SOCAP International, a global customer care organization, recently hosted their Indy Fall Symposium 2022. Premier BPO attended as a First-Timer Orientation specialist. Here’s part two of our blog series with key takeaways form the event.

Recruitment in a Wage War

Companies are losing the battle with virtual agents due to the ‘wage war’. Virtual agents make it harder to retain talent because of cost-of-living factors. Virtual wage doesn’t match their employer, which is why brick-and-mortar is so important as it creates a sense of community. By increasing the agent wage, you remove yourself from a virtual wage war, and attrition automatically goes down.

There’s still the matter of hiring the right person and humanizing the onboarding process. You have to optimize the hiring profile by building a people’s first team. The emphasis should be on establishing the appropriate wage, then designing, testing, and learning from the process. Keep in mind:

  • Profile

  • Onboarding

  • Relationships

  • Environments

  • Attrition Win

The Recruiter, Interviewer, and Trainer can call the selected agent to tell them how excited they are about his/her joining. Companies can also create a buddy system and place an experienced tenured agent with a new hire for their support.

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Workforce Management (WFM)

The focusROI is WFM. 80% time of supervisors should be spent coaching and engaging their agents. Employee engagement equals productivity. Some best practices include:

  • Consolidated/Shared Service Models/Organizational Structure

  • Onboarding, Training & QA

  • WFO Principles

  • Work from home

  • Performance-based Management

  • Employee Engagement

How to optimize your WFM processes step by step

  1. Staffing – Based on forecasted requirements and capacity planning
  2. Define the Customer Journey – End-to-end and modify workflows as you go
  3. Enhance Leadership – Improve organizational structure to meet current needs/levels of service
  4. Establish Reporting Dashboards – Across all levels of the organization
  5. Develop a People Management Plan – Specific to “temporary” staff hiring and management
  6. Standardize Performance Management – Focus on improving performance
  7. Enhance Quality Assurance/CSAT Programs – Refine the QA and CSAT surveys

Agent and Employee Engagement

For on-premise workspaces, it is critical to establish a work environment where employees would want to return. Companies need to invest in top-notch equipment, provide amenities and perks like snack and drink bars, and designate someone to be in charge of fun activities (company culture days), etc. These will not only enhance engagement but also help build a team-focused environment. Reduce attrition by enhancing the employee lifecycle through better human experiences. This will in turn help meet KPIs through tenure

  • Decrease agent stress levels by increasing morale and engagement to improve performance. One solution is to remove the attendance policy.
  • Make the agent feel valued by building a relationship between the agent and supervisor. Weekly one-on-one meetings can help achieve that.
  • Praise agents at all levels instead of focusing on the top performer. Appreciate them for keeping commitments, even minor ones.
  • Attrition and absenteeism numbers help gauge employee engagement levels, so invest in keeping those on the lower side.
  • Applying Cloud Contact Center as a Service (CCaaS) for greater insights into statistics, better CX, and agent productivity.

Solutions for Combating Agent Loneliness

  1. Keep cameras on in virtual meetings – Build in visual interaction
  2. Asking about the best call and worst calls agents have taken that day
  3. Create a virtual Lunch Room and virtual scavenger hunts
  4. Have background noise of a call center, white noise
  5. Create Culture Clubs and employee resource groups (IRG’s etc.)
  6. For example, “Working Moms”
  7. Have agents use the same background to make them feel like they are together
  8. Voluntary coffee meet ups – randomly pair agents to talk for 15 minutes with people from other departments
  9. Team competition: video game “The Outbreak” where the team that takes the most “steps from walking” wins.

Sessions Referenced

  1. A New Perspective on Managing Top Performers – Nate Spears, COO, ClearSource
  2. ROI of a Call Center – Bill Gosling Outsourcing
  3. Disruptive Innovation
  4. Finding the Sweet Spot: The Intersection of Peak Operational Efficiency & Highest Level CX
  5. Bringing Innovation to Life Through Human Operations

Premier BPO Insight for Businesses From SOCAP 22

Our experts recommend the use of a blended workforce, especially one that can operate out of brick-and-mortar workspaces. This is a win-win solution that Premier BPO offers and it comes with its own set of benefits in the current economic scenario; such as:

  • diminishing the challenge of the ‘wage war’
  • helping reduce attrition numbers
  • providing more diverse and skilled talent
  • ability to operate simultaneously in different time zones
  • catering to various client types

Also read:

SOCAP Recap Indy Fall Symposium 2022 Part 1


About Premier BPO

Premier BPO seeks to be a seamless extension of its client’s business processes. This is done by immersing itself in the client’s values and objectives and by providing dedicated resources that serve as a blended workforce within the client’s organization. The company offers co-sourcing, a hybrid approach to outsourcing, across multiple functions for several industries through its global sites. Premier BPO has invested in security and compliance processes including obtaining PCI certification and has been serving clients since 2003.

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