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Hussam Dwairi
Vice President for Tech & Digital Transformation
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Faran Niaz
CEO & Founder

Leaders and Staff Share Insights on CU Contact Center Operations - Strategic Contact - Blog

Leaders and Staff Share Insights on CU Contact Center Operations

My last post took an analytical perspective on the state of credit union contact centers based on our proprietary Efficiency and Effectiveness Evolution (E3) Spectrums® tool. We also keep our fingers on the CU pulse through interactions with leaders and assessment project work that delivers direct input from frontline staff through surveys.

In CU contact center surveys and forums, we gathered input about agent location (and work-from-home specifically!) and learned some interesting things:

  • Hybrid (a mix of onsite and remote agents) is the predominant model today (70%) and will be in the future (76%). Roughly one-fifth of centers are (and will continue to be) exclusively onsite.
  • In the most common hybrid approach, some agents work exclusively onsite, some work exclusively from home. Agents who work from home must satisfy defined criteria.
  • Local only is the most common work from home (WFH) model, but centers are increasingly allowing broader geographies for remote agents.
  • Few centers are fully empowered to define staffing location policies; most centers must fit in with credit-union wide policies to some degree.
  • WFH is a strong tool for recruiting and hiring and a strong majority believe WFH staff can perform as well as in-house staff. Nonetheless, training, coaching and development, and engagement of WFH agents pose greater challenges.

Hiring, retention, and attendance remain daunting challenges for most centers. In a discussion forum I hosted, attendees shared their creative tactics:

  • They’ve boosted insights into the requirements and nature of the job by capturing a “day in the life” for prospective recruits.
  • They’ve sped up the timeline from application to offer (often working closely with HR partners!).
  • They’ve leveraged gamification, friendly/fun competition, and an assortment of “carrots” to drive engagement and attendance.
  • They’ve bumped pay and incentives with an eye toward retaining valued employees.

To complement the “top down” perspective, our surveys of frontline staff address a variety of topics including hiring, training, time to proficiency, knowledge sources, FCR, coaching, engagement, and career path. While results vary based on the center’s size, maturity, and culture, some interesting themes emerge:

  • Agents have a clear understanding of their positions. The hiring process works!
  • While training may be informal (e.g., one-to-one, on-the-job training), staff get comfortable quickly when they start handling contacts.
  • While time to proficiency varies, most agents attain competency within 3 months.
  • Most agents lean heavily on peers, emails, and desktop documents (“cheat sheets”) for information; their reliance on knowledge tools is low. Their inability to find the right information represents their biggest hindrance to achieving first contact resolution (FCR).
  • Coaching is too varied and infrequent; few meet the best practices targets consistently.
  • Credit unions achieve above average employee engagement relative to other contact center industry segments. However, like most centers, they hit below the mark in terms of compensation, rewards, and recognition.
  • Agents see greater career opportunities with other departments within the credit union than they do within the contact center.


Publish Date: March 28, 2023

2023 Buyers Guide Knowledge Management


Contact Center Innovation Channel and Digital Transformation Enabler
Providing Research, Training and Consulting related to Customer Experience Delivery, support Project Management by Unit or Corporate.
Have the ability to conduct research for specific needs.
Having deep knowledge on the Digital Interaction/Contact Center / Omni Channel / CRM various Stakeholder and Emergency Response ecosystem in Indonesia.


Combines knowledge management with call support as continue improvement.

eGain Corporation

eGain Knowledge + AI
eGain's knowledge management software, powered with Case-Based Reasoning, an Artificial Intelligence technology, lets you provide intranet or extranet access to the common knowledge base, enabling contact center agents to provide distinctive, productive, and brand-aligned experiences in every interaction, across all channels and touchpoints.

eGain Corporation

eGain Knowledge + AI
eGain Knowledge+AI™, the top-rated, analyst-awarded knowledge management software, guarantees quality customer service by infusing your customer service agents with knowledge, making all agents as productive as your best ones. By providing agents and other users a range of ways to get to information from the common knowledge base, it ensures fast, consistent, and accurate answers.


FuzeDigital offers an affordable yet comprehensive knowledge base to answer your consumers' and staff questions. When assistance is needed, our email management system ensures your timely and accurate delivery of responses. Used by companies large and small that seek to deflect common questions while providing exceptional support.


Happitu is your customer support team’s personal coach. It guides your team through every interaction with custom workflows, responsive scripting, and dynamic help topics.

Documentation in Happitu is automated, detailed, and consistent. Go beyond handle times and service levels with the rich insights of Happitu – from granular interaction data to aggregate data and trends – you get the complete CX journey!

We intentionally built the Happitu Workflow Designer with your customer support team in mind. Using our intuitive tools that provide quick and safe iteration, you eliminate the need to involve IT or Development. Yes, you will no longer have to dread submitting a change request to Devin from IT!

Try it free for 45 days!


Knowmax is a knowledge management software for enterprises. Customer service of any organization can leverage this tool to create, curate & distribute the knowledge at assisted as well as digital channels promoting self service.


Knowledge Management software
livepro are experts in Customer Experience Knowledge Management and are passionate about improving customer experience. livepro is feature-rich yet easy to use, delivering answers to agents – not long complex documents to dig through. This makes customer service quicker, easier and more efficient. Staff require next to no training on complex procedures thanks to livepro’s intuitive design, which brings confidence up and training costs down.


ProcedureFlow is a step by step visual guide that supports agents as they navigate company processes. With a knowledge management solution that simplifies complex information, employees can spend less time searching and focus on what they do best. ProcedureFlow’s simple and intuitive platform enables contact centers to quickly and easily create, maintain, and update company processes in real time. With ProcedureFlow, teams can work more efficiently, better serve customers, and drive results that matter most to their business.


Knowledge: For Your Team
Synthetix’s intelligent knowledge base software, Knowledge: For Your Team empowers your agents whilst fuelling your digital customer service channels.

With one centralised source of knowledge that is simple to use and update, providing customers with the right information – whether that be through self-service or direct – is efficient and always consistent.

With their own integrated knowledge base that recommends articles based on what they’re typing and decision tree technology that produces scripting, agents are more productive and Average Handling Times can be reduced by 25%.

View more from Strategic Contact

Recent Blog Posts:
Leaders and Staff Share Insights on CU Contact Center OperationsMarch 28, 2023
Surveys Highlight CC OpportunitiesNovember 12, 2020
Is Your Contact Center Ready for Novel Coronavirus-like Scenarios?February 26, 2020
Does Your Technology Help (or Hinder) Agent Engagement?February 5, 2020
Make 2020 the Year of the AgentDecember 3, 2019
Get Excited About Self-ServiceAugust 14, 2019

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