Agents want two things.
First, to login to the contact center platform and always know what status they are in. Old systems have agents’ login to a 3rd party application that connects them to a desk phone, which can leave them guessing “Am I logged in?” Look for SaaS based contact center platforms that utilize softphones. Headsets plug into the PC and the agent logs into the contact center platform through the web browser and can see very easily what the status is: Logged in, logged out, lunch, training – no more AUX codes. Make it easy for agents to use. Supervisors also can clearly see the status of agents – no matter where in the world they may reside.
Second, agents want to see their own personal metrics – live in a dashboard. How many calls did they take today? What are their talk times? Agents want to see all the metrics they are being evaluated on right at their desk, in real time. Tomorrow’s whiteboard report is too late. If you want agents to improve, give them immediate feedback. Giving them an effective tool lets them see in real time how they are doing. Reporting today’s results tomorrow is just so last year!
Callers want two things.
First, callers want a simple IVR. Customers who have already tried to use self-service but still need assistance know that the next step is the dreaded phone call. When the customer makes the call, they want to talk with someone immediately. Callers do not want to spend the next 15 minutes tangled up in an interactive voice response system(IVR). Many companies misapply the use of an IVR. If it is intended for self-service, make that clear. It if is intended to direct calls to agents, make the IVR simple with a short menu. This will eliminate the frustration callers have with poorly designed IVR’s and will drive up customer satisfaction immensely when done right. Leave self-service for websites or specific 800 numbers intended for self-service.
The second thing caller’s want is to complete account authentication once. If you ask for the account number via the IVR, don’t ask again when the agent connects. If the agent needs to transfer the call, don’t make the customer start all over. Some of this duplication is due to processes, some due to technology, some because of policy but this small thing makes callers crazy. Companies look stupid to customers because agents keep asking the same questions and the caller’s request is still unresolved. Ask once and address requests quickly.