What is an Agent?

Also called customer service representatives, among other titles, an agent is a person who works in a physical or virtual contact center. An agent's primary duty is to interact with customers in order to assist them with whatever they need from an organization. This often means helping them place an order or assisting with issues related to products and services. Agents can interact with customers in numerous ways, including phone, chat, email, and social media. Agents sometimes specialize in one type of media, but there are those who handle multiple channels, for example phone and chat.

Agents are frequently the only human contact a customer has with a business. By default, they are brand ambassadors and play a crucial role in influencing the customer experience. Because of this they need to be well screened, trained and managed and they need to have good tools available to them at their desk. Examples of these tools include an intuitive, easy-to-use agent interface for contact handling, customer relationship management (CRM) applications, knowledge bases and performance reports.

An agent typically undergoes training in both hard and soft skills upon being hired, and then periodically after that as the need arises. Agents are usually assigned to a team that is managed by a supervisor whose duties include monitoring, coaching and developing the agents. A quality assurance team may review and evaluate agents' interactions based on defined criteria and provide the results to supervisors for further action.

Customer satisfaction is tightly tied to how well agents perform. Organizations that focus on developing and supporting their agents are one step ahead in winning in the experience economy.

How NICE is Redefining Customer Experience

NICE CXone is the industry’s only interaction-centric platform where channels, data, applications, and knowledge converge to improve customer experience at scale.

It is the leading, most complete and unified CX Platform on the market, used by thousands of organizations of all sizes around the world to help them consistently deliver exceptional customer experiences. CXone is a cloud native, unified suite of applications designed to help you holistically run your call (or contact) center operations.

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