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5 obstacles to great contact center agent experience

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  • Common obstacles to good agent experience include inadequate information about customers, reliance on multiple tools, and lack of timely guidance.
  • Contact centers can enhance agent experience by providing the right tools for the job.
  • RingCentral’s cloud-based solutions can streamline the job of contact center agents and ensure a better at-work experience.

Engaged contact center agents are usually productive agents. Unfortunately, some common obstacles get in the way of agents having a great experience on the job.

Are your contact center agents satisfied in their roles? If not, you run the risk of seeing a costly, high turnover rate that impacts the productivity of your entire team.

To avoid this, it’s important to identify any potential obstacles standing in the way of a positive work environment. Here are a few common ones, along with some tips on what you can do to eliminate them.

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1. Inadequate information about customers

Ideally, agents should have information about the customers calling in before the conversations actually begin. Successfully serving customers requires understanding who they are and what they’re looking for. If contact center agents don’t have this information when they answer a customer’s call, they won’t be adequately prepared to provide excellent customer service.

A potential solution to this issue is to adopt an Interactive Voice Response (IVR) system. This tool can help boost agent performance by capturing all pertinent customer information prior to the customer connecting to an agent.

With an IVR, the agent will have all the information needed to resolve the customer’s problems more efficiently. Not only does this improve customer experience, but also the agent’s job satisfaction.

2. Lack of timely guidance

Contact center agents need real-time feedback and guidance. While yearly or quarterly performance reviews and training may still have their place, real-time guidance is more helpful in terms of ensuring optimal performance and customer satisfaction.

If contact center agents are only being shown their successes or failures long after they happen, this doesn’t give them the opportunity to make improvements on the spot. Timely guidance is crucial to reinforcing successful actions as they happen.

Thankfully, there are tools available that can help optimize agent performance in real time. With the right software in place, contact centers can analyze customer service interactions as they take place and provide agents with relevant guidance as required.

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3. Reliance on multiple tools

According to a recent Asana survey, American business workers switch between 13 and 30 apps per day at work, and workers report spending nearly one hour a day looking for information between collaboration, storage, and messaging apps.

In the context of a contact center, that means agents must constantly open and close several programs to answer a question or resolve an issue, which can take up a lot of time and get in the way of a positive customer experience.

Instead, contact center agents should be using a consolidated, modern platform that will simplify the job. More specifically, adopting a cloud-based platform allows agents to quickly and easily interact with customers on various communication channels. In turn, this gives agents the ability to deal with various systems all from one integrative platform.

4. Poor performance

Failing to consistently reach goals and satisfy customer queries is a common issue in contact centers. Ultimately, contact centers want all customers to be satisfied with the service they receive, but failing to resolve issues in a timely manner can get in the way of achieving this objective.

Agent performance levels may hit a plateau that they just can’t seem to get over. To help agents get motivated to achieve greater results, management should step in with solutions. For instance, a reward system may be set up to give agents more incentive to strive for greater things at work.

Management can set goals and reward agents who reach them, or create challenges in which agents can participate. Further, quality assurance software should be implemented or upgraded to help management better monitor and coach agents, all from one innovative platform.

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5. Volume spikes

Effectively managing spikes in volume in your contact center is key to positive agent experiences. No agent wants a call queue that stretches out forever day after day.

Spikes in volume can happen any time, particularly due to seasonal increases. If not adequately equipped, contact centers can experience a disruption in operations. That said, hiring more staff may not be the sole solution to handling these temporary spikes in volume.

Instead, contact centers should adopt customer engagement tactics and modern technology to ensure customers are provided with impeccable service and agents are relieved of the stressors that come with an influx of call volume.

More specifically, digital technology platforms that incorporate omnichannel functionality can give customers other avenues to have their questions answered without bombarding agents with a seemingly endless flow of calls.

Eliminate obstacles to agent experiences with RingCentral solutions

Every contact center is unique, but there are certain issues within the industry that tend to be common among most centers. Most challenges that agents face at work are not entirely unique to their center.

That said, there are ways to overcome these obstacles that may stand in the way of agents having a good experience on the job, and implementing a modern digital platform from which agents can work should be a starting point.

RingCentral provides cutting-edge cloud-based solutions for contact centers designed to make the job of an agent as simple and straightforward as possible. Our modern solutions can integrate virtually all communication channels and streamline control center operations.

Reach out to a representative from RingCentral today to request your free demo.

Originally published Apr 12, 2022, updated Jan 08, 2024

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