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Article 2 min read

Are your customer service representatives happy?

By Brett Grossfeld

Last updated January 10, 2018

It’s a tired cliche: the customer service representative sitting in a cubicle with a blank face and dim eyes, their mind wandering about something else he or she would rather be doing. That archaic perception of customer service agents is no longer fitting: today’s agents need to be dynamic problem solvers who are constantly on their toes. It can be enthralling at times, but like at any job, agents may fall victim to dissatisfaction in the workplace.

Satisfied customer service agents need what all employees deserve: a positive internal culture, great coworkers, and the potential for career growth. As they work diligently in the weeds of customer support, it may not always be easy to tell if they’re happy or not.

Conducting an Agent Satisfaction (ASAT) survey

A simple way to get to the bottom of how happy your agents are is to conduct an agent satisfaction (ASAT) survey. It can be something as easy as asking support agents how much they like or dislike their jobs, but you’re likely to learn more by digging deeper into the complexities of their duties.

The process for conducting an ASAT survey is as follows:

  • Survey agents, leads, and managers

  • Survey everyone, every quarter

  • Have someone outside the support team conduct the survey to evaluate and summarise the data

  • Act on survey feedback

Evaluating agent performances

It’s no secret that happy agents make for successful ones. Monitoring your agents’ performances can be a telling factor of both their competency and their level of enjoyment at work.

Many of the key metrics used to evaluate a customer service organisation apply to individual agents as well. Some of the most helpful metrics include:

  • Number of tickets solved per day

  • CSAT ratings

  • Agent touches/updates

  • Ticket volumes by channel

  • Number of escalations

  • Areas of focus

If a previously strong performer isn’t as close to their performance baselines as they should be, it could be worth starting a dialogue with them. There might be other factors keeping them from putting forth their best effort.

Making sure your agents stay happy

Establishing a good cadence with your ASAT surveys, like the previously mentioned “every quarter” approach, will emphasise areas that need improvement. More often than not, unsatisfied agents are victims of company culture that see customer service as a micromanaged cost center. This leads to uninspired workers feeling like they’re stuck at a dead-end job.

The happiest customer service agents are the ones that feel empowered to challenge themselves and each other. Provide them with opportunities for growth and development, like taking on more complex requests and working with their ever-changing customer base. If they can’t feel like they’re growing, then your company may not be able to either.

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