuanced feedback on how your agents really feel about their workplace experience. 

Your regular coaching sessions and annual reviews are an ideal time to incorporate a conversation about agent experience. Wrap them up with one or two questions like ‘what would make your job easier?’ or ‘how could the company help you better serve our customers?’ and give your employees the safe space to share their candid comments.

4. Hold Exit Interviews

Done between the time an employee gives notice and their last day on the job, an exit interview is meant to assess the overall employee experience within your organization and uncover ways to improve it. 

Unfortunately, exit interviews are retrospective–in other words, they only flag problems once they’ve already occurred. However, they’re incredibly valuable because they can illuminate important issues employees might not be comfortable raising while they’re still employed. If you’re able to take the sometimes-harsh feedback to heart, it can help you make meaningful improvements to your agent retention and engagement. 

The quality of your agent experience is directly tied to the quality of their work. Thus, investing in your agents by consistently measuring and optimizing their satisfaction will always yield positive returns in the form of higher retention, speedier service times, and more satisfied customers.

A positive agent experience comes with direct economic benefits, as well. The cost to replace an agent, which includes screening, recruiting, onboarding and training a new agent, ranges on average from one half to two times the employee’s annual salary. And this doesn’t account for the lost knowledge and experience they take with them when they go, which is truly a loss for your customers. When you multiply this by dozens or even hundreds of agents leaving every year, the costs can be staggering. 

It pays to work toward creating a more agent-centric work environment that fosters satisfied, productive staffers. The first step in doing this is to measure agent experience; from there, you can take ongoing steps to improve it. Here are four ways to measure this critical contact center metric. 

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About LiveVox

LiveVox (Nasdaq: LVOX) is a next-generation contact center platform that powers more than 14 billion interactions a year. By seamlessly integrating omnichannel communications, CRM, AI, and WFO capabilities, the Company’s technology delivers an exceptional agent and customer experience while reducing compliance risk. With 20 years of cloud experience and expertise, LiveVox’s CCaaS 2.0 platform is at the forefront of cloud contact center innovation. The Company has more than 500 global employees and is headquartered in San Francisco, with offices in Atlanta; Columbus; Denver; New York City; St. Louis; Medellin, Colombia; and Bangalore, India. To stay up to date with everything LiveVox, follow us at @LiveVox or visit livevox.com.

To stay up to date with everything LiveVox, follow us at @LiveVox, visit www.livevox.com or call one of our specialists at (844) 207-6663.

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