As the COVID-19 lockdown restrictions slowly start to ease, businesses are now turning their attention to reopening and looking forward. Organisations, particularly contact centres are now operating in a world that already looks different to the one we left a few months ago.
It’s an everchanging landscape, where contact centres now need to be thinking strategically rather than tactfully, so we thought it timely to team up with our partners NICE inContact, to deliver an insightful webinar on how you can navigate and adapt your contact centre throughout the next phase of events the lockdown restrictions may bring.
We’ve summarised the key points from our webinar in this article:
The pandemic has forced contact centres to trial new ways of working including working from home (WFH), which will most likely continue in this current climate, where according to one of the polls we ran during the webinar, 35% of you are considering allowing your agents to continue working from home post COVID.
WFH has been a new experience for most contact centres.
According to research carried out a month ago, only 10% of employers had already had some experience implementing a work from home strategy, compared to a staggering 50% who had no experience.[i]
The benefits of working from home has been spoken about many times pre-pandemic. From an agent perspective, some of the benefits include:
In fact, according to statistics, working from home means an 80% better retention rate for contact centre agents[i].
A WFH home model allows agents more flexibility with their work/life balance. Stats also show that this way of working means 57% of agents are more likely to endorse their employer[ii] and therefore stay with the company for longer. In turn, a reduction in retention rates will help contact centres save time, money and resource spent hiring and training new staff.
Looking after the well-being of your agents in turns means looking after your customers. Ensuring employees are treated in a way that stimulates loyalty, encourages them to serve customers well.
And let’s not forget, that from a business perspective, one of the major benefits of working from home means organisations can reduce their real estate footprint saving a large sum each year.
Although WFH may have positive benefits, stats also show that 71% of contact centre managers have said it has impacted their customer experience[iii]. This may be to do with the beginning of lockdown when contact centres were struggling to get everything set up in order to work remotely.
Most of these issues, such as agent devices not working or configurations not being set up correctly, have been addressed or acknowledged.
What we are seeing now is contact centres struggling to maintain and monitor the agent experience whilst working remotely, where according to another poll we ran, 22% of you are lacking full visibility into your service quality and productivity.
As more organisations consider working from home post pandemic due to the benefits it can bring to a workforce, consider the following steps to help get yourself set up more permanently:
Related Content: Download our Work From Home Agent Checklist
At the start of lockdown, businesses were working hard to maintain business continuity and move their agents to a work from home model.
One of the solutions we offered at the beginning of March was CXone@home – a cloud contact centre solution. CXone@home is a special offer specifically generated during COVID to ensure business continuity and elasticity and is being offered via 60 days no commitment no contract offering.
Since lockdown has started to ease, we are now seeing customers taking this offer up not from a rapid deployment perspective, but more of a strategic one.
Contact centres are now evaluating the tactical solutions they made a few months ago in the rush to get their workforce remote and are now seeing the limitations their current set up has.
CXone@home, as mentioned above is a cloud contact centre platform. The benefits of using a cloud platform have been spoken about greatly. Some of the benefits include:
Related Content: Download The Inner Circle Guide to Cloud Based Contact Centre Solutions
Does your existing ACD support remote agents?
Are your current agent device requirements sustainable?
Do your agents and supervisors have full app access whilst working from home?
The challenge that most organisations may now come across is finding the balance between protecting the factors, processes and change which supports the core of their organisation, whilst also being open minded to new methods and making sure this is met with the same speed we have seen throughout this pandemic.
Although it may be tempting to return to the familiar, it’s also important to remember the innovation which was seen over the past few months and making sure we are keeping this going by evaluating what has worked and what hasn’t for success going forward.
We may have been forced into this path of remote working and it may have happened a lot quicker than most of us were comfortable with, but now that the pandemic has shone the light on a new way of working which some may say was always inevitable, it’s the organisations who ride the wave and accept that change is constant, that will be in the strongest position to succeed.
If you didn’t get a chance to catch the webinar, then catch it on replay! >
If you would like more information on any of the topics or technologies mentioned in this article, then please get in touch with our team >
Publish Date: June 10, 2020
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