Keeping reps engaged is always a top priority for
call centers. But during the pandemic, it has become
a lot more challenging, forcing site supervisors to
rethink how they motivate their people.
Normally, supervisors spend their days walking the
call center floor, listening to reps interact with
customers, and encouraging positive behavior through
leader boards and informal moments of coaching. But
now that most reps are working from home, this
culture of reactive, face-to-face performance management
isn’t possible. And that’s a problem.
Turnover in call centers already averages
33%, in large part due to lack of engagement and insufficient
training. The isolation of remote work threatens to
increase these risks, while simultaneously making it
difficult for leaders to determine who’s thriving
and who needs additional support.
Fortunately, supervisors can circumvent these risks
and increase remote engagement by leveraging the
data tracking, and coaching tools available in their
performance management platform. But to do that they
need to rethink how they engage and train these workers,
and how they track their results.
How to coach remote reps
Industry leaders know that behavior drives outcomes.
The more call center reps are trained on those desired
behaviors, the more successful they will be. This is
true whether reps are sitting in a call center or at
their own dining room table.
But now that reps are remote, call centers need to
be more intentional in their coaching techniques.
While many supervisors still rely on an ad hoc
approach to coaching – offering advice when they
see a rep struggling or a team missing its goals --
the most successful supervisors take a data-driven
approach to coaching. They establish a formal
schedule for one-on-one sessions, and use trend
reports to identify individual coaching needs,
using key performance indicators (KPIs) to set
coaching agendas and to track progress over time.
By attaching trend data, structure, and KPIs to
every coaching engagement, supervisors gain
visibility over the performance of every team member,
and reps know exactly what’s expected of them and
what they need to improve.
This approach was a best practice before the
pandemic, but now it’s critical if call centers
want to keep their remote people motivated and on
For supervisors who are trying to find their
coaching cadence in a remote work environment, our
experts compiled these tips.
Use performance data to prioritize coaching.
Just as you might spend more time with reps who you
see struggling in the call center, you can use
performance reports, rep rankings, and KPIs generated
through your performance management platform to determine
which remote reps require more immediate or frequent
attention. Building coaching around trend data ensures
you put your efforts where they are most needed.
Tie performance data to individual coaching plans.
Before every coaching session, review
trend reports to
see overall team performance and how that individual’s
results measure up, then show the rep those results at
the start of each session. This data-driven approach is
an objective way to show reps where they are excelling
and where they can improve, which can reduce the risk of
pushback and encourage positive change.
Document every coaching interaction.
To generate the most value from these interactions, use
the digital supervisor log to record your goals and
outcomes for each coaching session. Include the KPIs to
address, concerns raised by you or your rep during the
call, and your goals for the coming week/month. This
documentation provides an easily accessible history of
coaching, which you can compare to the rep’s results over
time to determine whether your coaching methods are working.
Invite coaching feedback.
Following each coaching sessions, invite reps to rate
the session and offer feedback through automated surveys.
This continuous feedback loop will help you vet your
impact, and identify ways to improve.
Between coaching sessions, set reminders to review each rep’s
progress against KPIs. This will help you determine who
needs more immediate follow-ups, and will inform goals for
future coaching sessions.
Send tips and updates between calls.
Use automated messages between coaching sessions to encourage
the coached behavior, celebrate improvements, and reinforce
the training. This will ensure reps don’t lose focus between
engagements, and it lets them know that you are invested
in their success.
Even when this pandemic ends, remote work will likely be a
permanent part of the call center environment. Figuring out how
to engage and coach these remote workers will help you lower
turnover and foster behaviors that deliver better results.
To learn how TouchPoint One’s
Acuity performance management
Sidekick supervisor coaching system can help you
improve your coaching techniques, please contact me at
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