The popularity of working from home has soared over the last two decades. This is no surprise; as technology has improved, working remotely has not only become more possible, it has become the best potion for many professionals.
If your contact center is like most modern operations, you have at least a small portion of your team that is either entirely remote or works remotely part-time. Keeping those agents as focused and productive as the rest of your staff can be a challenge, especially when you aren’t physically with your remote agents to provide monitoring and encouragement. Here, we’ve compiled a list of suggestions for maintaining remote agent productivity, so your center can keep moving efficiently without cramping the comfortable style of your work-from-home workforce.
Make Sure to Motivate - Even When You’re Not There Physically
A good call center manager motivates their employees - even when those employees are hundreds of miles away. It is important to remember that motivation is the responsibility of your management team for every part of your agent staff, even those that do not work under your primary site roof. Remaining focused on providing encouragement for every part of your team will help those who work elsewhere feel included and remembered - and stay on-task as a result.
Go the Extra Mile - Emotionally, At Least
Speaking of feeling included, problems can arise when an employee does not work in the same location as the bulk of their peers or their supervisor. They can feel isolated, disconnected, and even forgotten. Don’t leave your team of remote employees feeling overlooked. Maintain remote agent productivity by forging the strongest possible bonds with these agents and ensuring they feel like an important part of the overall picture of success for your company.
Make extra calls. Send additional messages from time to time to ask your remote employees if they have any questions or concerns or if they need to address anything with your supervisory squad. Encourage engagement between remote employees and the rest of your team. This will not only help them feel more connected to your staff, but it will also give them the resources and support they need to achieve success.
Improve Time Management Skills
Time management is something that many people have issues with. This includes many people who choose to work from home. They may have grand ideas about how much they will be able to accomplish, but they aren’t actually able to do so because of distractions at home and poor management of time.
Because you aren’t actually with your remote agents, it may seem difficult to help them manage their time efficiently. After all, you can’t do it for them. However, there are plenty of ways that you can help with remote agent productivity without having to physically monitor your team.
Consider introducing training sessions on time management. These might be mandatory for all remote workers, or optional with bonuses available for those who choose to take them. While improving time management skills is not necessary for every remote agent, it is something that most could use help with - and many could majorly benefit from. Give them the opportunity to do so and see just how much this can positively impact your company’s output, too.
Consistency Leads to Remote Agent Productivity
Another major problem for many remote employees is that at-home work schedules can be inconsistent. This means that while they may put in a typical 9-5 workday on Monday, they may only work a few hours on Tuesday, and pull three small, split shifts on Wednesday and Thursday to compensate. This inconsistency can make it difficult for your employees to focus on the tasks at hand - and to provide excellent service when engaging with consumers.
Insist on consistency for remote call center agents. Let your remote team know that while they are free to work from home, they still need to put in a full day of work on days on which it is expected of them, and their schedule should be relatively consistent from day to day. This routine is key to a consistently great performance from your agents.
Keep Your Focus on the Right Details
There are so many metrics that are important to your contact center supervisory team when it comes to tracking success. Deciding which ones to focus on can be difficult. However, there are a handful that are truly important, especially when it comes to monitoring the success of your remote call center agents.
Do not focus on conversions exclusively. Also look at how well your agents are handling their exchanges with consumers, using metrics such as consumer satisfaction, average handling time, and first call resolution. Don’t demotivate your remote staff by focusing on the wrong metrics or failing to focus on what matters. No matter what industry your center is part of, your agents should be meeting consumer needs first. As long as they’re prioritizing that, you can train them toward other goals.
Make Technology Work for Your Agents
Without the rights tools and technology, your remote call center agents can never hope to provide the same kind of excellent service that your on-site agents do. While it is not your responsibility to ensure that every part of their set-up is outfitted with the latest and best technology, giving them access to powerful software and top-quality voice technology is an absolute must when it comes to creating successful agents.
If you’re in the market for technology that will help to bridge the gap between the performance of your on-site agents and those who work remotely, contact the industry experts at ChaseData. We have everything your team needs to stay productive and work efficiently, regardless of if they’re under the same roof or across the ocean from one another. Give our experts a call today to learn more!