7 Things to Know About Employing Remote Call Center Agents

It’s common for call centers to have at-home, remote agents.  Convenience and lower cost are just two of the benefits to having employees who work from home. What do call centers need to know about employing and managing their agents who aren’t in-house, though? Read on to find out.

1. Hiring remote workers can potentially cut business costs by limiting office space.

2. By allowing agents to work where they’re most comfortable, productivity can go up, according to Forbes. The key to this is hiring...

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Call Center Week - Reviews and Interviews- Part IV

Businesses are seeking innovative contact center solutions that enable them to engage customers via an expanded range of functionalities. Companies want their multichannel campaigns to deliver a consistent yet individualized message across every touch point, and even have the capability to bridge the gap between digital and print media.  Organizations also wish to be able to track calls, send out SMS and voice broadcast messages and deploy predictive dialing solutions that offer...

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Call Center Week - Reviews and Interviews Part III

Keeping employees engaged and motivated are the most important factors in establishing and maintaining a productive, effective contact center workforce.  Intelligent onboarding and consistent leadership are critical elements in the process. Some people in the industry also think of gamification as a powerful set of solutions to decrease turnover and improve productivity while others remain skeptical. In the next in our series of reports from Call Center Week, we offer perspectives from a pioneer...

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Four Key Attributes of Successful Call Center Agents

Despite dire predictions that self-service will render the call center agent obsolete, the opposite is true.  Call center employment continues to grow at a healthy clip.  According to recent research published by leading industry thinker Paul Stockford of Saddletree Research, the U.S. call center industry added nearly 52,000 new jobs.  Some of this growth is attributable to the staffing of health insurance exchange contact centers as a result of the Affordable Care Act, but much of it is...

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How Cloud Technology Facilitates Communication During a Disaster

 

August 13, 2013

Disasters can arise anywhere, at any time. And now, we are now in the middle of hurricane season—with an estimated 20 storms predicted to pummel the Atlantic states throughout the summer and fall.

Most executives shudder at the thought of what would happen in the event that a data center shuts down for even a few seconds because of a natural disaster; that’s because during these critical times your customers often depend on you the most to be available whenever and wherever they...

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Increase Your Contact Center ROI with Great Customer Service

 

When guests enter your home, the goal is to make them feel comfortable enough to stay—so that the next time they come, they feel even more at ease. These interactions should grow with time, so that eventually each guest feels completely relaxed in your space.

Your contact center is no different. And if you intend to increase your ROI, it is important to think of your long run as well as short term interactions. The intention is to keep a customer coming back for life as repeat business is the...

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What's New at Call Center Week 2013

 

Acknowledged as one of the industry’s influential events, Call Center Week took place in Las Vegas June 10-14. Approximately 1,500 contact center professionals (including expert personnel over 125 exhibitors) convened at Caesars Palace to exchange ideas, explore emerging technologies, hear from leading authorities in the field, and discuss what’s working in contact centers across a broad range of industries.  Multi-channel solutions, analytics, voice of the customer measurement, mobile...

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Turnover a New Leaf-Reduce Attrition & Improve Agent Engagement,

The call center agent’s job isn’t easy. Most of the day is spent interacting with customers and keeping them satisfied. When time permits agents may be asked to complete training and coaching activities that enable them to do their job well.

Finding the time to train, coach and even communicate with agents remains a challenge for many centers.  As transaction types become more complex, the agent learning curve has become even steeper. Many agents become frustrated with the endless grind, lack of...

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Mobile WFM: Defining Success for Next Generation Contact Centers

Many contact centers now draw their staff from the millennial generation who largely use smartphones and tablets for their personal and social communication. For these progressive organizations, adopting a mobile WFM solution is often the defining element in successful operation. Leveraging  mobile Web-enabled devices to connect contact center managers, supervisors and agents can increase efficiency as well as staff and customer...

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Coaching Call Center Agents to Impact the Customer Experience

In a recent call center agent productivity study conducted by Ventana Research, 81% of those call center leaders polled cited improving agent performance as a top priority in their organization. So, if improving agent performance is a key initiative for most call centers, and coaching is a proven contributor to positively impacting agent performance , why do so many call centers continue to struggle with providing agents with enough effective coaching?

It certainly isn’t for a lack of effort. In...

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Moments of Truth: Key Trends that Impact How Your Call Center Delivers in the Clutch

“Character may be manifested in the great moments, but it is made in the small ones.” ~Phillips Brooks Call center agents hold the power of your brand promise in their hands. The moment of truth can be when customers need to talk to an agent after exhausting self-service options.  Or, it can be the accumulation of experiences across all channels. As problem calls increase and interaction points expand, companies need to adjust their customer experience strategies to ensure agents are equipped to...

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Call Center Home Agent Model

Over the last ten years, interest in remote agent contact center models has steadily increased. For example, attendance at the February 2012 Remote Agent Summit increased by 30% over 2011. And home agent models are not limited to the United States and Canada. Several firms are operating home agent models in Europe and a UK version of the US Remote Agent Summit is planned for July. Michele Rowan of At Home Customer Contacts which hosts the Remote Agent Summit and Workshops reports that:

Survey...

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Workforce Challenges and Opportunities for Today’s Small Contact Center

When you hear the term “contact center” today, the image that may come to mind is a large operation with hundreds of agents in headsets busy on calls.  However, if you were to visit the most typical call center, you would only see a couple of dozen frontline staff.  That’s because most call centers are actually small in size with three out of four centers employing fewer than 20 agents. 

According to Pelorus Group statistics, 75% of call centers have between 1 – 20 staff and another 15% have...

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Contact Center Performance Productivity

Knowlagent recently surveyed 312 call center executives, managers or supervisors. Respondents represented a range of company sizes and types.  A majority of companies report tracking the obvious things that keep an employee offline – such as absenteeism, tardiness, and log-in times. Many track some of the more hidden issues that take up call center agents' days.

-- Close 50% of the companies track time spent on training. -- 40 % report they track the amount of “idle time” agents spend waiting...

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Social Media and Informal Learning

According to the comScore 2010 U.S. Digital Year in Review, social networking sites accounted for 12% of all time spent online in 2010, and the average American spent more than 14 hours watching online videos in December, a 12% increase over the previous year.

As social media continues to gain popularity in our culture.  Many call center agents are comfortable with social learning in their personal lives and, as a result, more and more companies are adopting social and informal learning platforms...

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