Who better to provide insight on contact center best practice than an agent, right?
There are over 40 000 contact centers in the US alone, which employs more than three million agents (ContactBabel US Contact Centers 2018-2022 The State of the Industry and Technology Penetration). That’s a lot of people. Now imagine how many more millions of agents exist globally.
But remember, contact centers are not one-size-fits-all. Each one is different. You get BPOs which change according to their client’s needs, inbound and outbound call centers, contact centers that specialize in customer service or support, pop-up call centers for political campaigns or charity drives.
What unifies them is their agents – all tens of millions of them. These are the faces and voices of your organization that deal directly with your customers.
We’ve probed the agent experience quite extensively here on the Zailab Blog and given you some invaluable advice on getting the best out of your agent’s performance and keeping them motivated. Now we want to take it one step further – we want the insider’s perspective.
Our inside (wo)man
Meet Siyasanga, Zailab support. Siyasanga (or Siya as she prefers to be known) has eight years of contact center experience under her belt.
Siya is one of our team of agents who acts as the first point of contact for end users needing support. These queries usually come in on the phone or via webchat and usually involve some sort of troubleshooting.
It can be a hectic environment, as these queries need to be dealt with quickly. Training and product knowledge are key, as are problem-solving skills and an ability to perform under extreme pressure.
So why did Siya choose this life? Like many contact center agents, she wanted to take her profession into her own hands and find a role that she could make her own. ‘I love questioning and finding solutions to problems. The challenge excites me,’ she says. ‘System troubleshooting and teaching someone how our software works are also something I totally enjoy – I love leaving a smile on someone’s face at the end of the day.’
Siya’s bubbly personality and can-do attitude make her a perfect fit for handling customer queries, but in her own words, ‘being able to put yourself in your client’s shoes’ is her best weapon. She’s made the customer experience the focus of her career and has become an indispensable member of team Zailab.
There’s plenty of research around how the key to a successful customer experience is a dedicated and motivated contact center agent, but we thought we’d ask Siya herself what it takes to makes clients happy.
‘Always ensure you treat the customer the way you would like to be treated. It is also very important to know the type of client you are dealing with as this will make interactions so much easier. Communication will impact the type of service you provide.
‘If the client is happy and still remembers you and the company after your interaction, then you know you’ve delivered excellent service,’ advises Siya. ‘You have to be passionate and go the extra mile for the client. I cannot stress this enough. They know when you are going the extra mile, even if their issue hasn’t been sorted. Knowing there’s a human being on the other side of the line doing everything they can always leave clients feeling valued and happy.’
There you have it.
So forget everything you’ve read or heard about workforce management, timekeeping, blocking Facebook and excessive call targets. If you want your agents to deliver exceptional customer service, give them the reins to their own career and let them do their thing.
You won’t regret it.
Want to read more about the inner workings of our business? Meet the ZaiLab queens of tech.