Research has shown that the more connected a representative is to the brand they represent, the greater the probability that they will be able to effectively communicate with current and potential customers about the product’s benefits and features. Many companies recommend that their associates use the products the company sells as one of the ways to accomplish this goal.
The Center For Client Retention (TCFCR) recently conducted a benchmarking study to find out how connected contact center employees felt to the brands they were representing and how effective they thought the inter-departmental communication was. Here are some of the findings:
- Slightly less than 50 percent of the respondents envisioned working in a contact center environment to be their career. Therefore it’s important for management to create career paths whereby representatives feel more committed to the brands/company
- While most representatives felt some kind of connection to the brand, there are tremendous opportunities to increase that connection. Better educating associates about the history of the brands, offering additional insight on production facilities and having the associates more involved with competitive research will increase brand connection and awareness
- In general, communication within contact centers is lacking and one of the key goals of communication should be to make the associates feel that their job is important to the success of the company. Associates become frustrated when they are not notified of new promotions, products, etc. While brands sometimes do not provide contact center management with enough notice, it is important to communicate back to marketing how the associates feel when a consumer poses a question or concern that is unfamiliar to them
- Associates feel that contact center management stresses reducing the length of the call more than increasing the quality of the conversation. Associates do feel they are loyal to the company and want to provide quality service to consumers. Getting the associates more involved with how their roles impact the brand will make the associates feel more valued. Additionally, having the associates become an integral part of the training and coaching process will ultimately enable them to deliver better customer service.
Contact center associates are the face and voice of a company. It is important for them to be strong brand advocates, feel good about their career path and to be evaluated on their effectiveness in building customer relationships, and not just on how efficiently they handle their calls. Efficiency is not necessarily the best indicator of success. Customers appreciate associates that appreciate them. Associates appreciate management that supports and appreciates their exciting and sometimes challenging role. What can YOU do to support YOUR call center associates?