Customer Experience Center Agents Challenges in 2017 and Employee Engagement Solutions

Working in a fast-paced call center can be both stressful and challenging for agents. Dealing with frustrated customers, sticking to strict work timelines, and reaching performance goals are all hurdles that contact center agents have to deal with on a daily basis. This is why employee disengagement and demotivation is usually highly prevalent in this industry.     

2017 is no exception for these agents who have been facing issues since day one at the job. The same old problems keep on resurfacing and that's because nothing is being done to put an end to them. So, here’s a breakdown of the few struggles that your contact center agents are dealing with today:

  1. Lack of Motivation: Contact centers struggle to keep their employees engaged and motivated on a daily basis. The lack of engagement, incentives, and recognition leads to low efficiency and a big shortage of excitement for the job.  

  2. Poor Adherence: Agents are more often than not over-worked which is one of the main reasons why contact centers suffer from poor adherence. Work overload reduces agent productivity by a staggering 68% (Cornerstone) which makes it all the more difficult to keep up with schedule adherence.

  3. High Absenteeism: Unplanned absences greatly impact the contact centre’s ability to meet the required performance goals. Yet, studies have shown that 67% of agents are currently unhappy and disengaged at their job (Aflac) which makes it 37% more likely that the rate of absenteeism will rise (Queens School of Business).

  4. Low productivity: Stress is one of the biggest reasons for decreased productivity at contact centers with almost $500 billion lost because of it (American Psychological Association). At the same time, employee disengagement makes it less likely that agents will strive to support and meet the performance goals put into place.

These challenges have major setbacks for your contact center and thus need to be addressed as soon as possible. The best way to accomplish this is to take action in order to engage and interact with your agents in a dynamic, fun, and efficient way.

Various gamification platforms that use social media, game mechanics, and recognition concepts to enhance the agent's journey and in turn, improve your call centre's work environment are available for implementation. These features combined tap into our society’s new way of communication and help agents become engaged and entertained at work.

The notion of social media creates highly interactive platforms through which individuals, communities, and organizations can share, interact, participate and engage. It introduces substantial and pervasive changes to communication between businesses, organizations, communities, and individuals.

As for the use of gamification which employs game design elements that are used in non-game contexts, it improves user engagement, organizational productivity, learning, employee recruitment, as well as performance.

Lastly, recognition concepts let employees know that their hard work is valued. It doesn't have to cost anything, it can be done on a daily basis and the results can have a long lasting impact.

With the implementation of an employee engagement program that takes into consideration these three essential factors, your agents will slowly but surely discover what it’s like to work in an engaging, motivational and collaborative environment.

Leila Mourtada