Under-performance is a largely common yet sensitive subject for many call centers. It's a rampant problem with many factors that can make it hard to pinpoint the exact problem. The following tips will help give you an idea of things that you can focus on if you want to improve your overall performance in your call center.
1. Focus on what’s really important
It's crucial to have an objective and to know what really is important to your call center vision. Determine what you want to see when hitting goals, creating a certain type of environment or encouraging behavior you want to see.
2. Share the knowledge
Enforce good behavior by sharing the best known practices. For example, if you hear a good (or bad) call, share it with the group and have them highlight the strengths and weaknesses to improve training.
3. Everyone is their own worst critic
Have your agents listen to their own calls and grade them. Have them figure out what needs improvement. This not only helps them understand their abilities but it lets them take control of their performance.
4. Be Clear
Don’t let it be a secret what your expectations are. Set precise goals that you want to see achieved and how you want to see them performed. Just don't make your expectation impossible to achieve...
5. Build up those relationships
Get to know the people that work around you. Strong relationships build up influence that will give you the power to manage and achieve objectives more effectively.
Make your applications more user friendly for your agents. Take a look at their desktop and watch how they handle the technology and the customer on a call. Easy-to-use tech empowers and decreases frustration with your agents by giving them access to the right information at the right time.
7. Impossible goals?
Make your objectives realistic. Be sure to adjust the goals depending on if they are resulting as being too low or high. Agents will quickly burn out if things are too difficult.
8. Immediate Feedback
Give your agents timely feedback. This doesn’t mean just giving a weekly report, but showing them live statistics to see how they're performing. Post these on community boards or desktop applications.
Timely acknowledgements and rewards for great performance can go a long way. They can come in many forms so make sure you’re not using the same reward for all. Click here for more tips about rewarding.
10. Change behavior
When you have employees who aren't meeting goals, investigate and correct instead of punishing. Ensure that they are 100% on board with what is expected and how they can get there. Let them know how they impact the team and how they can change to improve results. For tips on better ways to give feedback, see here.
11. Actually listen
Always keep your agents involved in all of your processes. Listen to them, get their feedback and use it.
Have your agent listen in on a call with the quality monitoring manager. This will help them become more aware of what they observing and grading.
13. Pair them up
Have your good and bad agents work together. Have them (and your center) learn what is working and use this information as an aid for training. This lets everyone improve their own performance by gaining the top performers’ knowledge and ideas.
There is always room for improvement in a call center. Just remember to keep empowering and encouraging your agents to build their confidence on this touchy subject. What tips have been helpful for you when trying to improve your agent performance?