Agent turnover is one of the most expensive problems in the contact center. According to Harvard Business Review, the organizational costs of employee turnover range between 100% and 300% of the replaced employee’s salary. In addition, it typically takes 8 months for a new employee to reach full productivity. As employees try to get ramped up, the contact center is not as efficient, and is likely losing money as a result. These stats alone (and there are more) provide enough motivation for contact center leaders to find ways to reduce agent turnover.
Here are three areas of consideration to improve the agent experience and prevent agent churn.
How to Reduce Agent Turnover
Simplify the agent experience with the right tools
When agents have the right tools that are up-to-date and dependable, they are empowered to focus on customer service. These tools include a unified desktop experience, customized dashboards, and comprehensive scripts. Offering integrated systems in your contact center simplifies the experience for the agents, which ultimately leads to better customer service.
Unified desktop: Eliminate the hassle of toggling between screens when time is of the essence and present agents with the information and context they need to succeed from a single window. Agents are able to engage customers on their channel of choice with a single user-friendly interface that makes it easy to converse across every channel.
Agent scripting: Flexible agent scripts pull together all of the relevant information your agents might need for any interaction. With proper agent scripts, you can guide agents through a variety of customer interactions including onboarding, account servicing, support, and sales. By leveraging scripts, you help agents, and your business, mitigate risks.
Adding customer self-service tools also simplify the agent experience. By incorporating options like virtual agents and IVR, you reduce the workload for agents, allowing them the time and opportunity to have quality interactions with customers. These systems also collect the necessary information, helping to route customers to the right handles best equipped to handle the issue.
Provide comprehensive training and coaching
Onboarding is the most critical period in an employee’s time at a company. In fact, industry average for agent turnover is 44%, with a lack of training and development often cited as a key reason for leaving. Therefore, providing the right resources are critical for long-term success.
As contact centers have pivoted to working remotely, elearning allows businesses to provide targeted, effective, and trackable training to agents. Make it easy for your agents to advance their skill sets with digital training and performance scorecards.
You can also use reporting and analytics capabilities to provide effective agent training and coaching. The accessible metrics help supervisors pinpoint areas where agents need more coaching and the simplicity of the reporting frees up managers’ time that can be used for agent development.
Implement feedback loops for improvement
After onboarding and initial training, agents still want to receive feedback, improve, and excel. Implementing systems to allow for easy evaluation, corrections, and recognition go a long way in making agents feel valued and successful.
Speech analytics overcomes employees’ concerns about an unfair evaluation process by automatically scoring 100% of conversations that provide objective feedback. The information is made available immediately and allows the agents to feel like they’ll be evaluated fairly and consistently. This consistency can give agents the confidence that good work will be recognized and rewarded.
You can also use speech analytics to transcribe and score all of a contact center’s calls, giving you an unbiased and holistic understanding of performance. Through these insights, you can learn where agents may be falling short or where they’re excelling. Contact center managers can pinpoint the challenges and use the successful interactions to train and improve execution. Speech analytics can help inform training strategies to ensure consistent quality across all customer calls.
Screen and voice recording also helps to capture agent interactions and helps to assess each interaction based on the customer’s sentiment and the outcome of the call.
Providing agents with feedback to improve is one of the best ways to empower your agents to be successful. 70% of agents say that empowerment to take action when a problem comes up is important to their engagement at work. By providing the tools and time to upleveling agents, you are creating an environment that makes your agents feel valued. Show your agents you trust their judgement and give them the opportunity to continue to improve.
Providing the right tools, training, and feedback gives agents the opportunity to improve. As they grow in their roles, agents can have more consistent customer interactions, improve outcomes, and increase success. By investing in the right areas, you can reduce agent turnover.