How to Prepare and Implement Quality Monitoring for Agents Working From Home
The spread of the COVID-19 pandemic has severely impacted the working situation of call centers. According to The Economic Times, the BPO giant Teleperformance has 2,000 agents working from home in China and 1400 in the United States. Therefore, many call center service providers like them are seeking permission from their clients to allow their agents to work from home. Now, call center management needs to restructure its daily processes for implementing robust quality monitoring processes.
To do this, it is important to:
- Establish technical support for the staff at their homes
- Prepare for the growth of call numbers
- Monitor the effectiveness of employees
How to Optimise Work-From-Home Situations
Here are some methods which the call center agent management can use to prepare and properly monitor the agents working from home:
1. Set Agents Up With Technical Requirements
To prepare agents to work from home, companies need to provide them with the essential technical equipment. This is because, to successfully serve customers, agents need access to your cloud contact center platform, knowledge base, and customer files. The most basic requirements to get your agents set up with are a computer, a headset, and a stable internet connection. Call center agent management should provide:
- Laptops with built-in webcams, that are dedicated to working and dialling
- A headset with echo-cancellation built into the microphone for the best possible call quality
- Wired ethernet connection for smooth connectivity
- Virtual call center software with multiple outbound dialling modes and prioritisation for inbound dialling
These tools will keep your agents up and running more quickly while working from home and help improve customer service quality.
2. Provide Targeted Coaching
The agents need to be made familiar with the work from home situation. They need proper coaching to be able to give their best performance while working from their homes. It includes taking advantage of eLearning programs, sharing presentations over Zoom or other platforms, roleplaying over webcam, and other methods. Companies can provide training to agents in the following ways:
- Visual: Visual learners learn best from demonstrations, charts, graphs, and dashboards. Video-based coaching sessions will help such home-based to retain information.
- Auditory: Agents with this learning style learn best by hearing and would prefer to listen to recordings and engage in discussion.
- Kinesthetic: Agents who are kinesthetic learners take in new information best by taking action, such as coaching that includes roleplaying, self-assessments, and hands-on practice.
AI Voice Assistants are providing insights to influence agent coaching down to the individual agent level. As a result, they can enable agents with the training they need most. Further, using them can foster connectivity and community in the workplace.
3. Communicate Often to Support Agents
Typically, agents are a few steps away from their peers and leaders when they need suggestions and answers for customers. However, it is not possible in a work from home scenario. As a result, those who lean on others for help might feel a little lost in the first few days at home. Therefore, management needs to go beyond email and meetings while deciding how to communicate with their team. Now, it is important to provide an instant channel such as web chat, where agents can reach out to you if they need instant help.
Leaders can give clear direction and guidance to the agents. Further, seeing familiar faces can make a big difference in keeping your WFH agents motivated. Companies can use the following methods to communicate more with their work from home agents:
- Hold a brief meeting daily
- Provide an instant messaging tool
- Arrange one-on-one meetings for personalised interaction
- Have a remote communication plan for handling call escalations
4. Use Real-Time Reporting Tools
Call center companies need to install a system that can show what’s happening with your at-home agents in real-time, with a clear dashboard to monitor every employee and their status. Thus, using real-time reporting tools, call center management will be able to know:
- How many calls are active
- Who is on a dead call
- How many agents are available
- Call abandonment rates
- Rate of dropped calls
- If anyone is running out of data
Using these tools, companies will get real-time reports emailed to them at regular intervals. Certainly, technologies like Artificial Intelligence are making it possible for call centers to provide these kinds of services for agents working from home.
5. Provide Quality Assurance Monitoring and Scoring Software
Real-time reporting tools can enable you to check how many at-home agents are on a call. However, they will not be able to determine the quality of the conversation. Therefore, with the agents working from home, it has become a priority for call center management to implement practices for monitoring these agents.
By quality monitoring and scoring software, contact centers can:
- Score every interaction based on what was said on the call and the behaviour of the agents.
- Focus on evaluating the interactions that scored low based on metrics that need improvement.
- Coach the agents on the behaviour that drove a low KPI and try to improve them.
- Compare how agents are performing in these key areas before and after the transition to a work-from-home environment to identify additional coaching requirements.
- Ensure that agents are on-task during their scheduled hours.
Call centers can enable quality monitoring with the help of Artificial Intelligence and Speech Analytics software. It can easily score the calls by understanding the sentiment of the caller and determining the customer satisfaction level. Further, it can report this data directly to the management in real-time, drive valuable insights and leads, and give suggestions for improvement.
6. Control Compliance Issues with AI
Working remotely creates new challenges around ensuring and maintaining security across voice calls. As a result, companies have to develop new policies, standards, and procedures for the agent’s environment. Further, they have to ensure that proper monitoring is in place to identify and mitigate gaps. Artificial Intelligence tools can automatically redact sensitive information from calls so that businesses don’t have to worry about compliance. Therefore, using Speech Analytics, companies can:
- Detect whether the agents were following instructions or not
- Provide a report to the call center agent management in real-time
- Give suggestions for improvement
- Surface compliance risks from 100% of calls.
The world might see an increase in work from home situations in the future. These techniques can prepare call center companies to run remotely in an effective and productive way. In conclusion, Artificial Intelligence tools can be quite helpful for companies to provide a seamless customer service experience.
We help in providing AI-Powered speech solutions like speech analytics that can help in quality monitoring for your contact center. We are offering a live demo of our AI-Powered solution to answer your queries.