Agents are the most important component of your call center. Without them, it is impossible to provide quality service to customers and maintain a positive brand reputation. With an average turnover rate of 30 to 45 percent, call center agent attrition is an ongoing struggle that is both costly and stressful. If you currently struggle with high agent turnover, the first step to fixing it is to understand why agents choose to leave.
To help you gain control of agent attrition, we’ve put together a list of seven reasons your agents are calling it quits.
1. Low Compensation
The primary reason employees leave a job is because of inadequate compensation. Since a call center agent’s role is a difficult and stressful one, they often feel underpaid and unappreciated for their efforts. Keep great call center agents by offering a competitive salary and opportunities to earn more through bonuses.
2. No Room for Growth
Too often, agents feel that there is no chance for growth or further career development within a call center. Most individuals don’t want to settle and as a call center manager, you should want agents that look for ways to improve themselves and ultimately your business. Make staying more attractive by promoting from within your team instead of hiring outside individuals when possible. To show that you are fully invested in agents’ ongoing success, offer career development options including reimbursement for courses or bonuses for achieving various designations.
3. Poor Culture or Environment
Agents need to feel cared for to remain engaged in their tasks. That starts with the environment they work in. Since they spend the majority of their time at a desk, invest in making the area comfortable by purchasing quality chairs and accessories. In addition, if the overall culture of your team is negative, spend time investing in activities that lift spirits and show appreciation like employee luncheons or outings. Management should be trained to uplift agents, instead of always focusing on what needs to be changed. Simple changes to how they offer advice and constructive criticism play a major role in improving morale.
4. Stress and Burnout
Being a call center agent is no easy task. If agents don’t have a personality that can separate angry conversations from being personal attacks on them, they won’t last long. Help with stress and burnout by making sure agents aren’t working too many hours in one day and are utilizing their vacation time. Create a break schedule that allows them to move away from their desk and recharge.
When leaders micromanage call center agents’ every move, they can feel suffocated by their superiors. This type of leadership makes agents feel untrusted, which causes disengagement. Empower agents to make decisions or touch calls that make them a hero to customers. They will feel more secure and confident in continuing to give memorable service as a result.
6. Not Having the Right Tools
It’s no secret that technology plays a crucial role in call centers, but not every center invests in the right tools. Customer relationship management systems that include call scoring is one of the most beneficial investments. Scoring systems automatically review every call based on standards set by management. This information can be accessed in real- time by both managers and agents to identify opportunities for improvement. Having this information allows agents to take control and responsibility for their own actions by implementing changes on future calls to improve their score and the service given to customers.
7. Lack of Acknowledgement
Something many individuals are looking for is acknowledgment for their efforts. This is especially true as more millennials join the workforce. Agents need to feel that their efforts are valued and appreciated. Managers should privately and publicly acknowledge and thank agents that go above the call of duty or excel at one of their responsibilities.
Retaining the best call center agents starts with how managers and leaders treat agents. Use these tips as a guide to improve your call center agent attrition.