Avaya is well ahead of the pack in recognizing how a rewarding employee experience (EX) is vital for delivering a better customer experience (CX). That’s why Avaya brings together CX and EX tools in a “Total Experience” cloud-based solution. “A Total Experience strategy puts the contact center agent in the driver’s seat while the customer is giving cues and directions,” said Mike Kuch, senior director for solutions marketing, in a recent post.
Providing a great EX can help build customer loyalty, drive brand reputation, and improve financial performance. In fact, research from Glassdoor shows a clear correlation between EX and customer satisfaction as an average 1-point increase in a company’s rating is associated with a 1.3 increase in customer satisfaction.
Addressing the challenges
Despite benefits, organizations can find it difficult to deliver a satisfying EX for their contact center teams. Limited financial resources can hold things back or the senior management team may be focused on other strategic priorities. Nevertheless, if you want to improve your EX and CX linkage in the months ahead, here are five recommendations from software company Qualtrics.
1. Invest in the workplace environment. Do your contact center agents work in a windowless, industrial setting? If so, bringing them modern, on-site services amenities like a fitness center, lounge or café can dramatically improve their EX. At the same time, think about your remote agents working from a variety of at-home settings. Perhaps giving them more control over their log-in, log-log out times and daily breaks will make them feel better about their vital roles.
2. Clean up your processes and workflows. Rather than toggling between apps and data bases, contact center agents would much rather work from a “single pane of glass,” that gives them access to a customer’s information, as well as the ability to answer questions or reach out to a product expert in real time. In fact, one of the top drivers of employee burnout is ineffective processes and systems, especially those that have been identified as problems but remain unresolved. So, think of ways you can make the agent’s life easier and you will be well on your way to boosting both EX and CX.
3. Talk about job security. With recent layoffs at major tech companies, job and financial security are top issues for many employees. Your contact center agents need to know that they’re working for an organization that will continue being successful in the future, and pay them a competitive salary and benefits. Meet with your HR leaders to see where your organization stands against the competition and with your communications team to fine-tune your messaging.
4. Appeal to employees’ values. Think about how you frame contact center job descriptions and talk with agents after they join the organization. Do you focus on productivity, metrics and reports? Or do you let them know the importance of their work in advancing the mission and goals of the organization. Many employees want to feel connected with an enterprise that shares their values. Employee engagement scores are typically higher and turnover is lower for these organizations, enhancing both EX and CX.
5. Improve work-life balance. This is hardly a surprise for contact center leaders, since agents have been working at surge levels for at least the last three years. Now these employees are pushing back and asking for more flexible schedules and personal time. To improve your EX, look for ways to accommodate their individual requests in ways that maintain overall productivity. You should also avoid “job creep” that adds to the burdens of your most productive agents, but can burn them out more quickly. Offering a personalized work-life program can help you reduce turnover, increase agent tenure and shift your CX up a couple of notches.
To summarize, Avaya has great EX, CX and Total Experience solutions – but you need to build on that foundation to keep your contact center team engaged and motivated to perform at the highest possible level.