There are all sorts of tricks and strategies to fight call center attrition – but we say drop the gimmicks and go for real love.
High attrition is relatively standard in the contact center. It’s also a massive, screaming red flag, and something we should do everything we can to address. Because attrition is a direct signifier of deep unhappiness – and the only way to take on a profound issue is to make profound changes.
The nice part? These techniques don’t have to be hard to implement – and they benefit you in many ways beyond an improved attrition figure.
1. Consider letting people work from home
Aside from money issues, two of the biggest stressors agents tend to face involve transport and family. Some spend significant amounts of time and money just getting to and from work – and that’s not counting the danger they’re in as a byproduct of being on the roads.
On top of that, many have the worry of leaving their children and other dependents at home without supervision for lengthy periods. It doesn’t exactly make for a mind-on-the-job mentality.
If your circumstances allow for it, consider letting your agents work from home. With today’s technology (especially, cough, ours), all you need is a computer, a headset and an Internet connection – and team leaders have just as much visibility and control, so there’s no need to worry about losing a grip on your organization.
And the difference this can make in terms of quality of life for your agents is massive. Just take a watch of this for example:
And do you know who gets thanked for that quality of life? You do.
2. Help your agents look after what’s important to them
Further to the family point above, if you can get involved in your agents’ lives (obviously not in an invasive way), you’ll do a lot to earn legitimate loyalty. Sponsor or subsidize a crèche for their little ones. Provide life, disability and funeral insurance to help cover their loved ones in case something unthinkable happens.
Better yet, get stuck into improving their communities. Donate to nonprofits that operate in their areas. Contribute to charities that mean a lot to them. Set aside a few special days to put in time as a company doing good work.
Showing you care is a top-notch way of cutting down call center attrition. And doing this shows you care in a way that a foosball table never will.
3. Go the whole hog on education
Feeling like you’re developing, growing, flourishing? That goes a long way to generating a sense of meaning in life. And for many people, a sense of meaning can be hard to come by in a world full of limited options.
Training is a mainstay of many call centers – and it makes good sense, because it’s an obvious win–win. Your agents get to enjoy watching their careers expand, and you get to benefit from their increased knowledge and confidence.
But there’s something else to look to here: the value of general education. Which is to say, consider letting your agents spend a percentage of their working hours pursuing courses outside of their job descriptions – indeed, outside of the industry even. If one wants to try their hand at horticulture, or another wants to break into software development, help them.
This offers a number of benefits. For one, it generates tremendous goodwill among your staff, because – again – it shows you truly, honestly care about their lives aside from their bottom-line value to the company. People don’t forget that.
It also goes a long way toward making you an employer of choice. This is a major plus, because the quality of your hires is hugely correlated with the quality of your customer experience, the quality of your company culture and, fittingly, the rate of your attrition.
Because when you let people know you want the best for them, and you aren’t trying to trap them, they tend to stick around longer, they tend to be more loyal, and they tend to give you their very best.
And that’s priceless.