Three ways technology can enhance your contact center performance
Published: Jan 07, 2019
Customer experience (CX) is key to competitiveness—and your contact center is at the heart of customer engagement. Managers need to make sure their service agents are empowered, engaged and motivated. Here’s how the latest technology can help.
It’s no secret that contact centers are a high intensity environment. Irregular shifts and unpredictable workloads can put pressure on both employees and managers. And it’s crucial that service agents maintain a positive and professional attitude at all times—a demotivated employee can quickly result in poor customer experiences.
The intensity of contact center work has been exacerbated by modern demands. Today’s customers expect to engage with companies and get answers to their queries on a 24/7 basis. And they have less patience than ever for slow issue resolution.
As a contact center manager, how do you overcome these challenges to provide a better working environment for your employees—all while empowering them to deliver the best possible CX? Here are three ways the latest technology can enhance your contact center performance.
1. Automate resource management
The demanding nature of contact center work can lead to high rates of sickness and absenteeism. Not only does this pose a resource challenge, it can lower the morale of colleagues who need to provide cover at the last minute—particularly on holidays, nights or weekends. Schedule uncertainty and stress can spread fast, leading to high turnover rates—and as a result, driving up recruitment costs and eating into business profits.
Fortunately, technology can help by enabling better overall resource management. Artificial intelligence (AI) driven analytics can recognise patterns in your data that no human ever could. These insights can help you predict peaks and troughs in customer demand with improved accuracy, so you can allocate shifts more strategically. You can also analyze historic data to forecast when contact centre employees may be out due to illness so you can be better prepared. And much of this scheduling can be automated—freeing you up to focus on other managerial tasks.
2. Use gamification to drive performance
Your employees are probably using innovative smartphone apps on a daily basis. Why not use the same technology to make their jobs more fun and engaging? Gamification apps can be built into your systems and used to award points to employees when they take a certain number of calls, get their administrative tasks done or achieve specific CX outcomes.
Not only do gamified apps help to boost morale, they can also incentivise better performance and self-improvement. Allowing employees to see their real-time gaming scores compared to their peers is an effective motivational technique. You can further incentivise performance by allowing the exchange of game points for rewards. These don’t have to be cash-based—you could offer flexible working hours, bonus breaks or office perks.
You can also help employees feel supported by providing easy ways for them to upskill, through, for example, online courses and knowledge databases. These e-learning opportunities can help create a more stimulating environment and support career development, while alleviating some of the training pressure on managers.
3. Empower employees with customer insights
No customer wants to be passed between multiple service agents or forced to explain their problem over and over again. Yet it’s a situation almost all of us have experienced at least once. Fortunately, technology can now empower your contact center employees so they always have the right information at their fingertips.
There are platforms available that can provide a real-time, single dashboard view of all your customers’ relevant information—even pulling their store visits or purchase histories as well as interactions with other agents. This means employees can greet customers by name and offer truly personalised service, without the customers having to repeat themselves or having a disconnected experience. AI-driven knowledge databases can also help employees to find the answer to any question quickly and easily.
These digital tools can ultimately improve overall CX and dramatically speed up issue resolution.
Not only do these technologies make it easier for your employees to deliver great service, they can help you attract talented digital natives to your workforce. To learn more about how you can drive better CX outcomes, download our new report, “How to optimize CX through your contact center”.