North American Customer Service Management Association

Support for Contact Center Professionals

Phase 6 Strategy - Step 4 Amenities

Workplace Amenities

Workplace amenities are part of the entire value proposition. Employees today are faced with not only evaluating benefits but also workplace amenities.

Prof. Jeffrey Pfeffer, of Stanford University, studies workplaces extensively and says such added benefits of amenities are useful only where there’s a positive corporate culture that values employees and rewards their work beyond just attractive perks. “What matters is whether companies let employees make decisions, offer them reasonable job security, and treat them with respect. Not whether they give them free food,” he says.
Those are nice things, and they may represent the corporate attitude, but if that’s all you do, they’re meaningless to employees. The goal of workplace amenities is to keep agents at work working and/or eliminate employee distractions. Creating amenities isn’t difficult if it answers one of those two goals.
To Make Employees Lives Easier

Less likely to leave the office: On-site childcare, dry cleaning, hair salon, fitness room and free food. These things allow agents to focus on work by making their personal life a bit easier.

Some perks are more effective than others. Services that are more personal and directly impact the agent’s health like ergonomic furniture and personal trainers on-site can have a dramatic effect on productivity. Agents feel cared for and valued.
The most valued workplace luxuries are time-saving incentives. Today everyone wants more time and greater quality of life. Running around doing errands takes up time and is a mindless task. Time is more valuable than money for many. How can you give your agents more time?
Keep in mind, extra services and perks are not replacements for a mismanaged contact center, bad morale or poor culture. Those need to be righted first before the perks will have meaning and value.
Top Ten Workplace Amenities

There is no limit to what you can think up for workplace amenities. These are the main categories: Food/Refreshments, Gathering and Collaboration Areas (lounges), Fitness and Recreation, Work-Life Balance, Commerce and Information Centers.

Here are the Top Ten Luxuries:
1. On-Site Massage includes chair and massage therapist. Work is stressful.
2. MetroNap Energy Pod – take a nap in a zero-gravity recliner with soft music. Recharge your batteries for the rest of the day.
3. Agents who work overtime get stressed about cleaning their own home. Send out the cleaning ladies – professional cleaners to your employee’s homes twice a month.
4. On-site Doctor’s office – Chase, SAS, and many others provide a full- service doctor’s office. Agents can have their blood pressure checked, get prescriptions refilled, and even blood work completed and never leave the office. All free of charge. A huge time saver.
5. The Treadmill Desk – walk and type your day away. Lose weight and improve overall health.
6. Webcam-monitored childcare –Agents can log on remotely via computer or phone and peek in at playtime or visually connect with their children.
7. On-site Beverage Bar – coffee and juice beverages.
8. Organic cuisine – providing locally grown organic food is a nice variation to the traditional contact center pizza lunch.
9. On-site laundry/dry cleaning – a big time saver, keeps your agents looking and smelling nice.
10. Scooters – Some contact centers are on a large sprawling corporate property, called a “campus” and scooters help agents get to other buildings where amenities are housed, like the fitness room (gym), daycare etc. easily during their breaks or lunch.
Time: How to Give More Time

How do you give agents more time without adding to PTO time?

Flex Time! Let agents choose the days/times and be flexible with the schedule.Workforce management tools can help manage the schedule. Life happens and agents are people and need to take care of personal business. Making it easy for agents to do so will eliminate employees sitting at their desks worrying about something they need to attend to. This will reduce the amount of time that is taken off, planned or unplanned. Your willingness to work with them shows you value them. Flex-time is free; offer it up and watch agents light up.
Do Amenities Make a Difference?

Remember, the goals of workplace amenities are to keep agents in the building, eliminate what distracts them and make their life easier.

If, after you implement amenities, agents are using them then you have succeeded. When employees can concentrate without worry they are by far the most productive. When agents know that their children are safe they will happily agree to work overtime when asked. Amenities help drive the turnover rate down and keep agents in the building. Amenities help create an inspirational work environment – a place that everyone wants to be. Yes, they make a difference!

Tips!

1. Can’t choose among all the choices for amenities? ASK! Ask your employees what amenities they would like, love and enjoy using. They will tell you.
2. Create community. Have your daily team huddle in the café instead of the contact center floor. Meet your team in the café for morning beverages and team news.

Take the Next Step!

There is no wrong answer when creating workplace amenities. It all depends on what your goals are and why you want to offer them. Amenities come in all forms, from gourmet lunches, fancy lounges, personal trainers and fitness centers, a company store and more. In creating a strategy for workplace amenities, focus on what you want them to accomplish, survey your agents for suggestions and determine the most feasible. A gourmet lunch may not be possible if there is no cafeteria but you could provide gourmet sandwiches in the lounge. Today people are overwhelmed with personal responsibility. Anything you, the employer can do to make it easier sets your contact center apart from the rest, reduces the turnover, and improves morale and satisfaction by both customer and agents.

Work Space Vendors

Contact Center Furniture

Commercial Interior Designer

NACSMA Consultant

Furniture

Specialized Office Systems offers customized solutions to deliver printing, promotional products, apparel, office supplies and business furniture to multiple locations across the country. You will receive the personalized service you want and the attention to detail you need.

Interior Designer

Cresa Commercial founded in 1993 was convinced that representing tenants exclusively was the best way to go. Not only would it give our clients the kind of objective, unbiased advice they might not get elsewhere, but it would also give us a unique offering in the real estate marketplace.

Consultant

The North American Customer Service Management Association (NACSMA) assists Service Center professionals with improving the delivery of Customer Care to their clients by providing a collaborative networking approach to operational issues.