Top 5 Issues Impacting Contact Centers Nationwide
Part 4: MAKING CONTACT CENTER CULTURE A PRIORITY
A Year in Review – Planning for 2018
By Chris Recio, Director of Contact Center and Advanced Applications
Having been in the Contact Center industry for some 20 years, I can say that the best operations I have seen have one thing in common:
In the past, the Contact Center has been viewed as a “necessary evil” when running a business. In fact, I once worked for a large hospitality organization that lacked the fundamental Contact Center operation, but relegated the needs for reservations and client inquires to basic hunt group processing.
Thankfully, a shift took place that exalted the Contact Center as a key business initiative in growing the business, and a foundation of that was customer experience. But none of this would have taken place had the culture of the Contact Center not been placed in high-regard across the business.
Today, I can say thankfully, I see the Contact Center taking its rightful place at the head of the table. Almost every rapidly growing and successful business I encounter has already realized the need to place a high emphasis on the Contact Center operation. They too understand how the culture of Contact Center influences the outcome of the business and most importantly the benefits to the customer.
Conceptually, it is not difficult to understand:
When every level of the business embraces the value of the Contact Center, this very shift in perception and culture can transform the Contact Center with great pride and a palpable desire to be the best.
Creating a vibrant and exciting work environment and culture is about creating loyalty and an eagerness to win.
Some key ways to foster culture are:
- Constant Communication – Daily, Weekly, Monthly
- Share Ideas – Great ideas come from those closest to the fire
- Create Reward & Recognition Programs
- Seek Agent Input
- Automate Tasks
- Remove You vs Me as a mantra – You get more success with Us and We
- Gauge the Agent Experience as critically as the Customer Experience
Of these, it’s my belief that the Agent Experience is as critical as the Customer Experience.
Ask yourself this simple question: What would make me want to stay here?
Contact Centers often spend a lot of time attempting to create a great customer experience, yet forget the most important part of that formula: The Agent.
It’s my strong opinion that we need to spend equal amounts of time and focus on the Agent Experience in addition to the Customer Experience.
Culture is not a simple task. It takes dedication and focus and consistency. You’ve got to set your mind to it. But once you do, you’ll soon have a culture where everyone wants to help each other while helping the customer.
This is the part 4 of a 5-part series of blog posts about the Top 5 Issues impacting most, if not all, Contact Centers in the industry. In this series, we will cover each of the issues in greater detail. If you missed any of them, be sure to catch up by clicking on their name below.
- OUT-OF-DATE, UNDERUTILIZED & ADVANCING TECHNOLOGY click here to read
- LACK OF ACCESS TO DATA & UNDERUTILIZED REPORTING OPPORTUNITIES click here to read
- LACK OF PROACTIVE CUSTOMER OUTREACH AND/OR FEEDBACK click to read
- MAKING CONTACT CENTER CULTURE A PRIORITY
- AGENT RETENTION & TURNOVER stay tuned
The Contact Center of the future is here now. Those that take this to heart will be far ahead of those that do not. The gap between these two groups will become wider as proactive operations outpace reactive operations.
As businesses review their year and prepare for 2018, it is very important to mitigate what’s ahead. We spend a great deal of time working with clients at deeper levels in their contact center operation through our CCSM (Contact Center Success Manager) program and found that their struggles boil down to the 5 issues to be pointed and discussed in this series. Stay tuned in the upcoming weeks!