Staff turnover is typical for many companies. Nevertheless, their HR departments often underestimate the severity of the problem. Moreover, they take no measures to combat it. Call center turnover rates are sky-high compared to other industries, but what can you do and how to reduce attrition rate?
To assess a business's health objectively, it is necessary to understand the difference between employee turnover and loss of staff. Turnover followed by personnel changes causes severe organizational and operational problems. The staff losses reduce profits since vacancies have to be compensated by the leftover employees' extracurricular work. It is essential to identify the causes and outline steps to remedy the situation.
In our many years of experience operating the outsourcing contact center, and building whole call centers per customer requirements, we managed to work out some effective call center retention strategies. With vast expertise in improving the agent team productivity, we can conclude that following are the most useful measures to reduce attrition in call centers.
This article is aimed at companies that strive to maintain a stable staff and develop the necessary competence.
Today, the core of the CC staff are generation Y and generation Z people at the start of their careers. Most "zoomer generation" representatives are emotional and prone to hasty decisions. With their appearance on the labor market, staff turnover began to grow noticeably throughout the world. With such a resource, the adaptation period cannot be stretched over six months because the industry's average operator's life is even shorter.
Loss of personnel can vary significantly in both the size of the business and its sphere of activity. As you might expect, the larger the company, the higher the call center retention rate. The survey by iMercer across various industries shows turnover among different sizes of service vendors:
For many operators, outsourcing CCs are their first place of work. This job requires no previous work experience, management skills, knowledge of machinery, etc. For this not to negatively influence the work's quality and efficiency, a newcomer must be turned into a full-fledged operator in a month at the longest.
As the employee that could not adapt would leave rather quickly, the funds invested in finding, hiring, and training them are lost forever. The same report provides insight into the main reasons employees voluntarily leave work:
Of the staff that voluntarily quit their jobs, 44% were representatives of the younger generation.
According to HumanResourcesToday, US business is losing up to a trillion USD annually due to staff turnover. Each voluntarily leaving employee costs the company about 15% of the position's annual salary. This percentage increases if this employee has been working for a year at least. When the average company loses a third of new hires, the losses eat up the margin set to counter falls due to unforeseen actors like a pandemic.
The constant churn of employees affects the bottom line. The company has to pay employees overtime to cover for the increased load. The extra work irritates employees, making them more prone to quit, thus exacerbating the problem.
According to our data, the main problems leading to attrition are:
Staff turnover is a common problem for outsourcing contact centers. Most often, either students or specialists who want to work temporarily or have not found a job in their primary specialty come to work. They need to be adequately motivated.
If a candidate has been selected, it means that they have the necessary potential. The leader's task is to reveal them, raise the neophytes' desire to feel a taste of the profession. The main goals of such an adaptation process are to:
To do this, you need to analyze the indicators of staff turnover regularly. First of all, you would need to improve the existing business processes.
Attrition management begins at the stage of promoting the vacancy. The first specialist that a candidate gets in contact with is a recruiter. Still, the quality of the job posting needs close attention. It may contain a "naked" job offer outfitted by proposals, attractive to modern youth.
You can improve the quality of candidates by implementing a referral program and allowing remote work. When reviewing CVs, one should consider the candidates' personal qualities, communication, team skills, and cultural characteristics scrupulously. At the interview, it is necessary to define job responsibilities, general objectives and expected performance indicators clearly so that the future employee knows what is expected of them.
Some operators require more knowledge. The reduction in the amount of training can result in some of the useful education pieces becoming unavailable to some of the beginners. This can create feelings of exclusion, inadequacy, and disorganization, leading to the employee leaving the company.
Here are some tips for improving your training programs:Use different teaching methods and coaching styles;
It is vital that each agent goes through the same training period, acquires the necessary knowledge and skills, acknowledges the corporate values, and establishes relationships with future colleagues. The training period must improve the team's interaction and cohesion, creating a place where each agent will feel like a vital member. A highly engaged workforce can reduce a company's employee turnover by 25-59%.
It is essential that agents have clearly defined expectations, receive feedback based on those expectations, and know whom to talk to when they have a problem or concern. They should also participate in making business decisions and receive information about the company's goals and strategies.
Internal candidates fill most open vacancies in call centers. Use this as an incentive for agents to work harder and promote the best. Staff members must understand that excellence leads to success, so any professional achievement must be recognized.
To facilitate the adaptation process, avoid giving marks and fining newbies in their first working days. When the operator first sits in their workplace, they are already under a lot of stress. This approach will increase motivation, help to build collective morale and to engage newcomers. Daily individual communication, clarification of approaches to setting and achieving goals would be enough at the beginning.
Call center agents who feel that their skills remain the same are more likely to quit. Encourage employees to learn new skills and technologies. They will stay in the team longer and be more competent and confident in performing their duties.
Teams using progressive call center software are more efficient. Easy-to-learn and easy-to-use apps make the operator's job better and more comfortable. This will increase satisfaction and the likelihood of the employee staying longer.
The most effective call center agents usually establish personalized communication with their callers and get the most satisfaction from their work. Therefore, customer-centric metrics such as contact quality, customer satisfaction, and first contact resolution must be monitored.
At the same time, it is important not to overestimate quantitative indicators (average processing time or a number of calls per hour). This will reduce the load on the call center personnel and ensure a low attrition rate.
It is essential to understand what the candidate sees and hears when they first visit the company, how not to alienate them from the start, and work to ensure that the company has an attractive corporate culture. For this, it is necessary to provide:
Eliminate the opportunity for untrained beginners to spend their free time with working operators. Why? There is a high likelihood that everyday conversations or difficulties that seem mundane to employees can become completely overwhelming for a candidate.
A call center can be a great workplace loved by employees. Create a great work environment and show that you are investing in the staff members' wellbeing. And then they will do the same for you, and attrition in the workplace will decrease.
Staff turnover will always be a problem. But if you and your team take the right steps, you can quickly reduce the call center attrition.
How to reduce turnover rate? Treat your people correctly, demonstrate that they are valuable members of the team, and you will see a dramatic decrease in employee attrition. Remember, it is not so much about your staff as about your attitude toward them. Motivated agents are the company's face, so why not lead a great team of call center agents who love what they do?
The excellent staff turns a profitable business into a better one. Order an attrition strategy from professionals, and Simply Contact will make your new employees' adaptation process as comfortable as possible!
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