Many contact centers currently face a deluge of manual processes, overwhelming contact volumes, and increasing customer demands.
In this environment, keeping tabs on employee engagement and ensuring it does not fall by the wayside is critical.
Otherwise, contact centers risk high attrition, absence, and burnout rates, only exacerbating their existing issues.
But how good a job are organizations doing in enhancing engagement and stemming these risks?
EvaluAgent wanted to find out, commissioning a study of over 300 contact center professionals across Europe and North America.
Here are some headline findings that the revered contact center QA vendor uncovered.
1. 47 Percent of all Contact Center Employees Plan to Leave Their Current Role Within a Year and a Half
For decades, contact centers have grappled with high attrition. Yet, this statistic highlights how it remains a pressing problem.
There are many possible reasons for the trend. Perhaps the most compelling is that many agents view contact center work as a job rather than a career.
Countering this perception will help to improve attrition.
Advertising the various roles in the contact center is an excellent start. Show that there are first-, middle-, and senior-level leadership roles alongside marketing, product, quality, compliance, and training positions.
But, the contact center must back that up with a keen development focus, demonstrating a genuine desire to help people become career-mobile.
Also, such development must closely align with coaching and quality assurance (QA). Create mutual workflows, which include setting objectives, monitoring performance, corrective coaching, and – ultimately – praise for improvement.
As a result, agents will always feel like they are progressing and growing in the role.
Finally, there is an element of giving agents a sense of pride in their job. This begins by listening to their ideas to improve service experiences, taking action, and showcasing the positive impact those have had.
2. 40 Percent of Contact Centers Are Using Spreadsheets for QA
Quality assurance done well increases agent motivation, changes behaviors, and isolates customer journey pain points.
However, in many contact centers, the QA playbook has laid still, gathering dust, as this statistic seemingly suggests.
Indeed, spreadsheets are slow, record only static information, and make it tricky to track various elements of employee performance effectively.
Nevertheless, stale spreadsheets are only indicative of the problem. QA software may transform engagement, but contact centers must lay the foundations first.
Again, this starts with ensuring everyone pulls together with a clear-cut strategy for isolating performance improvement issues, applying the appropriate training, and measuring its impact.
With that as a baseline, QA software may make the most profound difference.
3. 62 Percent of Non-Managers Believe the Customer Service Their Organization Provides Could Be Better
Commenting on this statistic, Jaime Scott, CEO of EvaluAgent, stated:
“We’ve witnessed first-hand how the pandemic put huge stress on contact center agents and managers. Roles became more demanding. Remote working strained infrastructures. Expanding channel preferences forced organizations to accelerate innovation.”
Maintaining this speed of innovation seems critical, as mitigating these issues by adding to the contact center workforce is tricky in the current recruitment environment and adds high costs.
Yet, balancing the development of digital and AI transformation projects with everyday firefighting is a significant challenge. Contact centers have always struggled to find a plan for the future.
Blocking time off in the diary is critical. Aim to do so during times in the week when contact volumes are often at their lowest. Use that time to push transformation projects forward.
For those between projects, consider the top demand drivers and isolate the root causes – conversational analytics is an invaluable tool here.
Next, fix the issue upstream. If that’s not possible, try enabling the customer to solve their problem autonomously. Finally – if that fails – consider how to help agents solve the problem faster.
Prioritizing the most prevalent contacts – or those that irritate customers and agents – ensures such a project makes quick gains and delivers the best possible service.
4. Only 23 Percent of Contact Center Managers Say Their Organization Uses AI
There are two significant takeaways from this statistic. First, many contact centers seem to view AI through the lens of bots only.
Indeed, a higher percentage – 24 percent – of survey participants state that they use conversational analytics, an AI-powered tool.
Moreover, CCaaS providers now bake AI into most of their tools, from the agent desktop to their knowledge base. As such, many are likely using AI without recognizing it.
The statistic perhaps also highlights reservations in the conscious use of AI. As does 2022 Gartner research, which suggests that bots only automate 1.6 percent of global customer conversations.
Such a finding is someway off its 2018 prediction that AI and machine learning will automate 40 percent of all such interactions by 2023.
However, attitudes are changing, with 28 percent saying AI is a tool they have in the pipeline.
In addition, the rise of GPT and innovations like SmartScore will enable a new appreciation for the sophistication of new AI models – which may encourage further deployments.
5. 72 Percent of All Employees Said They Would Be Comfortable With AI Solutions Measuring Their Performance and Providing Personal Development
This is another statistic that seemingly highlights a growing acceptance of AI in the workplace.
Yet, there is a flip side to this statistic. Indeed, 28 percent of agents are still somewhat uncomfortable with AI monitoring and advising them.
As such, the finding underlines the significance of engaging the team and selling them on the idea that the technology is here to help, not hinder them.
To do so, it is critical to give the team a role in deploying this technology. Do so, and they will have greater motivation to make it a success.
Download the Complete Report
Alongside these five findings, the report spotlights many others that give insight into the current state of employee engagement in contact center environments.
These statistics come packaged with commentary, which sheds light on the problems many service leaders face and possible solutions to circumvent them.
To discover more, download the report.