Contact centers supervisors face a significant, ongoing challenge of high agent turnover. Statistics show that the average annual contact center agent turnover is in the thirty percent range, with some industries reaching over seventy percent. This means that supervisors are consumed in a vicious cycle of ramping up new agents to perform at their target level, only to have many of them quit within a year.
I compare this agent turnover scenario to “plugging holes in a leaky bucket” where you, as a supervisor, spend all your time going from one hole to the next to plug each one as leaks occur. However, you never really fix the root cause of the “leaky bucket” problem which is replacing the bucket with better constructed material so the bucket won’t leak in the first place.
This viscous cycle has a significant direct and indirect cost to organizations. According to Frost & Sullivan research, the true cost of agent attrition is between 60%-70% of an agent’s annual salary per turnover.
The cause of high turnover in many cases can be attributed to rigid contact center processes which treat all agents the same regardless of their needs and goals. For example, some support agents may aspire to become a supervisor or a sales person, or they require a more flexible schedule to maintain a work/life balance, yet they end up quitting because they feel frustrated by their organization’s inability to understand and/or accommodate their needs. This is especially true of millennials, who now account for an increasing percentage of the agent population.
In order for an organization to deliver a more personalized agent experience that scales across an enterprise, managers need to stop plugging holes in the leaky bucket and leverage new technology which allows them to adapt their processes to employees and workforce. NICE introduced Adaptive WFO which provides an innovative, personalized approach to agent onboarding, scheduling, coaching, performance and incentives. It represents a new way of engaging, motivating and empowering agents in a contact center to perform at their best level. We will be demonstrating Adaptive WFO for the first time at Interactions on May 23-25 in Orlando, Florida. There is still time to register. More information, including white papers, infographics and research, can be found on the NICE Adaptive WFO website.