Call center agents are the foundation upon which BPO companies are built on. These agents play a vital role when it comes to raising the standards as they are the first point of interaction for the clients. Their initial approach will determine whether clients want to secure your services or not.
Therefore, hiring talented individuals as call center agents is crucial and is of utmost importance for BPO companies. It is important for individuals to understand what qualities a good agent should possess; this will give them the confidence to succeed moving forward.
Companies that have up-to-the-mark call center agents, reach new heights of success and can gel up a strong connection with their clients so that they can come back time and again with a sense of comfort and great satisfaction.
All these practices make a special bond between the call center agents and the company and thus can improve their retention, which is necessary for an industry with around 30-45% turnover.
Consequently, the question arises about the characteristics that make a good call center agent, the points which help him succeed, and where he can stumble. Here are the few strengths and weaknesses that set call center agents apart.
5 Qualities of a Good Call Center Agent
The call center representatives must exert extra effort and go beyond to provide exceptional customer care service to their clients. They should infuse a sense of responsibility and self-assurance while dealing with clients. Here are the 5 qualities of a good call center agent.
An Effective Communicator
The call center agents have to spend their time conversing with people they don't even know and make them feel at ease and in comfort, they need effective communication skills. These exceptional communication skills help them to provide their customers with the best customer service experience and to address their concerns.
A quality agent not only knows how to communicate but also knows how to convey the company's message and how to share complex information efficiently and easily. The skill set of an effective communicator includes:
a. Foreseeing customer demand
b. Providing complete details
c. Making clients aware
d. Fostering connections
e. Giving personalized attention
Problem Solving Approach
The ability to think critically is another skill essential for success in the call center. Agents who are able to think outside the box when faced with problems are more likely to find solutions, whether those problems involve a malfunctioning computer system or an argument with a coworker. They swiftly assess the situation, ask critical questions, and conduct relevant research in order to find a solution.
Empathic Towards Others
The quality of the customer experience depends on empathy. Admittedly, emotions are involved in 95% of buying behavior. The capacity to identify and control your own and other people's emotions is known as emotional intelligence.
Customer satisfaction and customer retention are both increased by agents who develop strong emotional connections with their clients. Agents with emotional intelligence have a great chance to foster relationships, lower dropouts, and boost lifetime value.
Patience is the Key
Working in the BPO industry can be a challenging task. Customers who are aggressive, irritated, and frequently unwilling to listen contact your call center. Agents should be able to reply coolly and leave consumers with a positive opinion despite these difficulties.
Effective customer service representatives know how to be understanding and let consumers express themselves without escalating the situation. Instead of reacting emotionally, they gently address issues and pay attention to complaints.
No matter how efficient a call center agent you are, you can be held accountable or may face criticism. Agents who know that they, like everyone else, have room to grow and develop professionally excel in their careers.
Agents need to be self-aware enough to evaluate their performance, take criticism constructively, and develop personal development strategies. Motivate them to keep tabs on their progress and make adjustments as they see appropriate.
5 Common Weaknesses of Call Center Agents
It is insufficient to hire call center agents just on the basis of their skills. In order to assist your agents in avoiding failure, you must also be aware of where and how it happens. The five most typical reasons why call center agents perform poorly are listed below:
Bad in Handling Pressure
Since the customer experience is seen as more essential than pricing by 64 % of the customers, call center agents have a lot of burden on their shoulders to deliver an excellent customer experience. Agents are real, and they can, unfortunately, crack under the weight of having to be polite, respond quickly, show empathy, and know the right answers at the appropriate moment.
Agents often require a reliable network of people around them to help them feel more secure and ready for success.
Around 62% of consumers believe that an agent's level of expertise and resourcefulness directly affects the quality of their customer support experience. Unfortunately, many people working in call centers don't have the education or experience to do their jobs effectively.
Agents should receive consistent training focusing on mastering fundamental skills and avoiding frequent mistakes. Discussions like what makes a good customer service call and how to structure a good conversation can help the agents effectively.
Not Following Up
The best customer service goes beyond the phone call. To better serve customers, call center employees should evaluate every interaction they have. As a follow-up, agents should check in with clients to see if the problem was resolved to their satisfaction. This degree of service shows dedication to customers and helps solve any outstanding problems, although this quality is not usually possessed by call center agents.
If you want to ensure that every customer has a positive call center experience, you should incorporate these best practices and follow-up procedures into your new employee training sessions.
Lack of Flexibility
Agents can become too reliant on the laid-out framework of a call center, making it difficult for them to think creatively outside the context. Agents who aren't functioning well don't have any idea what to do when something unexpected happens.
Agents should be encouraged to be as versatile and adaptable as possible. It's incredibly helpful, and it can be taught and fostered through seminars, and individual attention from a trainer.
The success of a call center depends on the performance of each agent, and this holds true even with cloud-based call centers and other forms of remote labor. Unfortunately, some agents prefer to work alone rather than build relationships with their coworkers, which can lead to poor alignment and overall team performance.
Managers and other organizational leaders should foster an environment conducive to teamwork in order to improve operational efficiency, customer service, and the overall quality of the staff.
Customers should always be at the forefront of your mind while you search for the most qualified agents and help your team overcome obstacles. These strengths and weaknesses can set the call center agents apart. They can act as an ultimate guide for a person who wants to excel in this field and aim to be an efficient call center agent.