Expansion is an important part of growth for many companies. Adding more call center agents to your roster can be exciting and make things go much smoother for your facility’ daily operations – but is it really necessary? Will adding more agents truly benefit your center, or are you considering expansion purely for its own sake?
Here is more information on how to determine whether adding more call center agents to your facility will truly benefit your center – or whether something else might be a better solution.
First, Determine Your Needs
How many calls does your center typically handle in a day? While this number will vary drastically depending on a variety of factors, knowing the average answer will help you create a game plan for handling those calls and staffing your center correctly.
How can you figure out your typical call number per day? In larger facilities, your ACD or automated call distribution program will help you determine exactly how many calls you typically handle in a day. These programs often have the capability to capture a snapshot of your average day’s workload and report this information back to you so that you can use it to prepare a game plan for future days.
Don’t have an ACD program in place? Use your call-logging or switchboard system for an accurate report. While the information may not be extremely detailed, it will still offer you a solid snapshot of your overall workload on a typical day.
Once you’ve broken down how many calls you typically receive in a day, break this information down further to find out how many you receive during each hour of business. Are you receiving more calls in the morning or the afternoon? When do you receive the most calls? Are you sufficiently staffed for the times when you receive these calls? This information will help you further plan your staff reorganization or expansion.
How Do Your Agents Feel About Their Workload?
It’s one thing to have enough agents to answer calls every day – it’s another thing altogether to have enough agents to keep one another from getting extremely stressed and burn out from doing so.
Burnout is the leading cause of turnover in the contact center industry, and turnover can cause serious problems for employers. Preventing burnout and eventual turnover may be as simple as creating an environment for employees that is comfortable and relaxed and free of much of the stress that tends to be present in the industry. One of the best ways to do this is to ensure that your employees aren’t overworked.
Consider this: some dialers and call distribution programs route calls in such a way that the same agents end up receiving dozens or even hundreds of calls a day. Even if they can handle that many calls, the quality of their customer service is likely to suffer at this rate. Likewise, consumers are likely to have to wait longer to speak with an agent when being directed to a staff member with an already-high workload. In this situation, everyone ends up stressed, frustrated, and tired by the end of the day – and your call center suffers for it.
If there is no way to improve the way your center routes its calls and the number of consumers an agent works with each day, you should definitely consider adding more call center agents to your staff. Sometimes these problems are just symptoms of “growing pains” for smaller centers, and that’s okay! Hire smart, and these issues should disappear on their own.
However, some centers can rework the way they route calls or distribute work among their staff members and keep their staff numbers slim without overworking everyone. Weigh your options before making your decision and know that you have a great deal more to gain from hiring more staff for a growing center than just more positions being filled.
So, You Need to Hire More Call Center Agents? Hire Smart!
Once you’ve determined that hiring more agents is what your center needs, knowing how to approach the process can be difficult. However, there is definitely a right and a wrong way to do so. Hiring properly and getting great agents to staff your center will reduce turnover and improve the productivity and efficiency of your center – as well as bump up the customer service they’re able to offer your callers!
Your top priority should be to look for people who understand the industry already. While there’s nothing wrong with hiring a first-time agent if they’re highly-motivated and ready to learn on the job, it’s always a better idea to hire an experienced agent who can get to work and become a profitable member of your team right away. Not only will this reduce the strain on your company’s resources that a new hire can become, but it will also reduce the lag time that a new hire can create as they adjust to the way your company operates.
Use today’s best technology during your interviews to see which agents are truly ready to become a valuable member of your team. You invest in the tools you use in your center – why not in the tools you use during the hiring and training process? These are the building blocks of tomorrow’s agents – and your contact center’s future. Invest in them the same way you might invest in any other aspect of your business and see the rewards with newly-hired agents that blow you away from day one.
If you think it would be wise to add more call center agents to your operation, consider partnering with the industry experts here at ChaseData. We have the tools and technology you need to find great gents and make the hiring process and easier one, so everyone on your staff can reap the benefits of expansion. Whether your business is booming or you’re just looking to add a few more spots to your payroll, we can help you make it fast and easy. Contact us today to learn how!