The Great Resignation
Hiring shortages, high staff turnover, and skyrocketing call volumes are common challenges in the service sector today. The added pressure on customer service operations has forced companies to start looking into internal processes and identify ways to increase efficiency through innovative technology solutions.
Workers enjoy the perks of record-high demand
People are voluntarily leaving their jobs for better opportunities, some are seeking higher paying positions, while others are switching career paths, leaving behind the increased workload. Regardless, the high staff turnover and tight competition for recruitment is giving job seekers more power, putting employers in a position to have to offer opportunities that are more appealing than the alternatives.
Companies are increasingly offering hiring bonuses, stay-on bonuses and boosting their wages, as they are getting more desperate to fill vacancies. Increasing wages and constantly onboarding new talent is extremely costly, a cost that most companies simply can’t afford in the long run. What’s worse, these unforeseen and unplanned workforce issues have a negative impact on the customer experience, which inevitably has a negative impact on loyalty.
This position has forced companies to reimagine their operations and transform the overall workplace experience. “It’s never been more important for companies to engage their workforce. In light of the great resignation companies are seeing competences and knowledge leave them – competences and knowledge that is key to those companies that need to improve their performance. Engaging staff in performance improvement will be crucial for companies moving forward”.
Define the problems and automate!
Retaining the talent that is already in place is less expensive than onboarding and training new employees. However, with skyrocketing call volumes, a retainment strategy in itself will not resolve the situation. Incorporating self-service options for customers to resolve their issues by themselves, alleviates a lot of the stress and workload on employees and is a cost-effective solution. Nevertheless, it is important to keep in mind, why do customers contact their vendor? why do they contact their supplier? why do they call their phone company? because something is wrong! “By and far contact centers exists because customers call when there's something either they cannot do themselves, or a process has failed. This is exactly what we have been teaching companies for many years, to fix the problems and minimize contacts instead of continuing to recruit staff and increase cost”.
Companies have already started to increase self-service as it has been driven by customer expectations. However, all things considered, the key to fixing the real problems is continuous improvements with increased automation and process optimization. “We even see that companies are cutting back on opening hours to avoid cost instead of fixing the real problem”. The Increased self-service portals, limit contacts – The same goes for increased automation to fix problems, limits cost, simple as that!
Where are the defective processes?
With the rapid increase in call volumes and waiting times, companies must continue to recruit. This is putting more pressure on customer service functions that are not able to recruit, due to the unprecedented number of vacancies at the moment. The great resignation has resulted in a situation where companies are now forced to identify where there are defective processes to be able to fix the problem, forced to recognize the cost of poor processes and the impact it has on the customer experience, which has been underestimated for many years.
What is the solution?
How can we increase automation? How can we become more efficient? How can we avoid cost? These are all questions companies are themselves. But it is not easy when customer service is dealing with massive influx of work.
Reducing contacts and operating quicker requires investment. Investment in innovative technology. The immense technological advancements in recent years allow companies to provide service at a lower cost. It allows them to use data analysis to better meet customer needs to have a positive impact on customer satisfaction. It’s more important now than ever that companies leverage these modern solutions and the opportunity to offer consistent, competitive customer service.
Optimizing the workforce by creating a better work experience for employees with Workflow automation tools will help customer service functions increase speed that enables them to handle more customer inquiries. Secondly, Quality monitoring tools will support efficiency by streamlining and optimizing internal processes and reducing contacts. These are the two options where companies can reduce their customer service costs.
Take back the power
Up-level customer service with a well trained and equipped workforce. It’s like training agents to become CX athletes. But without the sweat! Why do athletes monitor their performance? To pinpoint the one step that separates the best from the second best. To drive behavior modification, optimize performance, and prevent injuries. Engaging employees and creating retention strategies to avoid attrition will set companies apart in a competitive job market. Take back the power by upskilling the talent pool and keep employees engaged with sufficient data and appropriate tools to resolve customer issues. For this reason, investment is critical to be able to bounce back more strongly.
By monitoring and measuring customer interactions at the actionable level, companies can easily identify problems and improve the customer experience and business performance across the entire organization. But it requires investment! There will always be a few obstacles on the way, but the future of technology is here to overcome them and create a safeguard against future unpredictability.
At Nexcom we deliver tools that help companies identify process level issues outside the staff’s control, tools that reveal ways to improve customer satisfaction by identifying operational inefficiencies and engaging staff in performance improvements. Book a call with one of our CX Experts with many years of consulting experience to learn how we can help you make customer experience your competitive advantage.